2 June 1931

Grid biosecurity row

NORTH Yorkshire farmers have accused National Grid staff building a controversial new power line in the Vale of York of ignoring requests to observe biosecurity precautions in the wake of foot-and-mouth disease.

Dairy farmer Richard Gill, of Station Farm, Alne, near Easingwold, said this week that teams working for the power transmission company were ignoring requests to ensure protection against a recurrence of the disease. He has lodged a complaint with National Grids solicitors over the failure of company staff to disinfect their boots when entering the farm.

National Grid has now started construction work on the £200m 400,000V power line linking Lackenby on Teesside to the national electricity distribution network at Shipton-by-Beningbrough on the outskirts of York. The line will be mounted on 227 pylons, each as high as Nelsons Column in London.

"We have asked them to maintain biosecurity measures and the National Grid has sent us a fax to say they would do so, but the staff that come here do not even disinfect their boots in the buckets in the farmyard," said Mr Gill.

National Grid spokesman Stewart Grant insisted that no specific biosecurity regulations were in force at Station Farm. "But we are happy to agree precautions with landowners when carrying out work on their land," he said. &#42