Jersey Electricity signs contract for third £40m French power cable link

N1 contract signatories

At today's signing (from left): Prysmian's Project Manager James Garner and Business Development Director David Worthington,  JE CEO Chris Ambler, VBMS MD Arno Van Poppel,  GEL CEO Alan Bates and  VBMS Commercial Director Jack Wattel

Jersey Electricity today signed contracts worth £20m with an international consortium for the manufacture and installation of another 100MW undersea supply cable to France known as Normandie 1 (N1). The move comes less than a year after the successful completion of our £70m Normandie 3 cable project.

N1 is a direct replacement for EDF1, Jersey’s first 55MW interconnector installed in 1984, which came to the end of its life in 2012 after 28 years of service. Like N3, this latest project is another Channel Islands Electricity Grid (CIEG) joint venture with Guernsey Electricity. The two Channel Islands utilities will share the total £40m project cost and the import capacity of the new cable which is expected in service in 2017.


Archirondel where Normandie 1 will connect to existing 90kV infrastructure

World leading cable industry specialists Prysmian, who manufactured and installed N3 and its adjoining land cables, will manufacture the new cable at their flagship plant in Naples, while Dutch specialists VBMS, with whom the CIEG developed an innovative Power Cable Maintenance Agreement  in 2012, will be responsible for its installation.

N1 will follow the same 27km route as EDF1 from Archirondel to St Remy des Landes. Work surveying the route began on Monday with the deployment of MMT’s 21-metre Askholmen near-shore survey vessel. Unlike the N3 subsea cable, which took 11 weeks to install over a more southerly route, the installation of N1 is likely to take around three weeks as it will be laid on the seabed, like its predecessor, rather than ploughed in beneath it. No road works will be necessary in Jersey or in France this time as the new cable will connect to existing 90kV infrastructure on both sides of the Channel.

N1 survey vessel Askholholmen

 The Askholmen started surveying the route of Normandie 1 on 13 July

EDF1 has been prepared in readiness for removal from the seabed in accordance with planning permissions before N1 is laid and the small substation at St Remy des Landes, known as ‘Poste de Surville’, which served the 1984 cable, will be dismantled and the land returned to nature once the new circuit has been commissioned.

N1 contract group

Prysmian Business Development Director, David Worthington and Project Manager James Garner, along with Commercial Director Jack Wattel and Managing Director Arno Van Poppel of VBMS, attended the contract signing ceremony at the Powerhouse with Jersey Electricity CEO Chris Ambler, Finance Director Martin Magee, Energy Division Director David Padfield, GEL Chairman Ian Beattie, CEO Alan Bates, Finance Director Julian Turner, Asset Management Director Sally-Ann David and the JE N1 project team headed by Project Executive and Chief Engineer John Duquemin and Project Manager Jeremy Willis. 

Jerry and Don Thompson

N1 Project Manager Jeremy Willis (right) in early discussions about the route with Jersey Fishermen's Association Chairman Don Thompson

Afterwards  Chris Ambler said: ‘Despite installing N3 only last year, we always intended to replace EDF1 and working with Guernsey Electricity has enabled us to accelerate this. N1 will further enhance supply security and will enable us to import Jersey’s full electricity requirement even during the winter peaks, as well as help balance the grid in a more efficient way. Despite energy efficiency, we forecast demand for electricity to rise in the future as new applications take hold.  We are committed to investing in a sustainable future for Jersey to ensure we continue to meet that demand with affordable, secure and low carbon imported power.’