Over one hundred campaigners turn out against Lincolnshire electricity substation plans
MORE than one hundred campaigners against plans to build an electricity substation near to Bicker Fen attended a public meeting to voice their concerns.
Plans for a 20-hectare substation in the region are part of a scheme by RWE npower renewables to connect the Triton Knoll offshore wind farm to the national grid.
Four possible locations have been shortlisted in the area including two sites near Bicker, one at Swineshead and one at East Heckington.
A public meeting was held at Bicker village hall last week, in addition to formal consultation meetings arranged by RWE.
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Opposer Tony Boughen, who helped arrange the public meeting, said: “The very lively meeting was of the clear opinion that the substation should not be in the vicinity of Bicker or in any of the proposed locations. It is strongly believed that the locality is being inundated by energy related infrastructure and that this development is a step too far.
“It was agreed that this area of Lincolnshire is doing more than its fair share towards electricity generation and distribution and that, if more building is required, then other areas need to share the burden.
“Speakers urged all the affected localities to work together in the face of the imposition of this substation. Finally, the meeting agreed, with no dissenting voices, to strongly oppose its construction in or near the parish.”
Consultation into the plans, together with those for an intermediate electrical compound in the Skegness area, began on February 19 and several public exhibitions have been held in the area for residents to find out more.
Project manager for Triton Knoll, Jacob Hain, said consistent messages came out from the consultations in Bicker and Swineshead, which were attended by 193 people.
Speaking at a public exhibition, he said: “People are concerned about the access into the site at Bicker and roads not being suitable for heavy vehicles coming through the village. This is something that we have taken away and will look at a possible alternative solution.
"Concerns were also raised about the visual impact. From the exhibition events, we were able to explain that there would be a good opportunity for screening and we explained some of the measures we would put in place.
"It was not unanimous against the project but there was strong feeling of concern on the back of previous developments and so we were able to clearly explain our plans and answer any questions."
He added that Bicker Fen was selected as the connection point location as it requires the least amount of new infrastructure from National Grid, minimal impact on the environment and a relatively short cable route.
The consultation process closes on April 5. For more information on the plans, visit www.npower-renewables.com/tritonknoll