There are no trains through Abbey Wood again this weekend and the main task
has been to install the shell of a new electricity sub-station, so that cables
may be transferred from the old brick building before knocking it down and preparing for the realignment of the North Kent line.
The ‘boxes’ and some electrical equipment which will stand in the open to facilitate cooling were delivered by lorry and the crane swung into action at eleven o’clock on Saturday morning, however there was a snag. The hooks at the end of the crane’s cables were too large to fit the eyes on the top of the tin boxes. The site engineer was not at all happy with the crane contractor. One might have expected a machine of that size to carry a box of useful bits and pieces. There were never less than eleven men in attendance so it must have been an expensive mistake.
After someone was sent to find some suitable shackles and a break for lunch work recommenced at 1:30. Transferring the big bits across the railway line was child’s play but bolting the small box (Photo 13 below) to the back of a bigger one (Photo 14) took more than an hour.
At five o’clock work ceased with one transformer left aboard the second delivery lorry overnight. It was still there at 08:00 on Sunday with not an orange suit to be seen but by the time I returned at nine it was in place (Final Photo).
Whether the new sub-station is to supply both the old 750 volt line and the new 25kV system depends on who you ask, but given that the old brick building is no more than half the size of the new it may be reasonable to assume it is for both.
Photos 1-6 below show some of the preparatory work. The trough around the main structures is to be filled with shingle as part of the drainage system.
The isolated photo above is of work some half a mile east of Abbey Wood station, near Tunstall Way, which appears to consist of digging holes and filling them in again. Probably some sort of ground condition exploration.