The final phase of transmission tower removal from the Cairngorms National Park is now under way, with work to dismantle the remaining section between Aviemore and Kingussie marked earlier today with the symbolic toppling of a tower against the spectacular backdrop of the Cairngorms Mountain Range.
The infrastructure is being removed as the final stage of the long-running Beauly-Denny project, which when planning approval was granted in 2010 included a number of commitments, including the removal of significant sections of electricity transmission lines from the Cairngorms National Park.
The initial phase of 53km of overhead line was removed from the Cairngorms National Park, east of Boat of Garten and across the Lecht to Cairnmore in Aberdeenshire, during 2011 and 2012. Work to remove the transmission towers between Boat of Garten and Kingussie began earlier this year, with the final section from Aviemore to Kingussie expected to be completed in July this year.
New underground electricity distribution cables have been installed between Aviemore and Kingussie to enable the removal of this section of overhead line, replacing its role in powering local communities.
On completion of this final section, over 300 transmission towers will have been removed from the Cairngorms National Park as part of the Beauly-Denny project, covering a distance of over 90km, resulting in over 1500 tonnes of steel for recycling.
Former Chairman of SSE and current Chairman of the Green Investment Bank, Lord Smith of Kelvin; joined SSEN’s Director of Transmission, David Gardner, key contractors, partners and members of the SSEN Beauly-Denny project team to mark the occasion.