January 17, 2024

Great Grid update: January 2024

Specialist planning law solicitor, Catherine Hibbert, takes a look at the latest developments in the Norwich to Tilbury pylon scheme, previously known as East Anglia Green.

National Grid is preparing for a significant increase in the level of renewable and low carbon electricity generation connections in East Anglia over the next decade and plans to reinforce and increase the capacity of the Region’s network to transport and distribute the increasing level of green energy to be generated in or close to this Region, including from proposed new offshore wind farms and Sizewell C.

A core part of its strategy includes the ‘Great Grid’ Norwich to Tilbury proposal, (formerly known as East Anglia Green) which aims to deliver a reinforcement to the 400kV high voltage power network in East Anglia to include a new 400kV connection substation in Tendring district. This scheme includes 183km of new electricity cable, largely carried on pylons and overhead lines, with limited sections of underground cabling in particularly sensitive areas.

It is anticipated that an application for development consent to authorise this scheme will be submitted towards the end of 2024. If confirmed, landowners affected by the proposal may be entitled to compensation where their property or an interest in their property is required temporarily or permanently to facilitate delivery of the scheme.

In the meantime, it is understood that certain preliminary surveys (including ground investigation, agricultural land classification, bat and tree assessments and wintering bird surveys) are now underway. Affected landowners will have been contacted by National Grid agents if survey access to their land is sought at this stage. The data from these surveys will be used to inform the choice of route and support the development consent order proposal in due course. National Grid state that they hope to reach agreement with relevant landowners for survey access but that they will fall back on statutory powers under the Housing and Planning Act 2016 to enable access where no licence can be agreed through negotiation.

Holmes and Hills have a dedicated team of solicitors in its CPO and DCO division with a wealth of experience dealing with compensation matters who can advise landowners on the impact of The Great Grid proposals, and any associated requests for survey access, on their respective interests and any potential claims for compensation and recovery of costs. Please call Catherine Hibbert or Susana Silva Moreira for a no-obligation preliminary discussion.

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