SSE causes concern after deadline missed

The West Aberdeenshire Pylon Action (WAPA) group has been set up by residents concerned about the SSE plans
The West Aberdeenshire Pylon Action (WAPA) group has been set up by residents concerned about the SSE plans

Scottish and Southern Electricity (SSE) have created uncertainty and concern across Aberdeenshire communities regarding their proposals to install a new pylon line.

SSE have delayed their promised report on public consultation carried out between October 2015 and May 2016.

The report will now be published in early August and SSE say the delay will not disrupt the overall project timeline which will see a precise route being identified next year and construction undertaken between 2020 and 2024.

Communities across West Aberdeenshire have come together to form the West Aberdeenshire Pylon Action (WAPA) group with the aim of influencing Scottish Southern Electricity to look at alternative options for the proposed Blackhillock to Kintore reinforcement power line.

The project could see 50m high pylons placed through some of the area’s most iconic landscape including around Tap o’Noth, Dunnideer and Bennachie.

Concerns have been expressed throughout the community about the possible impact on health, wildlife, visual landscape, house prices, tourism and historical heritage.

“SSE have held a number of consultation meetings during the course of last year but they have not offered up any alternatives or real mitigations for communities to consider,” said WAPA chairman Bill Henderson.

“The consultation process was a mess, with several affected communities left unaware of the impact of this project on their area and the fact that have now delayed publication on their findings is unacceptable in our view.”

Objections have been lodged by many in the community, including the National Trust which is concerned that several of its properties in the area could be impacted.

WAPA, whose area currently covers Huntly to Kintore, are keen to encourage local people to let SSE know their views.

For more details on the plans or to contact SSE visit www.ssepd.co.uk/BeaulyBlackhillockKintore.