National Grid seeks support to engage with local residents on pylon construction

The National Grid is looking for a number of agencies to help it communicate with local residents on the thorny subject of pylon construction.

Controversial: pylon plans
Controversial: pylon plans

The national power transmission network is aiming to engage with 'key stakeholders' who would be affected by the proposed building of gas transmission pipelines and electricity overhead lines.

A National Grid spokeswoman said: 'We will require agencies to deliver a wide range of project-specific stakeholder engagement activities, including specialist public consultation and planning support to our major infrastructure projects across the UK.'

The news comes amid coverage of former TV presenter Carol Vorderman's vocal opposition to a 400,000 volt overhead power line that National Grid plans to erect close to her North Somerset countryside home. Vorderman has joined a campaign to force National Grid to withdraw its plans.

National Grid is investing heavily in the local PR drive, but the spokeswoman said it was not possible to put a figure on it as the utility may use 'a number of agencies to deliver different packages across the UK'.

Tenders will open next week and run until the end of January. Successful agencies will be named as part of a three-year framework from April 2010.

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