Project Type: Transmission reinforcement
Location: Aberdeenshire, Perth & Kinross, Angus

Contact Details

Liaison Manager

Louise Anderson
Title: Community Liaison Manager
Telephone: 07384 454233
Address: Inveralmond House, 200 Dunkeld Road, Perth, PH1 3AQ

Land Manager

Robin Cameron
Title: Land Manager
Mobile: 07500 912921
Address: Inveralmond House, 200 Dunkeld Perth, PH1 3AQ
Status: Construction Phase

About the Project

The East Coast onshore 275kV upgrade is the first part of the phased onshore reinforcement on the East Coast. These onshore reinforcements comprise works on existing infrastructure in both the SSEN Transmission and Scottish Power Transmission (SPT) area, with the bulk of the works in the SSEN Transmission area.

The main advantage of a two-stage approach is that this allows for earlier delivery of increased capacity on the network in this region. This will also help resolve the issue of overloading and congestion on the transmission network.

The East Coast steel lattice towers and the overhead lines (OHLs) which they support are currently operating at 275kV.  The projected growth in generation capacity within the SSEN Transmission area gives rise to increased north to south power transfer requirements and therefore the OHLs are required to transfer more power. As a result the conductors will operate at an elevated temperature. The elevated temperature can cause the conductors to sag. As a responsible operator we have modelled the future sag and under this project will undertake works to ensure the conductors remain within a safe clearance height.

The works required are termed as re-profiling works, where works such as vegetation clearance or changing of fittings on some towers, to raise the conductor will be undertaken. This will ensure safe clearance between the ground and the conductor is maintained.



Progress Gallery

A selection of photographs taken on site documenting the project construction progress of phase 1 which consists of overhead line works associated with the new Alyth substation that is currently in construction.

Why is the Project Required?

As part of its statutory and transmission licence obligations, SSEN Transmission has a number of duties including:

  • the development and maintenance of an efficient, coordinated and economical system of electricity transmission,
  • to facilitate competition in the supply and generation of electricity, and
  • to ensure that the security of the network is maintained as the demand and/or generation connections change over time.

SSEN Transmission has a licence obligation to invest in its existing assets to maintain network health and condition. SSEN Transmission also has a statutory duty under the Electricity Safety, Quality and Continuity Regulations 2002 to ensure that the electricity transmission network is fit for purpose.

The National Electricity Transmission System Security and Quality of Supply Standard (NETS SQSS) provides the deterministic criteria that SSEN Transmission must use to plan and design the transmission system. The criteria require that there are neither equipment overloads nor voltage violations under intact conditions. The criteria also require that there is no unacceptable overloading of any primary transmission equipment or unacceptable voltage conditions under planned or unplanned outage conditions.

Our Approach

Throughout the life of our projects, we aim to work positively with local communities and keep people informed about what we are doing. This is particularly important when we are developing a proposal and we want to understand what local people think about our plans.

We endeavour to take the time to discuss proposals with local community councils, encourage engagement from the wider community and listen to the feedback we receive.

We will do our best to answer any questions and address issues or concerns that are raised with us.

When our project progresses into construction, we will continue working closely with the local community to ensure that our work has as little impact on the lives of those living and working in the area and as many long term positive effects as possible.

Recite Me

To support everyone online, we provide accessibility and language options on our website through ‘Recite Me’. The accessibility and language support options provided by ‘Recite Me’ include text-to-speech functionality, fully customisable styling features, reading aids, and a translation tool with over 100 languages, including 35 text-to-speech. Please select “Accessibility” on our website to try out our inclusive toolbar.

To make use of this function please click on the 'accessibility' button at the top right of the website. 

The data in this map is provided for indicative purposes only and may be subject to change. Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission plc do not accept responsibility for its accuracy, completeness or validity. The data should not be copied, reproduced or utilised externally without permission.

Who is Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks?

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks is the trading name of Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution Limited, Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission plc, Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution plc and Southern Electric Power Distribution plc.

How are Transmission network upgrades paid for?

Investments in projects are made by SHE Transmission plc. Electricity transmission companies are authorised to recover the costs of such investments through 'use of system' charges which are levied by National Grid Electricity Transmission plc on generators and suppliers of electricity. Suppliers recover their costs from all electricity customers. In order to protect the interests of customers, the transmission companies have to demonstrate to the energy regulator, Ofgem (Office for Gas and Electricity Markets) that proposed investments are necessary, are efficient and are economical so that the charges which are ultimately levied on all electricity customers are justified.

This means SHE Transmission is subject to a funding mechanism established by Parliament and regulated by Ofgem. Cross subsidies between different businesses in the SSE group is not permitted.

How are proposals scrutinised?

The Scottish Ministers are responsible for determination of applications submitted under Section 37 of the Electricity Act 1989. Both statutory consultees and members of the public have the right to submit their representations on the application. All representations will be considered by Scottish Ministers in their determination of the application.
The Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), as the regulator, has to approve all investment so project proposals are developed under license conditions.
Preferred route corridors chosen will comply with revised ‘Holford Rules’ which are the recognised industry approach to routeing overhead lines amended to reflect Scottish circumstances.

How and to what extent are electricity consumers' interests considered?

SHE Transmission are regulated by the Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), the regulator responsible for representing consumers' interests. Electricity consumer interests are therefore one of our key drivers and this is enshrined in our statutory duties under the Electricity Act.

In particular we have a statutory duty to develop, maintain and operate an efficient, economic and co-ordinated transmission system. Since the costs of these projects will ultimately be paid for by electricity consumers, we have a responsibility to take cost into account with due weighting in a comparison against other important factors.

What is the transmission network?

It’s the highest voltage electricity network in the UK – the ‘motorway network’ of the energy world. It transmits large quantities of electricity over long distances via wires carried on a system of mainly metal towers (pylons) and large substations. Transmission voltages in Scotland are 132kV, 275kV and 400kV. Larger generation schemes usually connect to the Transmission system.

The lower voltage parts of the system are called distribution networks. In Scotland, these local networks operate below 132kV whereas in England the distribution network includes 132kV. 

Project Update - March 2022

The 2021 and 2022 OHL works associated with connecting the new Alyth substation to the national grid are now complete. Reprofiling works on the final circuits between Tealing and Alyth are also complete. The next big milestone for the OHL works will be the final tie-ins required to connect the new towers that were erected in 2021 into Alyth substation which are due to be carried out in June 2023.

Project Update - December 2021

The 3 new towers required to connect the overhead lines from Fetteresso, Kincardine and Tealing into the new Alyth substation which is currently in construction near Meigle are complete as well as the reconductoring works on the Kincardine-Fetteresso circuits. Reconductoring works on the final circuits between Tealing and Alyth continue. The tie-ins required to connect the new towers into Alyth substation are due to be carried out in June 2023. Our Principal Contractor Balfour Beatty will demobilise from site for the festive period from 23rd December and start back on 11th January.

Project Update - August 2021

Following the mobilisation of our Principal Contractor, Balfour Beatty, for the commencement of Lot 1 works on the East Coast 275kV overhead line project and with works now starting on Lot 2 of the project, we wanted to provide an update on how activities on site were progressing. Our Lot 1 works, which comprise of the overhead line works associated with connecting the new Alyth substation that is currently in construction, are progressing well and remain on programme. To date, Balfour Beatty have completed the erection of the two temporary towers required to create a temporary bypass. Both towers are located adjacent to the existing overhead line. This bypass is required to enable the new permanent towers to be constructed. Two of the three new towers that will be constructed as part of this project will be erected on the existing overhead line alignment. Works have also now commenced on the first of these three new towers, with half of the foundations completed and we anticipate foundation works for the second new tower to begin imminently. Lot 2 works are also now underway with several towers at various locations having earth resistance tests on tower footings carried out. These works consist of connecting an electrode to the tower leg and another 30m out from the tower to a grounded spike to test and ensure good earth grounding through the tower foundation. This is to ensure that no induced current can build up on the tower steelwork. Upcoming works for Lot 2 include tightening up of the bottom conductors on a number of towers to achieve electrical clearance between the ground and the conductor as well as midspan joint testing and tension tower resistivity and re-compression works. These works entail testing the electrical resistance through existing compression joints on the overhead line wires (Conductors) to make sure there are no hot spots in the joints caused by tiny gaps.

Progress Gallery

We have created a progress gallery on the project overview page of this website which shows a selection of photographs taken on site documenting the project construction progress. These currently show progress for phase 1 works which consists of the overhead line works associated with the new Alyth substation that is currently in construction.
Project overview

Construction Mobilisation

Our Principal Contractor; Balfour Beatty, will next month begin to set up their site compound in order to commence the start of construction on the first phase of the East Coast 275kV overhead line upgrade project. The site will be close to the U100 just outside Meigle in Perthshire. Phase 1 consists of overhead line works associated with the new Alyth substation, the construction of which commences in June.

Project Update

Works will be undertaken to re-profile 185km of the existing 275kV overhead line between Kintore and Fetteresso and the 275kV overhead line between Tealing and Alyth. The project will also re-profile 36km of the existing 275kV overhead line between Tealing and the SSEN Transmission/SPT border. The re-profiling works will consist of tightening and adjusting the wires (conductors), as well as a programme of vegetation clearance to ensure that the safety distance from the wires to the ground is adequate for safety. As part of this project SSEN Transmission are also looking to construct three new towers on land just outside of Meigle to accommodate a connection to the proposed new Alyth substation. All necessary consents have now been secured by SSEN Transmission and the works will be delivered in a phased manner between April 2021 and October 2023.

East Coast 275kV & 400kV Overhead Line Reinforcement Booklet

Related Projects: East Coast 275kV OHL Upgrade, East Coast 400kV OHL Upgrade

File Type: pdf
Published: 07 Apr 2021
North East 400kV & Eastern Reinforcements (Nov 2019)

Related Projects: Alyth 275kV Substation & Reactive Compensation, East Coast 275kV OHL Upgrade, East Coast 400kV OHL Upgrade, Kintore 400kV Substation, North East 400kV, Peterhead Substation, New Deer Substation, Rothienorman Substation, Tealing Substation Extension

File Type: pdf
Published: 19 May 2020

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