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National Grid completes £50m refurbishment of power lines in Devon

Published 30 January 2018

National Grid has completed a £50 million overhead power line refurbishment in Devon to keep energy flowing to homes and businesses in Devon for another 50 years.

National Grid, working with Babcock International Group, started working in March 2017 on a stretch line nearly 100km long, between Landulph and Exeter. Over 300 pylons were included in the refurbishment.

The refurbishment involved replacing the power lines, which keep the supply of energy flowing, as well as cosmetic changes like repainting and steelwork replacement.

An innovative alternative to scaffolding called Skysafe was used near Trago Mills to avoid getting in the way of people shopping.

Skysafe is a safe way to install new overhead wires using trolleys linked with electrically insulated ropes suspended high above the ground. With Skysafe there’s no need for road closures.

Project Engineer Robbie Griggs, said: “We’d like to thank our neighbours for their patience during our work. Refurbishing the power lines is vital in ensuring that electricity keeps flowing to where it’s needed. National Grid is investing in refurbishing these overhead lines across the country.

“We worked hand in hand with Devon County Council to mitigate any problems, especially at Trago Mills where we avoided excessive disruption using Skysafe.

“We’ve worked hard to engage with the community and make a positive impact over the last year. Through our Community Grant Programme and our school sessions we’ve made a very real difference in the community. Together with Mad Science we ran two education sessions at Broadclyst Community Primary School and Stoke Cannon C of E Primary School. We helped the children to gain a good understanding of energy, hopefully kindling a life-long love of science.”

"National Grid works hard to minimise any disruption in the communities where their engineers are working. This includes proactively engaging with the local community to raise awareness of the works, and answering residents’ queries and concerns seven days a week, even Christmas Day."

National Grid also donated £50,000 to various community groups in the area, including Weir Quay Community Watersports Hub Club, Lee Moor Hall north of Plymouth and Chudleigh Knighton Village Hall. The Community Grant Programme is National Grid’s fund for community organisations and charities in areas where work is impacting on local people. Since National Grid started providing grants in December 2015 they’ve invested £671,034 in local projects nationwide.

Source: Company Press Release