National Grid has successfully energised 36 of the world’s first pylons in the new T-design between Bridgwater and Loxton in Somerset, SW England. The new pylons have been constructed as part of the £900 million Hinkley Connection Project, a 57 km 400 kV line to connect the new nuclear power plant to the grid.
Electricity is now passing via the T-pylons to a newly constructed electricity substation at Sandford and along 8.5km of underground cables through the Mendip Hills area. A further 80 T-pylons will be completed and energised by 2024.
The T-pylon design, the first major UK redesign since 1927, has a single pole and cross shaped arms, and is around a third shorter than traditional high-voltage pylon design with a smaller ground footprint. The new design was selected from over 250 designs entered into an international competition run in 2011, organised by the Royal Institute of British Architects, and the UK government. The competition sought a new design to reduce impact on the local environment and surroundings.