Snowdonia pylons coming down
National Grid has begun work on building a tunnel underneath Dwyryd Estuary to hold the electricity line, enabling the company to remove ten pylons from the nationally significant landscape.
Environmental and archaeological survey works are set to begin in the spring, with main construction starting in 2023.
Under the National Grid’s Visual Impact Provision project, the tunnel will have two head houses, one in Garth and the other in Cilfor. These sites will carry the required cable infrastructure underneath the estuary.
Hochtie has been appointed the main contractor for the scheme after tendering for the work in an international competition. In terms of construction, the project will require shaft sinking, tunnel construction, head house construction, commissioning, and cable installation.
The pylons are set to be removed in 2029. Currently, there are approximately three kilometres of overhead line stretched out across them, running from Minffordd to the estuary and then to Cilfor.
“This project has been a long time in planning,” said National Grid Snowdonia VIP’s senior project manager, Steve Ellison.
“Local people have been very enthusiastic to see the pylons come down and extremely patient in waiting for us to make a start.”
Chris Baines, who is the chair of the project’s independent stakeholder advisory group said he was “very excited” about the scheme starting.
“The effect will be transformational, and locals and visitors alike will be able to enjoy the unspoiled splendour of the Dwyryd Estuary for the first time in generations,” he went on.
“The team at National Grid has worked closely with local partners and the community in developing these plans and I know that they will continue to do so throughout the construction period.
“I have seen the work they have done in Dorset and the Peak District and it is exemplary. I am confident that they will bring the same high standards, care for the environment and innovative thinking to North Wales.”