Work starts on new T-shaped electricity pylons in Somerset

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James Goode
Image caption,
James Goode, the manager of the project, in front of one of the new pylons

More than 100 new T-shaped pylons are being installed to carry electricity from Hinkley Point C to Avonmouth.

National Grid says the new connection will power up to six million homes and businesses.

The plans were approved in 2016 after a lengthy legal dispute, as some residents raised concerns over potential damage to the countryside.

The T-shaped pylons are the first new design for pylons in the UK in nearly 100 years.

The 35 mile (57km) route between Bridgwater and Portbury will run overhead, except for a stretch across the Mendip Hills where the connection will go underground.

Each pylon takes about five days to build. Construction of the first 48 began in September near East Huntspill and the remaining 68 pylons, north of Sandford, will begin in 2022.

With a single pole and cross-shaped arms, the pylons stand at 35 metres (114ft) high, around a third shorter than the traditional high-voltage lattice shape.

Image caption,
Each T pylon takes about five days to build

Chris Bennett, from National Grid Electricity Transmission, said: "We are always looking for innovative new ways to mitigate the impact of our infrastructure on the natural environment and projects such as T pylons are a great example."

The traditional lattice design has been in use in the UK since 1927 and there are around 22,000 pylons stretching over more than 7,700 kilometres in England and Wales.

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