Power lines to be removed to at South Walsham Marshes
Work is set to get underway on a major project to remove overhead power lines to improve South Walsham Marshes in Norfolk for wildlife and visitors.
UK Power Networks, which owns and operates the electricity network, delivering power to 8.3million properties across the East, South East and London, is partnering with the Broads Authority for the £750,000 project.
Starting next month [February], the company will be replacing around 2.4km of overhead power lines and installing underground cables to continue safely delivering power to the area.
As well as improving the views, the removal of the overhead lines will avoid the risk of birds striking overhead lines such as swans and geese.
The scheme is funded by a special allowance, granted by electricity industry regulator Ofgem, to improve the landscape in Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and National Parks.
The Broads National Park covers more than 300sq km in total. The area is famous for its wildlife and is home to a quarter of the UK’s rarest species.
South Walsham Marshes is used as seasonal grazing land with water levels next to the River Bure kept purposely high to make it an ideal habitat for birds such as common cranes.
UK Power Networks project manager Ian Robinson said: “This important project will effectively declutter what is a very natural and quiet piece of marshland near Pilson Green village.
“It is a popular area with a number of footpaths and used for boating so the work we are doing with the support of the Broads Authority will enhance the location hugely as well as making it a safer environment for the birds and other animals.
“This work will require brief interruptions to power supplies in March to a small number of local properties, but we will keep any disruption to a minimum and this project should make supplies to properties more reliable in the longer term.”
Will Burchnall, project manager for the Broads Authority, said: ““We are delighted to work with UK Power Networks on this project.
“Removing the old power lines will have an immediate impact to improve the beauty of an area within the Broads National park which is so important for wildlife.”