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Power boost for North Suffolk

A £3 million electricity project, that included dismantling and transporting a 61-tonne transformer 50 miles, and a jigsaw puzzle rebuild, has upgraded electricity supplies for 15,000 customers on the Suffolk/Norfolk border.

From Press releases - 1 February 2021 12:00 AM

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UK Power Networks engineers have spent two years working at the Ilketshall substation in north Suffolk to upgrade and future proof the electricity distribution network for customers in the Beccles and Bungay area.

The power firm which keeps the power flowing across the East, London and the South East upgraded and installed new electricity equipment that will help to ensure reliable power supplies for homes and businesses in the area for years to come.  

A 61-tonne transformer that was no longer needed in Swaffham due to an upgrade, was dismantled, along with its bespoke roof, and transported by road for 50 miles. Transformers are electrical kit which step down the voltage, so power can be safely delivered from substations to homes and businesses. A replica building was built around the transformer and the relocated roof was carefully rebuilt, around the turrets of the transformer which stick through the roof. Engineers said it was like a very large scale jigsaw puzzle, which had to be millimetre perfect in all directions.

UK Power Networks project manager Martin Field said: “This essential work has strengthened the power and resilience of our electricity network for customers in the Beccles and Bungay area. It will help to maintain reliable supplies for local homes and businesses. Recycling the transformer from Swaffham was a bonus.”

The company safely and reliably delivers electricity to 18 million people through cables, substations and power lines and invests around £600 million each year in the network.