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A green and yellow field landscape with trees and a clear blue sky - Bramford to Twinstead transmission connection project

New Essential Infrastructure

Bramford to Twinstead

East of England

We are amid an energy revolution and National Grid has a central role to play in this fast-changing energy landscape.

The UK has set a clear ambition for our country to be a global leader in clean energy. The Government has set a commitment to reach Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and an ambition to connect 40 GW of offshore wind by 2030 – enough energy to power every home in the country.

To achieve this, offshore wind is being developed at scale and around 60% of the current offshore wind projects will come ashore along the East Coast.

Couple this with new nuclear generation proposed at Sizewell C and greater interconnection with countries across the North Sea, and we expect to see a significant increase in the level of renewable and low carbon electricity generation connecting in East Anglia.

While our existing high voltage electricity network in East Anglia has been sufficient until today, it doesn’t have the capability needed to reliably and securely transport all the energy that will be connected by 2030 while working to the required standards.

In the first half of this decade we are investing significantly in upgrading the existing network, but that still won’t deliver the capability that is needed by the end of the decade. We need to reinforce the region’s electricity network to address this, including between Bramford and Twinstead.

We need to strengthen the network here to increase the network capability in the region to carry the clean green energy that is proposed in East Anglia. It will play a vital role in delivering electricity efficiently, reliably, and safely and will support the UK’s move to reduce carbon emissions.

Bramford to Twinstead project website regional network map Spring 2021

Project background

We first carried out work to develop proposals for this additional network capability between 2009 and 2013. Changes to when the planned new generation would come online in East Anglia meant that work was put on hold at the end of 2013.

Network studies now show that we will need the reinforcement to be in place before the end of the decade. We now need to start work again to take forward the proposals.

Our proposals

We need to increase the capability of this part of the network by building a 29km 400,000 volt (400 kV) electricity reinforcement between Bramford and Twinstead Tee.

Before the previous work was put on hold, our proposals were shaped by extensive consultation feedback and our evaluation up to that point. At the time work was paused, around 20km of the route was proposed as overhead line and approximately 9km as underground cables.

Two sections were identified for underground cables – one in Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and one in the Stour Valley where an AONB extension is proposed. Cable sealing ends – four in total – would be needed to make the transition from overhead line to underground cable.

To make way for the proposed 400kV reinforcement, approximately 26km of UKPN’s existing 132 kV overhead electricity distribution line would be removed between Burstall Bridge and Twinstead Tee. A new substation was also proposed next to Butlers Wood, west of Twinstead, to keep the local network supplied when the section of 132kV line is removed.

A small section of existing 400 kV overhead line would also be removed south of Twinstead Tee near Alphamstone.

Bramford to Twinstead project website route map Spring 2021
Public consultation

As we take forward work again to develop our plans, we want to keep everyone informed and to hear people’s views on our proposals.

In spring 2021, we will set out more information. We want to hear your views and will ask members of the public, as well as other statutory stakeholders, to provide feedback on what we are proposing.

In line with current government guidelines, we don't expect to be able to host face-to-face events, but we will use both digital and traditional consultation methods to ensure everyone can view the information and take part in our consultation.

We will provide details of the proposals, the arrangements for consultation and publish all information on our project website at the start of consultation. If restrictions relating to the pandemic permit, paper copies of key project documents will be made available to view in publicly accessible buildings along the route.

You will also have the option to chat to us online or over the phone and we will post out information on request.

Our consultation in Spring will be followed by further consultation on detailed proposals before we apply for consent in 2022.

Please come back toward the end of March 2021 to find out more and to get involved in our consultation.

Development Consent Order (DCO)

Before we can reinforce the network between Bramford and Twinstead, we will need planning permission.

We will apply for a Development Consent Order. This is a particular type of planning approval for a nationally significant infrastructure project. The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), will make the final decision on the application following a public examination managed by an independent panel of inspectors. This process can take up to 18 months. For more information, visit the Planning Inspectorate’s website

Bramford to Twinstead project website route map Spring 2021

We are committed to making project information accessible to all users. If you need any information or documents in an alternative format such as large print, Braille or audio tape, get in touch using our contact form.