News

BCM Construction helping electrify key part of the Midland Main Line

28th February 2022

Somewhere along the Midland Main Line rail track in the middle of rural Leicestershire, BCM Construction is hard at work for our major client, SPL Powerlines UK, on an extensive infrastructure programme to increase capacity, improve journey times, and enhance the passenger experience on the railways across the Midlands.

Specific work is currently underway on the delivery of a substation parallel to the track which will result in the following:

  • 25kV OLE (Overhead Line Equipment) from Kettering to Market Harborough inclusive with a
  • 400kV National Grid connection at Braybrooke substation supply point, as well as modifications to the existing power supply / OLE.
  • South of Bedford to support the running of six Long Distance High-Speed Intercity (LDHSI) bi-mode trains using electric traction.

Work commenced on farmland in October 2022, with the winter period seeing the removal of all trackside scrub, a ‘reduce dig’ to level the cleared land and the formation of a 400mm thick concrete pad measuring 29.9 x 4.1 metres which will host the 400kV substation. The substation will connect with the transformer site which is currently being built for the National Grid in the same location.

BCM Project Manager, Dan Hodder commented: “We are very pleased with the progress made through the winter period despite challenging conditions on the ground including snow, rain, and frost. All the team have persevered to keep the project moving forward and on schedule.

The most significant aspect of the work so far has been the reduced ground excavations which amounted to almost 5000 tons of spoil being excavated and relocated!

We look forward to finishing all the remaining civil aspects by late June. The team have really committed to this work and I’m very glad of their efforts as we work with our client SPL

BCM has also installed nearby; a DNO unit, a GRP yellow handrail, and a GRP post route as crucial adjuncts to the substation. Construction continues apace with further development involving:

  • Construct Traction Power Building Reinforced Concrete (RC) Foundation
  • Construct External Stairs & Ramp, inclusive of Handrail
  • Supply & Install Hardstanding
  • Supply & Install Type 1 Walkway around hard standing
  • Construct Crane Turning Area hard standing
  • Install 6No. 4-way XL Multiduct Buried Route from SGT1 & SGT2
  • Install Cubis Ultima Chambers
  • Install 4No. 150mm Dia. Multicore Cable Ducts
  • Install Cubis Stakka Boxes
  • Install 4No. URX’s (approx. 12mtrs each)
  • Install 3.0m High Hot-dip Galvanised Palisade Fencing.
  • Install 1.8m Wide 3.0m High Palisade Access Gate.
  • Install Cubis Stakka chambers.
  • Install 20no. 160mm Dia. Rigid Coil Power Ducts buried route from HV Chambers to Traction Power Building.
  • Installation of C1/9 Traction Bonding Route.
  • Installation of Traction Bonding.
  • 4nr 19/4 22mm RSC
  • Supply & Install 1.8m High Hot-dip Galvanised Palisade Fencing and Access Gate
  • Installation of a full 150mtr earthing farm including 11No. augured earth rods at 6000mm deep.

BCM is proud to be part of this programme that will help electrify a key part of the nation’s railways ultimately contributing towards the reduction of polluting greenhouse emissions by innovating beyond diesel power towards cleaner electric power. This fits in with BCM and the Enable Group’s mission in delivering infrastructure which will render social value, including caring for our environment alongside supplying greater efficiencies and capabilities in our transport network.

It also illustrates the expression of our core values such as continuous improvement and collaboration as we work in tandem with SPL Powerlines UK to bring this project to life.