NATIONAL Grid has bowed to public pressure and changed the location of its controversial pylon route.

The planned electricity line from Bridgwater to Avonmouth sparked protests from people in Southwick and Mark who opposed the siting of 140ft pylons across the countryside.

National Grid is now holding a new public consultation asking for feedback on the changes it has made, which includes a three-kilometre stretch of nine smaller T-pylons through Southwick.

Peter Bryant, National Grid project manager, said: “We have considered a suggestion which would change the location of pylons in the Southwick area, and having looked at the environmental and technical issues we feel this change could strike a better balance of all the factors that have to be considered.

“We have always listened carefully to the local community and are grateful to everyone for their feedback during last year’s public consultation. Once again, we would like to hear people’s views before finalising the proposal.”

Paul Hipwell, from No More Pylons, said: “I welcome that they are listening to people and thinking about changing the route, but they are not listening to the overriding view that people want the cables underground or underwater.”

“They have got to take into account peoples’ views. If it’s quite ok for Bristol or London to have their cables underground, then why is it not ok for Somerset?”

The public consultation will be at Mark Village Hall on Saturday, February 15 between 10am and 4pm.

Information on the new proposals will be available from various locations across Somerset between February 10 and March 10.

These include Bridgwater Library, Sedgemoor District Council in Bridgwater House, Burnham Library on Princess Street, Mark Village Hall, Highbridge Library, and Somerset County Council office in Taunton.

Over 600 homes and businesses in the area will receive an information leaflet including a map of the new proposals and information will also be available online at