Mary Glindon MP: High time to lift cables over Tyne

Even in the dying embers of this forlorn government, we have to hope and campaign for measures that benefit Tyneside.
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You may have heard me say this before but it really is high time for the government and National Grid to get a grip on the continuing problem of power cables over the River Tyne.

Ships cannot use the river to transport vital equipment for the offshore wind industry because the overhead cables restrict what tall ships can pass through the river.

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This electric fog on the Tyne is impeding local businesses and risks possible net benefits of up to £1.2 billion. Our great river needs action now to benefit the region as a whole.

Mary Glindon, North Tyneside MP.Mary Glindon, North Tyneside MP.
Mary Glindon, North Tyneside MP.

I have told successive Conservative Prime Ministers for the last four years that they need to move on this. The most recent time was in February when I told the Prime Minister that an authoritative and detailed study finds a strong economic case to remove the power cables over the Tyne.

I have asked if the current Prime Minister could finally secure a commitment from National Grid to implement its clear legal obligation and fund this vital work.

But successive Prime Ministers have flunked this simple but important task.

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Warm words are not enough. Again, I have to make it crystal clear that our regional economy is being needlessly hampered by inaction.

It’s not impossible for action to be taken quickly. It may well be, however, that we need a fresh government to do the right thing.

Mary Glindon is Labour MP for North Tyneside