Mendip Hills

Overview – Autumn 2022

The new 400,000 volt underground cable installed under the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty have been connected to the new line of T-pylons that will help carry homegrown, low carbon energy to six million homes and businesses.

We’re pleased to be putting 8.5 kilometres of the Hinkley Connection route underground through this very special landscape of the Mendip Hills in response to community feedback received during consultation. By doing so, we are leaving this part of the Area of Outstanding Beauty free of pylons for the first time since the 1930s.

To make way for the new connection, National Grid is removing a total of 249 existing 132,000 volt lattice pylons and 67 kilometres of existing overhead lines from the Somerset landscape.

91 pylons have been taken down between Bridgwater and Sandford, including 28 pylons removed from a section of the Mendip Hills. The remaining eight pylons closest to Sandford substation are programmed to be removed during 2023.

Reinstatement of the land along the cable route is already underway and will be completed in 2024.

Thank you from everyone working on the project for your patience and understanding as we progress this vital work to connect six million homes and businesses to new sources of homegrown, low carbon energy.

Contact our community relations team to register for project updates direct to your inbox.

Take a look at our detailed map

Mendip Hills timeline

Early 2019 to early 2024


Build Mendip Hills 400,000 volt underground cable

Work started in this area in April 2019.

What we're doing:

  • Advance landscaping and planting around the location of the new cable sealing end (CSE) compound.

  • Building temporary entrances and access roads to allow construction traffic to enter site from the local highway. You can find more information on our construction information page.

  • Installing a temporary site office and temporary construction compound north of Tarnock, and up to four secondary temporary construction compounds along the route to minimise traffic movements on site. One of these secondary compounds will be located immediately south of the new CSE compound.

  • Constructing a new CSE compound east of the M5 motorway to the south of the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and the River Axe.

  • Laying 8.5 km of 400,000 volt underground cables from the CSE compound south of the Mendip Hills AONB northwards to the new Sandford substation.

Mid 2021 to mid 2022


Remove existing 132,000 volt overhead line

What we're doing:

  • Removing Western Power Distribution’s overhead line from Bridgwater Substation to the A368 in Sandford. This will make way for, and minimise the visual impact of the new overhead line.