Preparatory work on North-South interconnector can go ahead despite landowner opposition
A JUDGE has granted EirGrid’s application to vary a stay which had prevented it doing preparatory work on the proposed North-South electricity interconnector.
A number of landowners and others challenging the interconnector opposed the variations.
They argued EirGrid should await the court’s decision on their full case challenging planning permission for the project. That is due to be heard in July.
In his ruling on Wednesday, Mr Justice Brian McGovern said the interests of justice and balance of convenience entitled Eirgrid to the variations.
The planned variations, including carrying out road and archaeological surveys, do not involve construction works on the interconnector and do not involve EirGrid entering onto the applicants’ lands, he said.
The interconnector is an important piece of infrastructure and EirGrid has to take complex and time consuming steps to comply with the planning conditions, he said.
He would vary the stay as sought because EirGrid would suffer much greater prejudice than the applicants if the variation was not permitted, he held.
The case by the North East Pylon Pressure Campaign Ltd, representing about 190 affected landowners, and Maura Sheehy, a farmer, of Teltown Road, Donaghpatrick, Co Meath, is the first of three challenges over the interconnector due to be heard at the Commercial Court in July.