For more detailed information please visit our Hinkley Point C Connection consultation web site.
National Grid has announced the draft route for the new 400,000 volt power connection between Bridgwater and Seabank near Avonmouth. This has followed nearly three years of planning and listening to the views of local people and experts. It puts a line on the map for the connection needed for the new Hinkley Point C power station and other low carbon electricity generation planned for the South West.
The new connection will mean that an existing 132,000 volt line between Bridgwater and Avonmouth can be taken down. In addition a number of other shorter sections of 132,000 volt line will be removed to enable construction of the new line. In total National Grid expects there to be a reduction in the number of pylons between Bridgwater and Avonmouth from 240 to 145.
We will consult on our detailed proposals in 2013 and anticipate that the T-pylon, winner of an international design competition, will be offered on the proposed Hinkley Point C Connection. It may be the first time it is used in the UK.
The new pylon could help to address some of the concerns raised by the public about the connection’s impact on the landscape.
During consultation some residents were concerned that the new 400,000 volt pylons needed to carry the wires would be much higher than those on the existing 132,000 volt line currently running along the route. However, at 36 metres high, the T-pylon is nearly one third shorter than the traditional 400,000 volt lattice design.
National Grid said previously that it hoped to offer the new pylon if it was ready in time to be used on the connection. Since the competition winner was chosen, engineers from both National Grid and the winning architects have worked hard to turn the concept into reality. They are now satisfied it will be ready.
Engineers from National Grid are now working with landscape experts to identify sections along the connection’s route where the new pylon would have the most benefit. It will then be included in the next round of public consultation in September when National Grid will be keen to hear people’s views.
Considering the T-pylon is just one of the ways National Grid is seeking to reduce the impact of the proposed Hinkley Point C Connection. For example, because of the project will allow an existing low voltage line to be removed and more than five miles of the proposed new line will go underground, overall there will be around 95 fewer pylons in the local landscape after the connection is built. We have produced a short film showing the T-pylon which can be seen here: