Welcome to our dedicated page for landowners and tenants whose land interests are potentially directly affected by our proposed project.

Below you can see how our project would interact with your land by watching our fly-through video and explore a Q&A of frequently asked questions we’ve received from landowners.

Please note, if your land interests would be directly impacted by our project, then you will have been contacted by our team.

If you have any queries about our project, please get in touch with our community relations team. You can email the team at [email protected].

How long will National Grid need a construction compound for during the project’s five-year construction period (2024 -2029)?

The overall construction duration from 2024 to 2029 is for the entire project. There won’t be construction activity everywhere along the underground cable route for that entire period. The durations that individual temporary compounds will be in place for will vary.

We will have more information about works in each specific location when a main works contractor is appointed and when the detailed construction programme has been worked through with the contractor. As a general principle, we will schedule the sequencing of construction works in the most efficient way, to minimise the duration that works are on site and length of time that temporary construction compounds need to be in place for.

As is National Grid’s best practice we will keep landowners and their agents informed as the detailed construction programme is developed with the main works contractor.

Will the works be completed section-by-section or the entire length at once?

The sequence for the construction works is to be confirmed, but we will have an understanding of this once the main works contractor has been appointed. We will keep landowners and their agents informed as to the detailed construction programme.

When will the Councils make decisions on the planning applications?

Planning applications have been submitted to and accepted by East Riding of Yorkshire Council (reference 22/01990/STPLFE) and Selby District Council (reference 2022/0711/EIA). The applications are publicly available. Both planning authorities are continuing to accept consultation responses from statutory consultees and other interested parties. No dates have been set for when either application will be heard by committee.

Where does the compulsory purchase order (CPO) stand at this point?

In line with the CPO Guidance, we are preparing a CPO in parallel with the voluntary negotiation of land rights. We anticipate that the CPO will be made in January 2023 and submitted to the Secretary of State for confirmation. A Public Inquiry would take place if objections to the CPO are received and not resolved. We’re committed to seeking voluntary land rights where possible, but would prefer to get everything documented by agreement, and the submission of the CPO is after Christmas for this reason.

Why is the Option Period five years?

The Option Period is for five years to ensure the most proportionate approach to land rights acquisition. The structure of the documents allows for the permanent easement to cover the “as built” infrastructure, following a process which will include the detailed survey and design of the cable route. Temporary construction rights will initially be taken over a wider area. The option period covers the anticipated construction programme to allow construction to be completed and for the cable to be operational by 2029.

Why can’t the payment split percentage rates be more aligned to the 90% advance payments made for other infrastructure schemes?

We consider the payment splits as proposed to be equitable, reflecting the larger extent of construction rights covered by the option, with the 25% reflecting the grant of permanent rights when the final easement is drawn down. The payment structure reflects that which is being offered on other schemes.

Why is an Option Fee not included?

We are offering a payment of 80% of Market Value of the land and a 20% incentive payment (subject to time restrictions), so equivalent to 100% of the land strip value, and will only be acquiring permanent rights, not the freehold of the land, so the landowner will still be able to use this for normal agricultural purposes. On this basis, we will not be paying any additional Option Fee.

Will more details be added to the Heads of Terms (HoTs) document to expand on the easement / Option / lease terms? The exact Easement Terms need to be made clear to landowners as the Deed of Grant is very detailed, but HoT’s only have a few clauses.

The main terms of the easement document / Option are set out in the HoTs. Landowners’ Solicitors will be sent legal documentation once instructed so that this can be completed between the parties based on the details provided by the landowner /agent.

Can the wording: “Activities are not limited to” on the easement restrictions that National Grid will impose on the Option land area be clarified and expanded so landowners know what they can and cannot do for the five-year Option Period?

During the Option Period, normal agricultural operations, such as the growing of shallow rooted crops or the grazing of livestock, will not be prevented. The Landowner covenants not to do or permit to be done anything which may limit, qualify or interfere with the rights to be granted to National Grid under the Cable Easement terms. The landowner will therefore be restricted from erecting any building, structure, plant or machinery or the of planting of any bushes or trees or similar vegetation within the proposed Easement Strip during the Option Period.

Could National Grid review the compound payment rates being proposed as these were not considered to be reflective of Market Value paid by other infrastructure providers?

We are currently reviewing the stated rates within the Heads of Terms document based on other similar schemes where linear infrastructure projects have required compounds for several years on agricultural land, without the benefit of services. We will consider any evidence of rent paid for compounds on agricultural land by acquiring authorities acting with statutory powers in the background.

Will the Scheme’s timings slip as there is not a contractor in place? If so, what would become of changes being made before/after they were appointed as the current construction start date timeframe is too tight if there is no contractor already in place?

The project is currently going through the tendering stage. The programme is for contract award in early 2024. The construction works are due to be carried out in the period between contract award and the energisation of the cables in 2029, with completion of any remaining reinstatement works on completion of the energisation works. We have significantexperience of projects of these types and consider that the areas over which rights are sought include a broad enough corridor to encompass any likely changes to the indicative design, to allow the appointed contractor to undertake detailed design works. We have engaged with suppliers as part of the development of the project and subsequent tendering phase that the project is currently within.

Why can’t the cables be buried to a minimum depth of 1.2m to the top of the protective tile, instead of the 900mm as specified by National Grid?

The greater depth will impact on the thermal ratings rather than the system design calculations. Any increase in depth has an impact on the amount of power that can flow through the cable (rating capability). For increased depth of burial, the spacing between the cables needs to be increased which in turn increases the amount of material to be excavated and stored. as well as the amount of new stabilised material that needs to be imported.

In extreme circumstances the increase depth could impact on the overall size of cable/number of cables (with implications of an additional trench) required to compensate for the increased depth of cover. 

Please see extract below from the Energy Networks Association (ENA) guidance in relation to cable depth that will be followed by National Grid for this scheme:

 ENA Engineering Recommendation G57
Issue 2 2019
Page 8

4.2 Depth of Cover

All new cables (except service cables) of any voltage shall be laid with a cover depth of not less than 910mm when laid across agriculture land.

This depth requirement takes account of the wishes of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), to safeguard farmers and/or employees by minimising the risk of striking cables during their farming activities. It is recommended that ENA Member Companies treat this as a minimum requirement and should consider laying the cable at a depth that locates the cable warning tape, protection tape or protection tiles at a depth of at least 900mm to ensure that the integrity of the full cable installation is not placed at risk. In accordance with the requirements of ENA TS09-2 [92], the cable warning tapes/tiles shall be at a minimum of 75mm above the topmost cable in the trench, as indicated in Figure 1.

Depth of cover

 

Will National Grid pay agent’s fees in relation to any representations they have made on behalf of clients to the planning application / Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) application?

We will pay reasonable agents’ fees for the negotiation of the heads of terms/documentation required to secure voluntary agreements, or in negotiation of compensation payments where land is acquired under a CPO.

We will not pay agents’ fees incurred in making representations and/or objections to the planning application or the CPO. This is detailed in Payment of Surveyors’ fees Version 6 – as provided to agents. We consider that it is important that this is explained to landowners by their agents so that landowners are aware of the extent of costs they may incur in making representations in respect of the planning application or the CPO.

Will National Grid pay abortive agent’s fees of the scheme was cancelled?

This is detailed in Payment of Surveyors’ fees Version 6 – as provided to agents.

Why is only £1,000 of agent’s fees to be paid on signing of Heads of Terms (HoTs) and the balance on the Option Agreement being signed, rather than all fees at signing of HoTs stage?

We have committed to reimburse agents fees up to £1,000 on signing of the HoTs. If fees above this threshold are incurred and are considered to be reasonable and justified, then the balance will be paid on completing the Option Agreement. We do envisage some liaison between the agent and the landowner’s solicitor in the preparation of the Option agreement, and hence additional fees will be incurred post signing of the HoTs.

Why were boreholes with piezometers removed after only eight weeks of water level monitoring during the driest summer on record? What useful data had been recorded from them as they were expected to be left in situ for at least 12 months?

The initial ground investigation works were designed to gather short-term groundwater data to provide main works tenderers, with an indication of groundwater profiles and water-bearing strata. Groundwater monitoring installations typically comprise standard standpipe construction rather than piezometers.

When does the time frame for Voluntary agreement commence?

The timeframe will commence upon issue of the Heads of Terms to landowners.

The 20-week timeframe for Voluntary agreement is not considered achievable and ignores the three-week downtime for Christmas. Is National Grid able to increase the timeframe?

We acknowledge that the incentive period will straddle the Christmas holiday shut down and will therefore extend this period to 23 weeks. This will be documented in the Heads of Terms and covering letter.