Power plant set to be built on field south of Sudbury

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National Grid has announced a site south of Sudbury on the A131 as the preferred location for its new electricity substation.

After a consultation, the company says it will be building the substation on a two-and-a-half acre field off the main road from Sudbury to Halstead near Gestingthorpe.

It is to be located at a place called Butler’s Wood and Waldegrave Wood, and National Grid says it has chosen the “well-screened” site from a list of eight potential sites, although the public were only consulted on three of them.

Brian Smethurst, senior project manager for National Grid, said: “Following public consultation earlier this year, we are proposing to site the new substation on a field with an existing 400,000 volt overhead line running through it.”

He said listening to residents’ views has played an important part in choosing the site.

“We have consulted extensively with residents and specialist bodies, and have listened to their concerns on a wide range of issues from the landscape and ecology to heritage and transport,” he said. “The site is already well screened by two large areas of woodland, with scope for more landscaping.”

The substation is part of a wider overhead line and underground cable connection project and the company said the substation is needed as part of a proposed 400,000 volt overhead line and underground cable connection between Bramford, near Ipswich, and Twinstead.

National Grid plans to take down more than 25 kilometres of an existing lower voltage line, including 83 smaller pylons, with plans to bury cables in some areas including an area of outstanding natural beauty near Hadleigh.

The company said that it had considered including a project to bury cables to its existing substation near Braintree as part of the consultation, with high costs ruling it out.