£18 million project to overhaul power network between Malton and Whitby

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More than 100 pylons will be pulled down and 20km of underground cable installed as part of a multi-million pound overhaul of the electricity network between Malton and Whitby.

Northern Powergrid says its ambitious £18 million project, which starts this week, will improve the quality and reliability of electricity for thousands of local people.

As part of the replacement of the existing overhead power lines, 20kms of underground cable will be installed along the A169 through the North York Moors National Park and 108 towers dismantled - also helping ti improve the views across the outstanding area of natural beauty.

However, the work is complicated by the fact that around 60 per cent of the cable route is located within the North York Moors Special Area of conservation and North York Moors Special Protection Area.

The area is protected due to the presence of rare and vulnerable habitat including dry heath, wet heath and blanket bog. It is also home to a large number of species of importance including breeding Golden Plover, Merlin, Short-eared Owl, Peregrine Falcon, Hen Harrier, Redshank and Curlew.

Northern Powergrid has employed ecological consultants from ADAS UK Ltd and liaised closely with Natural England and The North York Moors National Park to try and avoid any significant disturbance to important habitats and species as well as the wider environment.

It has also worked with the local authority to ensure traffic management is managed as effectively as possible to minimise disruption for residents and tourists as much as possible. There are also no plans to disrupt customers’ electricity supplies during the work.

Carl Bandeira, Northern Powergrid’s project manager, said: “This is a major investment by Northern Powergrid in both the reliability of the power supply between Malton and Whitby for local residents and enhancing the beautiful natural landscape of the North York Moor National Park for the future.

“We’ll continue to work with Natural England and The North York Moors National Park throughout the project to ensure this area of significant beauty and environmental importance is treated with the respect it deserves.

“Once we’ve completed installation of the underground cable network and carried out modification works at both Thornton Dale and Whitby substations, we will remove the 108 towers. This will help provide more uninterrupted, natural views for local people and tourists of the stunning scenery this moorland landscape is famous for.”

“While we carry out this vital investment project there will be some disruption to traffic along the A169 between the Fox and Rabbit pub at Lockton and Blue Bank car parking areas at Sleights. We’re making every effort to reduce the impact and keep residents and businesses informed of our progress.”

Work is expected to be completed by October next year.

The first phase of the work began on the A169, north of the Fox and Rabbit pub, Lockton, on Monday. Some disruption is expected along the road between the pub and Blue Bank at Sleights.

Northern Powergrid say the project is expected to be completed by October next year.