Just hangin’ around

After a dreadful, lost day that should have been at work, but wasn’t, a day of missed connections, misunderstandings and tension, I called a halt and headed for a cafe near Sutton. After tea, reflection and a few phone calls I headed home via the back lanes, hoping the countryside would lighten my still somewhat dark mood. It didn’t disappoint, but I also found something stunning, which took my breath away.

I’ve always admired people who work at heights, and have mentioned them several times on the blog. The skilled, confident and fearless people who maintain the National Grid transmission lines are especially fascinating to me. I’ve posted pictures over on my 365daysofbiking Tumblr journal over the passing months recording the works ongoing to recondition and re-cable the line between Ray Hall near Great Barr, the former Hams Hall switching compound and Drakelow, near Burton. Up until today, I’d only seen physical changes in the lines, not men actually at work. I stood and photographed these very relaxed chaps, working a hundred feet or so up for ages, spellbound.

The trance was only interrupted by some arsey landowner telling be to get off their farm track, which I’d walked up to get a better look. When I pointed out the guys working at height, they just didn’t get it. Some people just puzzle me.

There are three men around the central cross member of this pylon. Two are on the cables themselves, and the third is on the hanger. They are working to lower a set of insulators to the ground. Forge Lane, Little Aston. 3:52pm, Tuesday, 19th July 2011.

Working together, the three lowered the insulator carefully to the crews on the ground. When this was done, there was nothing for it but to wait. Forge Lane, Little Aston. 3:52pm, Tuesday, 19th July 2011.

As I rounded the bend in the lane, I got a better view, and learned something startling: The lines on the opposite side of the pylon were crackling in a distinctive fashion. Only one side of the transmission line was dead. Forge Lane, Little Aston. 3:58pm, Tuesday 19th July 2011.


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2 Responses to Just hangin’ around

  1. Pingback: Looks familiar… « BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

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