Sizewell C project chief ‘conscious’ of frustration at consultation wait

Stephen Walls, head of the Sizewell C Project gives an update on the project at the Suffolk Show.

Stephen Walls, head of the Sizewell C Project gives an update on the project at the Suffolk Show.

Developers of a third nuclear power station on the county’s coast used the Suffolk Show as an opportunity to provide an update on progress.

Stephen Walls, head of the Sizewell C project, told a reception in the President’s Marquee that consultation remained at an early stage and that further progress hinged on developments at EDF’s Hinkley Point C project in Somerset.

There was no news on when stage two of consultation was likely to begin. The second stage is expected to give final details of issues such as road improvements, worker accommodation and park-and-ride sites.

Recent uncertainty over progress turned into frustration earlier in the year when it became clear that the next formal stage of consultation on the project would not take place until after the election.

Mr Walls last night said: “There has been a little frustration that the second stage hasn’t yet occurred. We are conscious of that, but all things come through Hinkley Point. We very much hope that remaining issues around financing and infrastructure are resolved in the coming months, and that we are able to take matters forward with more pace here at Sizewell.

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“Needless to say, we have not been stood idle. We have carried out a number of investigations and studies to make sure we can do our best by the local community, the environment and the wider area.”

There was also an update on plans to convert farmland on the northern outskirts of Leiston into a wildlife haven that will include internationally important habitat types.

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The plan for Aldhurst Farm, bounded by Leiston’s Carr Avenue and Valley Road to the south, Abbey Road to the west and Lovers Lane to the north and east, involves 60 hectares of heath and acid grassland.

Mr Walls said that work will “begin in earnest” next month.

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