Removing pylons between Bridgwater and Sandford

Leaving part of the Mendip Hills pylon-free for the first time since the 1960s

From October 2021, we’ll be removing 37 kilometres of existing pylons owned by Western Power Distribution (WPD), leaving part of the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) pylon-free for the first time since the 1960s.

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 homes and businesses to new sources of low carbon energy.

We’re carrying out the work in stages between October 2021 and summer 2022. First, we’ll remove the wires that run between the pylons. Where the wires cross over roads, we will erect scaffolding and use controlled lifting systems to lower and recover the wires. After we’ve done that, we’ll remove the pylons, then the foundations, and finally reinstate the land.

Taking down pylons is a much smaller piece of work than erecting them, involving fewer vehicles over a much shorter length of time. Our contractor Balfour Beatty will use the most appropriate traffic routes and WPD’s access to reach and remove each of the pylons along the route. The vehicles used for this work will display signs so they can be easily identified as working to remove the pylons. Visit roadworks and traffic management for locations and timings of roadworks in each area.

The removal of the pylons follows feedback from members of the community during consultation carried out between 2009 and 2014. It’s part of the 67 kilometres of overhead line that we’ll have removed by the time the project is completed in 2025.

During 2023, we’ll remove the second line of WPD pylons that runs from the A368 in Sandford to Avonmouth.