Energy news:

SPS writes to the newly appointed Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

We have written to the Rt Hon Grant Shapps calling for greater co—ordination of energy projects impacting Suffolk including an offshore grid network to safeguard Suffolk’s landscapes and communities.

Suffolk will host a number of future nationally important energy infrastructure projects and whilst we recognise the importance of such projects, not least in addressing climate change, meeting the nation’s energy requirements, job creation during construction and operational phases; the cumulative impacts across Suffolk of a new nuclear power station, multiple large off-shore wind farms, interconnectors, a new transmission line known as East Anglia Green, on-shore substations and underground cabling, will be both prolonged and substantial. Read our letter here.

Judicial Review into offshore windfarm decision to proceed

The High Court has accepted SASES case for Judicial Review in respect of all six grounds on which SASES challenged Kwasi Kwarteng’s (former BEIS Secretary of State) decision in the summer to grant consent for EA1N and EA2 wind farms and a National Grid connection hub/substation at Friston. 

The grounds relate to: Flood Risk, Heritage, Noise, Generating Capacity, Cumulative Impact and Consideration of Alternative Sites.  The case will be heard in mid-November and judgment should be issued a number of weeks after that.

Heritage news:

Lavenham – McCarthy and Stone application on Lavenham Press site refused. 

SPS is delighted that this application has been turned down primarily on heritage grounds and loss of employment land.  SPS had raised serious concerns regarding the scale and design of the proposed development and its impact on the character of the surrounding conservation area and nearby listed buildings in what is a very sensitive prominent site.  We had also consistently attempted to highlight the heritage and aesthetic value of an existing unlisted 19th century horsehair factory building on the site, challenging both the applicant and Babergh heritage officer’s conclusions that the building could be demolished.  We believe it is an important, prominent remnant of the industrial heritage of Lavenham and is functionally linked to a factory building on Water Street, dating from the 15th century. We were therefore pleased that the Officer’s report recommending refusal included the loss of this building.

The two storey C19th horse hair factory at the Lavenham Press site

SPS has been consulted on a number of planning applications this month which have the potential to impact Suffolk’s heritage. Responses have been submitted on the following:

Community energy visioning:

SPS, working in partnership with Debenham Parish Council hosted three community workshops as part of the CPRE funded Renewables Done Well programme. The project is a pilot scheme which seeks to develop a methodology for working with parishes to help them analyse their local landscape, analyse the energy needs of the community and finally bring this together to produce a plan of how renewables can be integrated in a strategic and co-ordinated way in their parish.

SPS will collate the outcomes of the three workshops and producing a Vision document before the end of the year.


East Anglian Daily Times monthly opinion piece:

‘Government’s flawed attitude to growth’ – 19 October 2022.

SPS Director, Fiona Cairns on why Liz Truss was wrong to marginalise local communities and groups as ‘anti-growth’.

Suffolk View: the Autumn edition of Suffolk View magazine is at the printers and is due to be sent out to all Members in the first week in November and will soon be available on the website.