please empty your brain below

As part of the Upper Lea Valley Opportunity Area Framework and specifically the development potential associated with Crossrail 2 there was a plan to underground the pylons from Hackney Marsh to almost the London boundary.
The Open Infrastructure Map is interesting, the Hornsey and Mill Hill Substantions might be feeders for the railway.

Is the density of telecoms masts around the V&A Docks due to the overhead power lines?
I like this one (or possibly its neighbour) in Walthamstow, which straddles a footpath - so you can get right under it and look up.
I like that pylon too, Martin. The Lea Valley wouldn’t be the Lea Valley without pylons (so quite disturbed to hear they are planning to move the cables underground!)
There are electricity pylons running across part of Ashford, Surrey just outside Greater London Boundary
Pylons are often hiding in plain sight - because they don't block out the light you often don't notice them. I must admit to having been surprised to see the ones near Custom House when exporing the Elizabeth Line, especially as they are so close to City Airport. They are probably the closest to Central London.

Maps designed for aviators often show power lines prominently.
That Open Infrastructure map is fascinating. Hours of entertainment (just a pity they haven't marked major roads on it or many towns - but, that adds to the cross-referencing interest I suppose).

Any chance of making a list of all the 'maps' of this kind and putting it in your side bar? You've often mentioned such maps and my bookmarking system is useless, whereas I know yours won't be :)
Yes, really appreciate the link to the fascinating Open Infrastructure map: now I know a major tunnelling project (Wimbledon - New Cross) is under way just few metres from my house. Talk about low profile …
OpenRailwayMap is another great project (again based on OpenStreetMap).
I have a vague memory of seeing some around Mitcham Common - if so, I'm guessing they were to do with the Wimbledon spur. Even in the 1980s telegraph poles seemed rare on residential streets, compared with elsewhere. My road in Streatham had some, but with wires only supplying buildings on one side of the road. On the other side, the supply was presumably beneath the ground.
Just reading your first 3 lines intro, I would have said they are all congregated to the east and north-east of London. None elsewhere.
How wrong one can be.
Surprised there aren't more, although my experience is biased by having recently walked the rivers Lea and Roding!

The Open Infrastructure Map is fascinating.
Fascinating one. Never thought about that before as someone used to living in towns and doing a lot of rambling. Makes me wonder what it’s like in ultra dense areas like Tokyo
There are certainly lots of them along parts of the Lea Valley walk - so many it became a signature of that part of the walk.
I'd somehow never even noticed this... Makes the pylons I do see regularly feel like a treat
Just an interesting aside: I once heard that living in the path of pylons, especially directly beneath the power lines, can result in increased depression and anxiety for residents - and nothing to do with knowing it'll affect the sale of the house...
I lived on the edge of Rainham Marshes for twelve years and pylons dominated the view. In 1999(?) one of the pylons collapsed after a fire at its base.

It was either this pylon: or the pylon to the north-east of it. You can tell - the new pylon is a different type to the rest.

Most exciting
Those 400kV substations are a good indication that there was one a power station on the site (or very close, eg the edge of Iver for Uxbridge). All the domestic cabling would have radiated from them to local properties so it was the simplest place to connect everything up to the National Grid when it came in.
It was probably luck that the HS2 Chilterns tunnel portal site happens to sit below the M25-adjacent pylons - they broke into the cables to provide a new substation to run the TBMs.

Incidentally, if you drive the A412 Rickmansworth to Denham you'll see the bridge launching system framework sitting right over the road ready to crawl forward and place the sections across the lakes. Wow! But don't wait too long... Unfortunately I've nowhere to post clips from my forward and rear-facing dashcam.
As someone who grew up not too far from and therefore somewhat familiar with the line of pylons this post started with, it never really occurred to me that they might be as much of a rarity in London as they are.
And that’s how you set off alarm bells at GCHQ and extend an invitation for mi5 to come and have a nice chat about your internet search history.
One of the closest places the general public can get to the HV cables is the Regent's canal. The cables run under the public towpath for a considerable distance from the St. John's Wood Transfer Station.

St. John's Wood is one end of the specialised underground 400kV cable tunnel (to Elstree mostly under the A5). The cable tunnel is accessible by people when the current is off and has it's own little service cableway to transport maintenance personal speedily as needed.
Growing up in Croydon, and now living in a village just outside London criss-crossed with pylons, it never occurred to me how uncommon they are in the capital.

When I was a child there used to be a house next to a main road that had a massive pylon right next to it and cables going over their roof. I thought it was near Five Ways in Croydon, but can't seem to find it using the Open Infrastructure Map. Maybe the house has gone, or the overhead lines replaced with buried cables.
Ah, but you haven’t answered the answer the question: how many pylons are in there London?

dg writes: that wasn't the question.
Having grown up very close to two pylons, one at the junction of Peterborough and Revesby Roads on the St Helier estate, the second, yards from the River Wandle in Poulters Park, I had no idea at all that they are a bit of a rarity across the capital.

TridentScan | Privacy Policy