We’re carrying out the work in stages. We’ve removed 88 percent of the wires that run between the pylons and dismantled 15 pylons. Where the wires cross over roads, we erect scaffolding and use controlled lifting systems to lower and recover the wires. We then dismantle the pylons, remove the foundations, and finally reinstate the land.
Taking down pylons is much simpler than erecting them, involving fewer vehicles over a much shorter length of time. Our contractor Balfour Beatty is using the most appropriate traffic routes and WPD’s existing access to reach and remove each of the pylons. The vehicles used for this work display signs (see image) so they can be easily identified as working to remove the pylons. See our roadworks and traffic management information for locations and timings of roadworks in each area.
We expect to complete removing this line of pylons by summer 2022 – leaving part of the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) pylon-free for the first time since the 1960s.
During 2023, we’ll remove the second line of WPD pylons that runs from the A368 in Sandford to Avonmouth, bringing us a step closer to removing 67 kilometres of WPD’s overhead line by the time the Hinkley Connection Project is completed in 2025.
Removing the 132,000 volt line operated by WPD will make room for and reduce the visual impact of the new 400,000 volt connection, which when complete will connect six million UK homes and businesses to new sources of low-carbon energy.