A new £13m undersea cable linking the Isle of Wight to the mainland has been completed ahead of schedule by Southern Electric Power Distribution, making the electricity supply on the Island more robust and resilient than ever.
The high voltage subsea link between Thorness Bay and Lepe was originally planned to be powered up this coming autumn, but such was the good progress, it was actually energised at the start of September.
This project, to replace one of the existing cables with a new cable using the latest technology, was carried out in two stages, starting in October last year. The first six-week phase, to install the cable ducting was completed last October. The second phase, to install the specially designed cable itself, started in June and the energising process, which saw electricity starting to flow through the cable, was successfully completed last Friday (12th September).
Power Distribution Project Manager, Chris Smith, has said:
“Keeping the lights on safely is our number one priority and this new replacement cable, which is buried below the seabed and away from danger, means it is much more robust and reliable.
“This new replacement cable connecting the island to the mainland, along with the two other existing cables, also means that whenever we have to carry out maintenance on one of the circuits, we will always have two other resilient cables to rely on as the essential back up.
“I’d like to thank the local communities for their patience and understanding as we carried out the essential work. We’d originally anticipated having the work all completed in the autumn, and so to have everything in place and the new cable live ahead of schedule is great news for everyone involved.”