The final steel transmission tower to be removed from the Cairngorms National Park as part of the Beauly-Denny project has now been successfully toppled, against the spectacular backdrop of the historical Ruthven Barracks site.
The removal of the infrastructure was made possible as part of the 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.
Over 300 transmission towers have now been removed from the Cairngorms National Park, covering a distance of over 90km, resulting in over 1500 tonnes of steel for recycling, with the Cairngorms National Park now largely free of electricity transmission infrastructure.
Cairngorms National Park Chief Executive, Grant Moir, joined SSEN’s Project Director, Alastair Brand, to witness the event.
“A whole swathe of the park now has no towers within it at all. Most of the 4,500km2 of the park no longer has any towers and this has opened up the views of the Cairngorms for people to enjoy.”
“This is the last of over 300 towers that we have taken down in the Cairngorms over the last seven years as a result of the Beauly-Denny project, with this significant milestone representing the completion of all major works associated with the project
“The Beauly-Denny project provided a unique opportunity to look again at the existing infrastructure within the Cairngorms National Park and through a number of planning conditions that were agreed during the planning process, we have been able to remove significant sections of existing transmission infrastructure from the Cairngorms National Park, delivering a lasting legacy for current and future generations.”
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 now complete.
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.