Anger at ESC's changed position on Scottish Power windfarm plans

East Suffolk Council - Moving to neutral position on EA1N & EA2 proposals

SASES has been contacted by numerous residents in Friston and the surrounding area, many expressing anger at East Suffolk Councils changed position on Scottish Powers wind farm plans. There is huge frustration with the councils sudden about face and local residents cannot understand what exactly has changed. Grove Wood Friston the location where Scottish Power is proposing to build substations was previously described by the council as a wrong choice and unsuitable.

Understandably people want to know why the council appears to have moved its position, many in the surrounding communities directly impacted on by Scottish Power’s proposals say a neutral position shows a lack of knowledge within cabinet of SPRs intransigence on the major issues.

How can ESC say they are moving to a neutral position when the major issues are largely unchanged?
What has ESC achieved in terms of Grove Wood to make this location acceptable? 

The issues of flooding, noise and the fact the substations are too close to Friston village have not gone away. The fact that substations are proposed on a green field site that will set a precedence for Friston and the surrounding countryside to become host to other energy infrastructure.

East Suffolk Council are letting local residents down and failing in their remit as custodians of the AONB protected landscapes….we won’t bring up the subject of Sizewell C but ESC also have a neutral position on Sizewell C.

East Suffolk Council should be calling for SPR to provide missing elements of these DCOs:

– Provision of a full and comprehensive Cumulative Impact Assessment in the words of SPR on a “Worst Case Scenario” looking at the impact of multiple wind farm projects and a potential Sizewell C development .
– Seeking provision of a local tourism and business survey (independently verified).
– Seeking correction of SPRs flawed submissions on substation noise output (with independent verification).
– Pushing for SPR to carry out and supply a full independently verified flood risk assessment of the substation site and assessment that also includes for flooding due to run-off / pluvial flooding on and around the Grove Wood site and down into Friston.

If this region is to produce more offshore wind energy than the whole of Scotland, we urgently need an ambitiously run authority to stand up to energy companies to stand up for the AONB and our rural communities, not one that turns neutral for financial mitigation.

Taking the added issue of Sizwell C into account, this small area will not cope with all that is being proposed!


You can watch the recorded cabinet meeting using the embedded video here and the meeting notes are available via the link below:

Details of the councils cabinet meeting including recommendations (page 34 onwards) can be viewed here >>>

The Green party again provide the most coherent voice and a real desire to scrutinise energy proposals for a least damaging solution. We thank councillors Rachel Smith-Lyte and Graham Elliott for their efforts in cabinet meetings during this lengthy planning process. 

SASES will write to the council for clarification as there do not appear to be any significant changes to the cable route or substation proposals that would warrant such a softening in position.