Pylon of the Month - January 2024
Pylon of the Month - April 2024

Pylon of the Month - February 2024


Sometimes in February, I just want a reminder of sunnier times to come, but this month's pylon sees me hunkering down with a seasonally appropriate pylon sent in by a fan of the website. He is such a fan that a 2024 calendar he produced to celebrate Yorkshire pylons made the news! Anyway, back to February and Blackstone Edge on the Lancashire/Yorkshire border where this picture was taken.  The pylon in the foreground is a tension pylon, specifically a D90, so called because the transmission lines are Deviating by 90 degrees. There was lots of detail about the difference between tension and suspension pylons back in February 2017 and it is worth visiting to see one of the most spectacular photographs to feature on the blog. The email that accompanied this month's pylon pointed out a detail that would have escaped the notice of all but the most eagle-eyed:

....the line coming from the left (from Padiham substation) is dual bundles, but about half-way along one jumper on each arm, another jumper has been added, the 3 then going to 3 glass insulators on the other side of the tower, meaning triple bundles going off into the distance towards Halifax.

I don't understand what is going on with this dual to triple bundle change but as always, I'd be delighted to find out more!1 Sometimes my requests for further information do bear fruit. Back in September 2022, I wrote:

This type of pylon is (according to the French pylon Wikipedia page) a cat pylon (Le pylône Chat) and you can see why with the triangular features on top looking like ears. Whether that is a name recognised across international borders I have no idea - well travelled pylon experts please do get in touch and let me know.

A well travelled pylon expert did get in touch to point out that page 187 of a World Bank Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Study on the proposed 225 kV Bolgatanga-Ouagadougou Interconnection Project (Ghana side) contained a reference to a cat's head configuration tower.


Just one more thing I sign off. Any new pylon spotters who need help identifying the different pylon types should take a look at this excellent Spotters’ Guide to Pylons. It was published by the Pylon Appreciation Society, and although the website still exists, the society is sadly no longer active because the founder, Flash Bristow, died in 2020. See you in March!

  1. Pylon enthusiasts did get in touch via Twitter: "I think the change is due to wind loading. The twin bundles are offset from each other with no spacers either. They start here where the line turns north, and has full exposure of the east-west wind over the Pennines." You can read all about it on Twitter.





Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Daniel Beardsmore

PS I would be wary about sharing that spotter’s guide, as it contains various mistakes, including the misconception that all old towers are “PL1b”. The image resolution is terrible but it does appear that there is a genuine SEE PL1(b) S2 in there, but there were at least four complete ranges in the original National Grid: two from Milliken, one from GEC and one from Callender’s, PL1(b) normally referring to Callender’s. Flash’s site also omits a lot of types, including most Eve types (132 and 275 kV), most Scottish types (Keith, Grampian, T1648, T2175 etc), Watshams and more.

Daniel Beardsmore

D is double circuit, not deviation. Double circuit, 90° angle. It’s an L6, specifically the BICC design (the other original L6 types being J L Eve, Blaw Knox and Balfour Beatty). The line tower (just “D”) in the distance also appears to be the BICC design, although L6(c) is the same and L6(m) is very similar. (The D90 is BICC not L6(c) as L6(c) uses Eve’s D90, and off-hand I don’t know what the L6(m) D90 looks like. L6(c) and L6(m) are the two metric types.)

S for single circuit. DD for double circuit double earthwire, SS for the very rare single circuit double earthwire.

Pylon of the Month

My pleasure - keep coming back for more!


Just discovered your website, what a joy. I've always liked pylons.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)