A BID to force landowners to sell part of their sites to operators of what will be one of the world’s largest offshore wind farms is facing protests from the owners of East Lothian’s nuclear power station.

SSE Renewables is behind the Berwick Bank Wind Farm project, which will bring energy onshore at Skateraw and then require a connection into the National Grid at Branxton, near Torness.

But its application to Scottish Ministers for a compulsory purchase order to be approved has brought objections from Torness Power Station operators EDF, as well as Network Rail and private landowners.

The objectors raised concerns about the speed at which the order was submitted, a lack of time given to them to respond, the "excessive" land requirements included, and the loss of prime agricultural land.

Network Rail said it objected because the proposed route for cables involved railway land but added that negotiations with the applicant were ongoing to try and come to an agreement.

East Lothian Courier: Map shows route Berwick Bank Wind Farm cables will use to feed offshore power into the National Grid. pic DPEA Appeal website PERMISSION FOR USE FREE FOR ALL LDR PARTNERS

This map shows the route Berwick Bank Wind Farm cables will use to feed offshore power into the National Grid. Image: DPEA appeal website

However, EDF said that the order was "premature", arguing that the wind farm had not received consent yet and the need for compulsory purchase was not yet established.

The Torness operator added that the impact on the power station had not been adequately addressed, saying: “The project will have an operational impact and an impact on the defuelling of the Torness nuclear power station."

SSE Renewables has asked Scottish Ministers to approve the compulsory purchase order to allow it to acquire the rights and land to “construct, operate and remove electricity transmission lines, plant and ancillary infrastructure between Mean Low Water Springs at Skateraw and the grid connection point at Branxton”.

In a statement, the firm said that the order would affect four private landowners who would be required to sell land, with a further 10 ordered to give the company permanent rights to use the land, and seven private landowners who will have temporary rights created over their land.

In total, 15 objections have been lodged to the order on behalf of landowners, EDF, Network Rail and other local businesses which will be impacted.

ScottishPower has also lodged objections amid concern that the project could impact on its £1.3 billion Eastern Link work.

Scottish Ministers will hold a public inquiry unless the company is able to come to an agreement with concerned parties which could lead them to withdraw their objections.