More pylons will lead to the 'unacceptable industrialization' of countryside

Pylons might not be items of beauty, but do they really destroy the Suffolk skyline?

Campaigners fear more pylons will ruin the Suffolk and Essex countryside - Credit: Sarah Lucy brown

Campaigners have labelled plans for a new 180-km long high voltage power line on 50-metre high pylons as "unacceptable industrialization" of the Suffolk and Essex countryside.

The newly-formed Essex Suffolk Norfolk Pylons action group is against the proposals and instead would rather sea an undersea cable network created to bring ashore and inland power from new windfarms and coastal nuclear power stations such as the planned Sizewell C.

Rosie Pearson, spokesperson for Essex Suffolk Norfolk Pylons, said: “This proposal is marketed as ‘green’ because it transports renewable energy.

“It is not green – it will result in an unacceptable industrialization of our precious and beautiful East Anglian landscapes over 180km.

“It will have an impact on wildlife, communities and businesses, that has not been taken into account.

“National Grid’s so-called consultation is not fit for purpose because the public and stakeholders cannot make an informed choice about the best method to bring offshore energy to Tilbury – we have had no options presented to us."

The group is fully supportive of the calls by Sir Bernard Jenkin and the Off Shore Electricity Grid Task Force (OffSET) for a strategic approach to power transmission, ideally via a properly planned offshore grid.

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Essex MP Sir Bernard, who chairs OffSET called the current plans a “no brainer”.

Bernard Jenkin, MP for Harwich and North Essex and OffSET chairman

Bernard Jenkin, MP for Harwich and North Essex and OffSET chairman - Credit: UK PARLIAMENT

He said: "What we cannot have is cheap and cheerful patchwork solutions. The current plans are a non-starter and the meeting with so many campaigners just goes to show the strength of feeling against the pylons."

The 180-mile National Grid route goes through Suffolk and into Essex, past Dedham, Langham and crossing the A12 into Tendring to connect into the site of the East Anglia Connection substation (EAC).

It then tracks west past West Bergholt and Marks Tey to the south before going on to Chelmsford and then Tilbury.

Liam Walker, project director for East Anglia GREEN said: “This reinforcement between Norwich and Tilbury is essential to carry more clean energy to homes and businesses across the UK, and to help the country reach net zero by 2050. We hope local residents will be able to join us and hear more about what we are proposing and give us their feedback on our plans.”