Giant transformer delivery set to cause delays on Northamptonshire roads

editorial image

An amazing 6,000 mile journey ends on Sunday when an electricity transformer, the size of a bungalow, is delivered to a National Grid substation near Grendon.

The 170 tonnes, nine metres long, and five metres wide transformer started its voyage in South Korea where it was built.

It will arrive by ship at Tilbury Docks in Essex before being lifted onto a low-loader for the final 100 mile leg by road. Having spent 70 days travelling by ship from Busan in South Korea to the UK, the load will travel by specialist heavy haulier for the last leg of its journey between Tilbury Docks and Grendon on Sunday, December 8.

The trailer, flanked by police outriders and supported by a specialist haulage transport team, will travel at about 10-20 miles an hour and is due to leave Tilbury Docks at 4am. It is due to arrive at the substation between 1pm and 3pm.

Having travelled along the A13, M25 and M1 into Northamptonshire, the final leg of the journey will be along Whiston Road and Station Road as the convoy makes its way into the National Grid substation off Station Road, just to the north west of Grendon.

National Grid and its partners in the move, Warwickshire-based Allelys Heavy Haulage Ltd, who are specialists in transporting heavy loads, have co-ordinated the huge task with military precision to keep traffic disruption and public inconvenience to a minimum.

Every effort has been made to deliver the transformer at a time and day when pedestrian and road traffic will be at its lightest and National Grid is alerting media, traffic watch and representatives in the Grendon area about the move so that people are aware of the unusual load.

National Grid project manager Jack Bayliss said: “We are sorry for any delays and disruption the convoy might cause but this is an essential delivery and we are working closely with the Police and everyone involved to keep disruption to a minimum. This £6 million transformer project is vital investment in our energy network and will play an important role in helping us maintain the future supply of electricity to a large local area.”

The heavy load will leave the M1 at J15 before travelling east to Grendon Substation via the B526 around Wootton before connecting across to the A428 via the back roads of the Brackmills Industrial Estate. From there, it will travel east along the A428 before turning north onto Billing Road at Brafield-on-the-Green and passing through Cogenhoe before arriving at Station Road and its destination. Once the load reaches the narrow roads towards the end of its journey, it will travel as a rolling road block (for safety reasons) which will mean that other vehicles will need to give way and may need to halt for a short time before resuming their journeys once the load has passed. No road diversions are involved.

If anyone has any queries or concerns about the transformer delivery they can ring our community relations line on 0800 990 3561. The line is open from 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday, and from 9am on Sunday until the delivery is complete.