Project summary

Xlinks’ Renewable Energy Development in Devon is a vital part of the plan to deliver a reliable source of low-cost renewable power from Morocco to the GB electricity grid, free from the environmental and weather constraints holding back UK-based generation.

The proposed onshore works in Devon comprise:

  • Approximately 14km of underground High Voltage Direct Current cabling, from landfall at Cornborough Range.
  • Construction of a HVDC to HVAC Converter Station site in close proximity (to the west) of the existing National Grid substation located between Gammaton and Alverdiscott.

Project update - April 2023

Following feedback from the local community at our first public consultation, we extended our project timeline and worked to enhance our proposals.

We look forward to discussing the proposed key enhancements to the project at our second round of public exhibitions later this month.

Firstly, we propose to relocate the converter station site, which houses two converter stations to convert direct current electricity to alternating current electricity, to the old Webbery Showground. This site is closer to the existing National Grid substation and less disruptive to local residents, particularly during construction. We are also working to ensure that the site is less visually intrusive and substantially screened from view.

Secondly, we propose an alternative route for the underground cable to avoid Abbotsham village. This takes the underground cable away from homes and schools.

Finally, we have further detail to share regarding the proposed construction methods and transport routes employed by the project. We have taken every opportunity to minimise disruption during construction, including on local roads.

Once we have carefully considered all feedback gathered at the second round of consultation, it is our intention to submit a planning application for the project in the summer.

Indicative project timeline

Our commitment

We’re committed to engaging fully and thoroughly with the Devon community.

  1. We are engaging with local stakeholders to ensure we have the fullest understanding of how to minimise disruption during construction.
  2. We will explore all opportunities to contribute to social and economic development in Devon.
  3. It is our priority to be a good neighbour to Devon’s communities and natural environment.

We’re listening

Our first public consultation ran from 23rd November 2022 to 13th December 2022.

Our second public consultation runs from Monday 17th April to Wednesday 31st May 2023. Drop-in public exhibitions will be held on:

  • Wednesday 26th April 2023 from 12.30pm to 8.00pm. Huntshaw Parish Hall, Huntshaw, Devon, EX38 7HH
  • Thursday 27th April 2023 from 12.30pm to 8.00pm. Alverdiscott Community Hall, Stoney Cross, Bideford, Devon, EX39 4PZ
  • Tuesday 16th May 2023 from 2.00pm to 7.00pm. Pollyfield Community Centre, Avon Road, Bideford, EX39 4BL
  • Wednesday 17th May 2023 from 12.30pm to 8.00pm. Caddsdown Business Support Centre, Caddsdown Industrial Park, Clovelly Road, Bideford, Devon, EX39 3DX

Through the course of this consultation, we’re especially keen to hear your views including:

  1. Comments, questions or concerns relating to our proposals.
  2. Ways in which components, materials, work packages and services can be tendered and sourced locally.
  3. Options we should consider to achieve a net positive impact on biodiversity.
  4. Ways in which a community benefit fund might be structured, and examples of local projects that could take advantage of such a scheme.

Once public consultation closes, we will analyse the feedback received and prepare a statement of community involvement report which will accompany the planning application due to be submitted to Torridge District Council in summer 2023. The report will detail the consultation undertaken, feedback received and how this has shaped our application.

Get in touch

Please send us your thoughts via any of the channels listed below:

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Frequently Asked Question

Our project needs to connect at the optimal location in terms of transmission capacity and efficiency. This means it can deliver more renewable energy at a lower cost to Britain’s households.

We worked with National Grid to identify the optimal connection site. Agreement has been reached with National Grid for two 1.8GW connections at this site.

We are committed to explore all opportunities to contribute to social and economic development in Devon, including through the tender of work packages during the construction of the project and through the establishment of a community benefit fund.

It is our priority to be a good neighbour to Devon’s communities and natural environment. We aim to deliver a net positive environmental impact for biodiversity.

Finally, our project represents nationally-significant action in line with the principles of the Devon Climate Declaration.

All cables will be installed underground, with land reinstated to its previous use. There will be no permanent infrastructure above-ground along the route.

At the converter station site, the design process will use substantial screening to minimise visual impact.

Post-construction noise will be minimal, with very few moving parts, occasional inspections and maintenance, and a small operational team.

We will seek to minimise disruption to local roads during construction by:

  • Transporting large, infrequent, converter station components by water to Appledore shipyard.
  • Employing construction haul roads along the underground cable route to remove frequent vehicle movements from the public highway.
  • Transporting materials to strategically located compounds adjacent to the A39, A386 and Gammaton Road.

Further information