SSEN splashes £4.5m to protect island community’s power from floods

The money will be used to elevate the village of Osney Island’s substation above the high-water level

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) is investing £4.5 million to protect the village of Osney Island in Oxford from having floods damage its power supply.

The money will be used to elevate the area’s substation above the high-water level – the vital piece of infrastructure currently supplies power to more than 10,000 customers in the local area.

The move comes amid concerns regarding potential flooding from the River Thames and the smaller streams which surround the island.

The new equipment will be installed later this year 2019 and brought into service during 2020.

Piling work for the foundations of the new substation building has already been completed.

SSEN’s Project Manager for the upgrade, David Zirpins, said: “Osney Island’s unique location presents the potential of flooding from the nearby waterways, which could result in water levels rising to a point where our existing substation and site would be compromised resulting in the need to switch out equipment interrupting customer supplies.

“This is a considerable investment, as we have taken the decision to rebuild the substation in a specially constructed building; raised high enough that it will remain above the predicted flood level, ensuring that the area’s electricity supplies are safe and secure.”

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