Public feedback sought for planned interconnector between Ireland and Wales

A series of public consultation events is being held this month to discuss the proposed MaresConnect electricity interconnector between Ireland and Wales.

MaresConnect will comprise a cable route of approximately 245 kilometers under the sea and underground between Dublin in Ireland and Bodelwyddan, Denbighshire in Wales. 

The 750 MW electricity link is being developed by MaresConnect Limited, owned by Foresight Group’s energy transition fund, Foresight Energy Infrastructure Partners (FEIP), and Etchea Energy Nominees Limited (EENL).

The project is currently in its early stages of development and is proposed to include a converter station near the existing Bodelwyddan substation in Denbighshire, as well as underground cabling installed within the local road network and agricultural land from the coast.

According to the developer, recognizing the importance of local input, the company is committed to engaging with the community throughout the development process and comprehensive technical and environmental surveys will be conducted to address local challenges and opportunities, to ensure that the final design aligns with the characteristics of the surrounding environment.

Members of the project team will be present at the following events to introduce the project, share plans, and gather feedback from the community: February 19 at Llanddulas Village Hall, February 20 at Colwyn Bay Library Foyer, February 21 at Neuadd Owen Hall, Cefn, February 22 at St Asaph Parish Church / Community Hub and February 26 at Bodelwyddan Community Centre. All the events will take place from 14:00 to 18:30.

“We are pleased to announce a series of public consultation events designed to introduce and discuss the project with local communities and stakeholders,” said Tom Brinicombe, Planning and Permitting Manager for MaresConnect.

“MaresConnect is intended to create a link between the Irish and British electricity transmission networks, enabling electricity to flow in both directions between Ireland and Wales. It will play an important role in: increasing energy security; facilitating the integration of renewable energy within the transmission network; and supporting downward pressure on wholesale electricity prices..”

MaresConnect is an integral part of the MARES project, which aims to integrate 1,750 MW of new renewable energy sources and 6 GWh of pumped hydro energy storage (PHES) in Mayo in the west of Ireland to the GB and SEM networks, as well as provide increased interconnector capacity and voltage stability.

The project secured an interconnector license from Ofgem in June 2022 and a 750 MW grid connection agreement at the National Grid’s Bodelwyddan substation.