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Funding sought to bury Cairngorm overhead power lines

shutterstock cairngorms national park

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has submitted two funding applications to Ofgem in the Cairngorms National Park to bury 12km overhead power lines.

SSEN has submitted two funding applications to Ofgem which aim to reduce the visual impact of SSEN’s existing transmission infrastructure in two locations within the Cairngorms National Park.

Ofgem is responsible for administering a £500M fund for GB electricity transmission owners to mitigate the impact of existing electricity infrastructure in National Parks and National Scenic Areas.

SSEN is taking forward a number of engineering and landscaping proposals across its network region as part of its Vista (Visual Impact of Scottish Transmission Assets) project.

The first Cairngorm Vista proposal would remove 15 steel lattice towers and approximately 4km of overhead line between Docharn and the Boat of Garten substation.

The second scheme would remove a further 31 steel lattice towers and approximately 8km of overhead line between the Boat of Garten substation and Craigmore Wood, to the north of Nethy Bridge.

Commenting on the submission SSEN’s Project Vista Euan Smith said: “We are delighted to have submitted our Cairngorms National Park Vista proposals to Ofgem for consideration.

“If regulatory funding is approved for both schemes, this innovative project will result in the removal of an additional 46 historic transmission towers within the National Park’s boundary covering a combined distance of 12km.

“We would like to thank all of those who have inputted into the development process so far and look forward to continued engagement with Ofgem and other interested stakeholders as we seek to further improve the visual impact of our existing infrastructure in Scotland’s most valuable landscapes.”

Cairngorms National Park Authority CEO Grant Moir added: “We have been working with SSE on these projects and are pleased to see that these applications have now been submitted. They will build on the good work that has already taken place following the construction of the Beauly to Denny line, where some 300 towers were taken down within the Cairngorms National Park.

”The projects will result in nearly all the line in Strathspey being removed and it will make a significant improvement to the visual impact of the landscapes for the millions of visitors who come to the National Park every year.”

Approval of SSEN’s two Cairngorm Vista schemes would see almost all historical overhead transmission infrastructure removed from the National Park.

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