Frequently asked questions

Who is National Grid?

National Grid owns and operates the electricity transmission network in England and Wales. It’s also responsible for the operation of the electricity transmission networks in Scotland.

What is the work that is taking place?

We’ll carry out a multi-million pound refurbishment of the existing overhead power line between the Mannington and Nursling substations. Our work to refurbish and upgrade the network will ensure we can continue to provide a safe and reliable supply of electricity to homes and businesses in the area in years to come.

Why is the work needed?

The existing overhead power line hasn’t been fully refurbished since it was installed in the 1960s. Our refurbishment and upgrade work will ensure that we can continue to provide a safe and reliable supply of electricity to homes and businesses in the area in years to come.

If the line has not been refurbished in over 50 years, is it still safe? Why are you only doing this now?

We inspect and maintain the pylons regularly to ensure they’re operating safely and efficiently. For example, we use helicopters with heat mapping technology to spot any issues or problems, as well as ground inspections.

The components on overhead lines are designed to last up to 60 years. However, we choose to refurbish before that time so that the work isn’t so costly and extensive.

Will my electricity supply be affected while work is going on?

None of our work will affect electricity supplies.

What is being done to keep people living directly under the wires safe?

National Grid takes the safety of the public seriously and wouldn’t do anything to endanger the public.

We’ll discuss any work that takes place directly over people’s properties with the landowner in advance of the relevant protection that we’ll put in place.

Will National Grid install any new pylons?

No. We’ll refurbish the overhead line from Mannington substation to Nursling. We won’t construct any new pylons.

Why is it necessary to clear birds’ nests and vegetation?

We need to clear some vegetation from around the base of some pylons and underneath overhead lines so that our contractors can have safe access to work sites. We’ll carefully remove any birds’ nests from affected trees and bushes. All bird nests will be removed outside of nesting season. National Grid is committed to minimising the impact of work on local wildlife and the environment. We’ll work under the watch of an ecologist when we remove the vegetation to ensure the clearance is kept to a minimum.

Will the vegetation be replaced?

How much vegetation will be replaced depends on the individual requirements at each pylon. However, we will undertake an extensive reinstatement programme following the vegetation clearance.

National Grid held public exhibitions during previous work in 2019. Why are you not doing the same again now?

The work being carried out now is very different to the proposed undergrounding of OHL lines in 2019 and is an entirely separate project. This current refurbishment is routine work that National Grid carries out regularly across its network so that it can continue to provide a safe and reliable supply of electricity to homes and businesses in the area.

What is the community relations telephone number for?

Our Community Relations team is available daily between 7am and 7pm on 0800 073 1047. The number is available to:

  • Ask any questions or request further information;
  • Report any feedback – positive or negative – or register concerns;
  • Enquire about our community funding schemes, like our Community Grant programme.
What is the Community Grant programme?

Due to the very nature of what we do – connecting people to the energy we all use – we’re at the heart of communities and each year we make a significant charitable investment in the UK. Our Community Grant Programme is aimed at community organisations and charities in areas where we impact local people through our essential works. We fund projects run by charities and community groups that meet local community needs by providing a range of social, economic and environmental benefits. If projects meet our criteria, grants of up to £10,000 can be applied for.

Applications are reviewed on a quarterly basis. You can find more details here.

What is the timetable of work that will be undertaken?

Our main refurbishment work will begin in May 2023 and last until October 2023. Ahead of this, and so that our contractors can access the pylons safely, we’ll clear some vegetation from around the pylons. Depending on where you live near the line, you may notice our contractors at work while at other times there is no work taking place. This doesn’t mean work has stopped, just that we’re working elsewhere along the line.

A full, proposed timetable is available below:

June – October 2022: Project preparation from technical professionals on the scheme

October 2022 – February 2023: First round of vegetation clearance work in line with the agreed ecological mitigation requirements and licenses

April – May 2023: Second round of vegetation clearance works in line with the agreed ecological mitigation requirements and licenses

May – October 2023: Overhead line refurbishment work

October - December 2023: Demobilisation, reinstatement and expected completion.

How will I know that works are taking place in my area?

We’ll put posters up at key locations along the route. These will provide information about the project, and our freephone Community Relations helpline number and project email address for any enquiries.

What traffic management will you be putting place during the project?

Road closures will be kept to a minimum. We’re in discussion with local authorities about limited lane and road closures. You may notice some temporary traffic management signage for site access and diversions, for example where we’ll install scaffolding and netting in specific locations in order to carry out the work on the overhead line. Posters will be in place at key locations along the route with information about the project and our helpline telephone number and email address for enquiries. We will post more details on the webpage about traffic management as the project progresses.

Will you be closing or diverting footpaths during this project and how do I find out more information?

We’re in discussion with local authorities along the line about limited closures and diversions, with more information being available closer to the start of the project. The footpaths will remain open until we’re working there. Posters will be in place at key locations along the route with information about the project and our helpline telephone number and email address for enquiries. You can also find out more information on the webpage.

How many vehicles will be using the local roads and accessing the pylons?

The amount of traffic going to and from the pylons will depend on when the work is due to be carried out. While there may be an increase in traffic during some stages of our work, we’ll control all movements to limit any disruption on local roads.