Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP)

Vattenfall - Norfolk Vanguard offshore Windfarm

Vattenfall is proposing to build a 1.8 gigawatt offshore wind farm called Norfolk Vanguard, nearly 50km from Norfolk's coast. The power cable makes landfall at Happisburgh and passes through North Norfolk and into Breckland district, connecting to the National Grid at Necton. Once constructed and connected to the National Grid the wind farm will potentially provide 5% of the UK's electricity needs.

On this page we will explain the background to the project, who is responsible for ensuring planning legislation is followed correctly and web links to key project developments.

Background to the project

Norfolk Vanguard is a large scale offshore wind farm proposal and is defined under the Planning Act 2008 as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP).

This means that Breckland Council will not be the planning authority making the final decision on the proposal but would have a role as a statutory consultee because the development would affect parts of Breckland District. Vattenfall (opens new window) has applied to the Planning Inspectorate for a Development Consent Order (DCO). This will be examined by the Planning Inspectorate and a recommendation made to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for a decision. The application was formally accepted by the Planning Inspectorate for examination on 24th July 2018.

Vattenfall are also proposing a related offshore wind farm scheme calledNorfolk Boreas (opens new window). The Boreas project will also be an NSIP proposal and this project is currently running approximately 12 months behind Vanguard.

The role of the Planning Inspectorate

The Planning Inspectorate plays a key role in ensuring the project follows correct planning legislation and takes on board key stakeholder views.The Planning Inspectorate Website National Infrastructure Planning (opens new window) features a section designed to inform and update progress around Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs) within England and Wales, which includes the Vanguard project.

An overview and documents related to Norfolk Vanguard can be viewed on the Planning Inspectorate website, (opens new window) which also includes information on how to keep up to date with the project and the timetable for the next stages in the NSIP process.

Breckland businesses and contractors  

Vattenfall is committed to ensuring their approach to project procurement and investment supports the local supply chain and develops local skills within Norfolk. As part of this commitment they will require contractors involved with the Norfolk Vanguard and Boreas projects to work to maximise, where they can, the use of local business. If interested please visit and register your interest: on the Vattenfallwebsite (opens new window)

Find out more

Visit the website (opens new window) for latest news and information in relation to the Norfolk Vanguard project.

Last updated: 23/11/2023 10:05:05