March 11, 2015
Burnham's MP steps up calls for 'mega pylons' plan to be rejected

Burnham-On-Sea's MP has this week stepped up her calls for National Grid's controversial 'mega pylons' proposals to be rejected and thrown out.

Writing to the Planning Inspectorate as it undertakes the final stage of its planning process, Tessa Munt says that National Grid has failed to explore and cost alternative technologies.

"This is madness. National Grid is required to look at alternatives to pylons to meet the basic requirements of National Planning statements," she said.

"It's obvious that a line of 110 foot pylons across the Levels is going to stand out, and spoil views across beautiful open countryside. National Grid have to look at the costs and benefits of other means of transmission yet National Grid operate as if there are no alternatives."

The new Hinkley Point C power station will need to be connected to the National Grid at Avonmouth and the company is planning to use new 36-metre tall T-shaped pylons instead of traditional pylons, as pictured here.

The 400,000 volt power connection will run through the Burnham area. Despite calls for the line to be buried underground, National Grid says the 37-mile line will run overground for much of the route. Local campaigners continue to demand that National Grid considers going underground, or sub-sea under the Bristol Channel.

Tessa Munt says she is particularly concerned at the impact of the pylons on the most directly affected communities. "I have to praise the detailed representations of the three most affected parish councils – Badgworth, Compton Bishop, and Mark. I commend the thoroughness of unpaid councillors in representing the impact of this complex project on their communities, and challenging the proposal."

She added: "It is hard to believe that Hinkley C will be producing electricity before 2025, and so I wonder what the rush is to get this process concluded when, critically, alternative technology will become more certain, and costs will reduce, with time."

Tessa - and Conservative election candidate James Heappey plus campaigners - will be speaking at an open meeting to be held in Mark next Tuesday evening, 17th March.


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