England

Overhead power lines in Waveney Valley prompt fears

Overhead power lines bringing in electricity from wind farms off the coast of Lowestoft could destroy the look of a Norfolk and Suffolk beauty spot, a council has warned.

South Norfolk Council is to lobby the National Grid to bring in the electricity via underground cables.

The council fears overhead power lines could be sited near the tourist area the Waveney Valley.

National Grid said any plans were in their very early stages.

'Protected for generations'

It added that options were being considered and any decision would follow a major consultation exercise which would start in spring next year at the earliest.

South Norfolk Council has called a meeting on 21 October to bring together two county councils, three district councils and town and parish councils on both sides of the River Waveney border between the two counties.

South Norfolk councillors are also inviting local people to join the meeting to have their say.

The Conservative-controlled council's deputy leader Martin Wilby said: "Anyone anywhere who cares about one of England's loveliest river valleys will not want to see pylons there when such obvious alternatives exist to protect the natural beauty of this landscape.

"The Waveney Valley is one of East Anglia's most beautiful natural landscapes - an area unspoiled and protected for generations.

'Full consultation'

"The very thought of what two lines of giant pylons would look like stretched along both banks of one of the most beautiful river valleys in England is unacceptable."

He said he wanted to start talks with the National Grid.

Sara Wilcox, a spokeswoman for the National Grid, said the process to decide on how to bring in the power was in its "very early stages".

"At the moment we are investigating all the options to get the power connected to our system," she said.

"Once the options are ready there will be a full consultation."

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