PLANS to run overhead National Grid cables through Shropshire are to be fought by council bosses.

Shropshire Council will tell the energy firm that cables connecting new wind farms in Mid Wales to the existing network should be carried underground instead.

National Grid is proposing to construct a new substation to collect the energy from the farms and a new 400,000 volt transmission connection.

A public consultation has been launched into how this will be done.

Cllr Mal Price, cabinet member for planning at Shropshire Council, said:

“Shropshire Council recognises National Grid is required to connect new wind farms to the network.

“However, Shropshire is a rural county where the attractive landscape character makes a significant contribution to the visitor economy.

“The impact of a 400KV overhead line connection is considered to be significantly detrimental to this.

“We know local people do not want to see pylons and overhead cables crossing the county, and nor does the council.”

Following the public consultation, Shropshire and Powys Councils will be able to provide reports to the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC) for consideration before the submission of any application.

Further phases of consultation are planned throughout 2011 and early 2012 and National Grid is expecting to submit the formal planning application during next year.

The decision on the route of the connection will be taken by the national IPC, not by Shropshire Council.