A community interest project to rejuvenate an area of coastal land in South East Northumberland has been completed.
The project team responsible for the North Sea Link Interconnector project has carried out extensive works to improve access and facilities at Cambois beach.
Working in partnership with local landscape contractor, WL Straughan & Son, North Sea Link has resurfaced and extended the main car park, creating 100m2 more space for vehicles, constructed two new pathways to improve public access to the beach without compromising the protected sand dunes, and cleared an area of wasteland previously used by fly-tippers to create a new area of vegetation to encourage wildlife to the area.
The improvement works have come about as North Sea Link enters the next phase of its €2 billion Interconnector project to create an electricity link between the UK and Norway. The subsea pipeline will enable the transfer of excess wind and hydro power to ensure both countries have continuous access to affordable, renewable energy.
In order to start laying the high voltage subsea cables, North Sea Link engineers have had to close the main slipway and one of the smaller car parks used by the public to access the beach at Cambois.
Ryan Atkinson, cable engineer at North Sea Link, said:
“The closure of the main slipway at Cambois was unavoidable at this stage of the project, however, we have tried our best to turn this into a positive for the community with the creation of the extended car park and the new beach access routes.
“Upon completion of the cable-laying, our plan is to reinstate the slipway using new design standards and modern construction materials which will benefit the community for years to come.”
Councillor Glen Sanderson, cabinet member for environment and local services at Northumberland County Council, said:
“Since the North Sea Link project commenced work in 2016, the project team has done a lot to give back to the local community.
“The upgraded car park and beach access routes will make it easier for more people to enjoy the beautiful, unspoilt stretch of sand at Cambois while the new slipway will ensure safe boat launching for years to come.”
The North Sea Link Interconnector is a joint project between Statnett and National Grid who are working together to construct the electricity link between Norway and the UK. North Sea Link will connect the two countries from Kvilldal in Norway to Blyth, with onshore infrastructure located at Cambois.
Passing through Norwegian and British waters, North Sea Link will be operational in 2021 and will be the longest subsea interconnector in the world.