New 11kV substation upgrade

RJ Power North were invited by Calor Gas to participate in a tender process for a new 11kV substation upgrade project on their site. A pre site visit and meeting was conducted by our business development and operations team. All associated project documentations and site notes were collated, and a Tender document submitted.

Following the project being awarded to RJ Power North another site visit and meeting was conducted by our Senior Authorised Person & Project Manager who were identified to deliver the project, Final checks and associated paperwork for procurement of equipment and materials were produced. Risk assessments and method statements were produced and forwarded across to our client for approval of works with detailed methodology of work plans.

Scope of Works:

The project was completed over 5 working days across two phases.

Phase one of the project was to install the new HV Transformer on to a new formed raised concrete bunded plinth located externally to the 11kV substation. The new 11kV switchgear was installed and mounted on to a raised steel structure within the 11kV substation.

A Cable containment system was installed to allow new HV & LV cable routes to be accomplished. All associated Protection Testing and Commissioning of the new 11kV switchgear and associated 800kVA Transformer were completed post installation of cabling. New earthing matrix and earth bonding was completed, and safety critical tripping circuits were first fixed ready for phase two of the project for final connections and commissioning testing.

New HV & LV cables were installed and tested as part of the scope of work and further civil works completed to reveal the main HV incoming cable that supplied existing HV substation that was due to be disconnected and cut away off system. This work was in preparation for phase two of the project.

Phase two of the project was booked in out of hours so the existing substation could be shut down for the day whilst the rest of the works could be completed, this was all agreed with the client at planning stages.

The mains power to the existing substation was isolated locally from the client’s main intake substation. The RJ Power SAP completed all associated safety documentation and also completed cable identification testing and spiking procedures of the incoming HV cable ready for jointing. Also, existing HV apparatus and cabling was proved dead at points of work following safe working zone procedures, so existing apparatus could be disconnected and cut away off the system. The scope of works required the existing apparatus to be disconnected and made safe off system only as the client organised for the apparatus to be collected and recycled at a later date.

The LV cables from the existing transformer onsite were disconnected and removed from the clients main LV switchboard, and new LV cables from the new HV transformer were installed and connected into the existing LV switchboard. The existing HV incoming cable from main intake substation was prepared and a HV straight joint completed to provide new HV connection in to new HV substation switchgear.

The second fix of earthing matrix and earth bonding was then completed along with final connections of safety critical tripping circuits. Post installation commissioning testing was completed to test full integrity of new HV/LV system installed. The redundant HV switchgear and HV transformer were marked up and identified as out of service and off system and made safe for client to remove at later date.

The HV and LV system was then restored and post installation checks and testing was completed to confirm that the site network was healthy with no issues and was in back to normal service position.

Full onsite reports of the works were completed and forwarded back to the RJ Power office for final O&M project report to be completed and sent across to the client.

The RJ Power Engineering team that delivered the works consisted of: 1 x Senior Authorised Person, 1 x Protection Engineer, 1 X Electrical Fitter team (Fitter & Fitters mate), 1 x HV Jointer team (HV Jointer & Jointers mate)

Challenges and Solutions:

The main challenges of this projects were:

  • Site Conditions- Due to the site containing a vast amount of gas, the RJ Power engineers had to surrender their mobiles phones which made communication between the onsite team and the operation office support a challenge. To overcome this issue, we implemented keeping in touch calls during certain times of the day where the engineers had to leave the site and make the necessary calls to ensure consistency of communication.
  • Test access facilities- The current switchgear located at the main intake and adjacent substation that was being removed off system did not have the relevant test bushings located at the substations. Procurement of these test bushings was difficult as there was a limited amount available to hire due to the switchgear now being obsolete. The onsite engineering team managed to come up with a solution to this issue and safely managed to carry out all testing that was required.
  • Civils- Civils works was also highlighted as a slight issue onsite due to the foundations of the building where the cable runs were supposed to be routed and where the joint excavation was located. Due to the foundations being old and signs of crumbling when completing trial excavations, it was decided that a cable containment system would be installed. This was also the case within the 11kV substation, instead of digging out and creating new cable trenches a cable containment system was installed and steel structure was manufactured for the 11kV switchgear to be mounted on to get the satisfactory height for terminating the new HV cables in to. With this in place we also managed to save costs for our client and keep the project timetable on schedule.

Luton Direct to Air Rail Transit

A new Mass Passenger Transport (DART) system is being constructed to provide a fast transport link between the existing Luton Parkway Railway Station and Luton Airport, which is due to be in service in 2021. 

The MPT system will comprise a cable hauled train system with a dedicated station at Stirling Place, Kimpton Road, providing a direct link to Luton Airport.

RJ Power Connections were engaged to design and install a 4MVA power supply, emanating from the UKPN primary sub-station located at Eaton Green Road and terminating to the new MPT station at Kimpton Road, adjacent to the existing Luton Parkway Railway Station.

This project was a key deliverable on the critical path and was delivered on programme. It involved complex Stakeholder interfaces, which were negotiated through the provision of a Stakeholder Management Plan in order to liaise with Luton Borough Council Highways, London Luton Airport Ltd, UK Power Networks, Affinity Water and the Principal Contractor from the main site, Volker Fitzpatrick Kier


The scope of works included the design, supply and installation of a 1MVA 11000/400V unit substation to provide supplies for a cold storage unit and site accommodation. The contestable works for the 11kV cable and ring main unit (RMU) were carried out to UKPN standards and the transformer / LV works to Energy Assets standards as the adopting IDNO.

The entire project encompassed the following:

  • The system required a 4MVA power supply for Electrical, Mechanical and Rail system operation and the project delivery included a facility for regeneration to EREC G99 Standards.
  • Design and installation of a 4MVA power supply from the UKPN substation to the new MPT station, in compliance with UKPN Specification.
  • Excavation and re-instatement of approximately 2.2 kilometres of multi service trench. 
  • Installation of 4.4. kilometres of 11kV triplex cabling.
  • Working in collaboration with Affinity Water to minimize disruption to the busy local road network by delivering infrastructure installation on their behalf.
  • HV and LV installation of two new on site UKPN switch rooms to include the supply of two Ring Main Units and all associated switchgear and ancillaries.
  • All works were audited under Lloyds NERS registration scheme.
  • Full commissioning to UKPN requirements.


The client was very pleased with the quality of works that were delivered and provided by RJ Power Connections, with positive feedback in areas including stakeholder management and communication together with the quality of service and professionalism shown by our teams. They confirmed that they would be happy to work with us again in the future and would recommend RJ Power Connections to others.


RJ Power Connections specialise in Grid/Network Connections and Contestable Works, offering the client an alternative to using the local Distribution Network Operators (DNO). RJ Power Connections are a customer focused business that delivers high quality, flexible solutions for a wide range of utility connection requirements.

As a NERS accredited Independent Connection Provider (ICP), we have no contractual links to equipment suppliers or contractors, meaning we are justly independent and able to consider all available options for a project. We strive to build long term relationships with our clients to provide the optimal engineering solution whilst maintaining commercial advantages.


Swanton Farm

RJ Power Connections were engaged by A.C.Goatham & Son to install a 1MVA 11000/400V unit substation. This project was to provide supplies for a cold storage unit and site accommodation for a new business development. The programme of work activities were completed between March and September in 2020, with a number of key milestones across several workstreams of delivery.

Given location of the works taking place on farmland, it was critical that RJ Power Connections worked closely and collaboratively with the client, to ensure that the on-going farming operations on the site were not negatively impacted.


The scope of works was the design, supply and installation of a 1MVA 11000/400V unit substation to provide supplies for a cold storage unit and site accommodation. The contestable works for the 11kV cable and ring main unit (RMU) were carried out to UKPN standards and the transformer / LV works to Energy Assets standards as the adopting IDNO.

The total project encompassed the following:

  • Installation of a 1MVA Package Substation c/w close coupled RMU and 1600A LV ACB
  • Building of a GRP enclosure
  • Installation of 800 metres of 185mm Alu 11kV triplex cable
  • ‘HOT’ Site Earthing installation
  • HV Jointing cabling terminations
  • Implementation of a 100A LV metered supply point for site accommodation
  • On-site cable route excavation works and civil works


RJ Power Connections specialise in Grid/Network Connections and Contestable Works, offering the client an alternative to using the local Distribution Network Operators (DNO). RJ Power Connections are a customer focused business that delivers high quality and flexible solutions for a wide range of utility connection requirements.

As a NERS accredited Independent Connection Provider (ICP), we have no contractual links to equipment suppliers or contractors, meaning we are justly independent and able to consider all available options for a project. We strive to build long term relationships with our clients to provide the optimal engineering solution whilst maintaining commercial advantages.

Installation of New HV and LV Equipment

Project Overview

The RJ Power Networks team has completed the safe isolation, decommissioning, removal and disposal of an existing 6.6kV multi panel switchboard at the Natural History Museum, London. The fully managed work scope included all necessary planning and hot and cold commissioning for safe installation of a new 11 panel HV switchboard. RJ Power Networks also performed all required HV/LV/control cable works.

The existing switchboard asset had surpassed its design life, having been installed in the 1970’s and had become obsolete as a result of distribution improvements and safety requirements. This necessitated a full mains intake sub-station replacement.

The Switchgear within the National History Museum is critical to the operation of the distribution systems that serve the Natural History Museum, Science Museum and The Victoria & Albert Museum.

The works were programmed and resourced in order to deliver a full turnkey solution to meet a strict and challenging 6-week timescale. All considerations were made to accommodate zero interruptions to supply during operating hours, to ensure public access and business continuity throughout. Four separate shutdowns were required in order to allow safe working environments for personnel to achieve the installation and decommissioning works.

The Challenges and Solutions

As the Natural History Museum is the electrical distributor to both the Science Museum and the Victoria & Albert Museum, RJ Power Networks, when planning the project, had to consider the continuity of supply to the electrical networks of all three landmarks. The logistics of managing multiple stakeholder engagements was a challenge, as there was a need to ensure all involved were satisfied with the delivery approach for the project.

It was imperative that the electrical infrastructures of all three museums remained fully operational for the duration of the build (during normal working hours). This initially meant the key milestones of the project had to be carried out during the night or other offline periods. This also had to be carefully organised with the special events calendar for each museum and their private functions – each had many bespoke events for high profile customers regularly booked in with finish times at approximately 11pm each night.

Attention to detail and the highly professional working relationship between RJ Power Networks and all three Museums allowed for in depth hour-by-hour planning and project execution. Eight Months prior to the onsite build commencing, several planning meetings were held to ensure all potential risks had been identified and managed. This included the creation of a tailored communication channel dedicated for updates and the coordination between all stakeholders during the works.

RJ Power Networks also organised the local Distribution Network Operator (DNO) – UK Power Networks – to carry out the isolations and cable terminations onto their HV incomers. Engineering advances over the years removed the opportunity for UKPN to re-terminate in situ using Paper Insulated Lead Cable (PILC). A modern XLPE cable was therefore presented to the DNO HV incomers and transition joints, which was installed on bespoke elevated joint bay positions.

During planned intrusive investigation works it was discovered that the existing Bus section could be separated, allowing for continuity of power supply and the replacement equipment being located within the original Switchgear footprint. This was agreed by all to be one of the major risks to the Project, which was amplified by missing O&M details. This activity was an unknown for Phase 1 of the works and could have had a large impact on the planned timeframe. The strict shutdown period added pressure to the delicate dismantling and reconfiguring activity. It was communicated and known to all stakeholders that this critical element of the project had to be delivered in accordance with the hour by hour plan agreed or there would have been repercussions to the power supply of all three museums when opening for business the next morning.

The decision was made onsite to contact one of our specialist switchgear renovators who work closely with old switchgear and apparatus. They fortunately were able to locate a set of instruction manuals from when the original panel was in fabrication and shared them with us to aid our separation works. This source of information was essential to deliver the separation aspect of the works within the tight timeframe that was allocated by the museums.

The project was collaboratively planned and executed to an extremely high standard, that our customers have come to enjoy and expect from RJ Power Networks. All Engineers and Project Managers that were involved are extremely proud of this project as is it one of the largest and most complicated that the Networks team has completed.

Antony Wenden, Operations Manager for RJ Power Networks recently reflected on the successful delivery of the project:

“As a Project Manager, I feel it is extremely important to recognise this project as an example of how things should be done.

“With safety being of paramount importance, each project’s success is measured against what is known as the Project’s Trilemma (Time, Cost & Quality). This project was successfully delivered with no accidents or incidents, executed in alignment with the timescales permitted, delivered to the highest quality standard and achieved the as sold margin position.

“I would like to extend my thanks and gratitude to all involved, a diversely skilled group, with enthusiasm and willingness to support each other. Teamwork, as always, played an extremely important role in this successful completion of this project. Every member of this team has demonstrated their ability to work extremely hard, under pressure and professionally from start to finish – they are credit to the business and a fantastic asset.”

Old Oak Common

RJ Power Rail has completed its electrical and mechanical decommissioning contract works on behalf of Principal Contractor Colas Rail, for the Stage 2 and 3 decommissioning of Old Oak Common Depot. The scope also included civil engineering activities such as Under Road Crossings (URX’s), Ducting and Troughing Route works and Protective Barrier installation works.

As part of Phase 1 of the HS2 rail network, a new interchange station is being constructed at Old Oak Common to provide a rapid and convenient access for passengers between High Speed 2 (HS2), Crossrail and the Great Western Main Line (GWML) services.

The site, which is occupied by both Great Western (GWR) and Heathrow Express (HEx), required decommissioning and was a critical piece of work for the overall HS2 programme in order to facilitate the commencement of the HS2 enabling works associated with the GWML.

The works included four Sub-Stations:

  • Sub-Station B1
  • Sub-Station B5
  • Sub-Station T
  • Sub-Station S

and a number of 6.6kV HV Feeders:

  • Cable 43A
  • Cable 43C
  • Cable 44
  • Cable 45

In order to achieve the space requirements for the OOC interchange station, the relocation of GWR and HEx services from the existing Old Oak Common Depot was necessary.

A number of challenges were faced, however, RJ Power Rail’s capabilities in the multi-disciplined and HV market, combined with its ability to offer additional works and engineering input made it the ideal contractor for this project. With vast experience as a Tier-2 contractor for major schemes, RJ Power Rail offered a consistent, reliable and flexible service, through exceptional expertise and proven project delivery.

RJ Power Rail commenced its works in December 2018, decommissioning the Depot in a number of stages, in order to ensure that operations were maintained. RJ Power Rail’s works covered Stages 2 and 3 (which in the end were combined) and successfully completed all of its works in May 2019.

The successful delivery of the project enabled the undertaking of the next stage of HS2 works – a project with the promise of developing a faster and more efficient rail network for the UK.

Project Deliverables

RJ Power Rail’s work scope included providing all necessary stakeholder management and permits to work for the project and consisted of the following deliverables. All works were fully tested and commissioned and involved the provision of all necessary hand back and handover documentation including certificates and redline drawings for as-built purposes:

Mechanical Works

  • Decommissioning and isolation of gas supplies within depot, including purging pipes and cutting sections of pipes
  • Decommissioning and isolating of the lubricating oil, diesel oil, and coolant pipe supplies within the depot, including draining down reservoir tanks and pipes and also cutting pipes
  • Isolation of water supplies to the water tower at water meters and supply to the HST shed
  • Isolation of depot fire hydrant pipework system back to the first fire hydrant located at depot entrance ensuring this hydrant remains operational
  • Decommissioning of compressed air supply and associated equipment in HST shed
  • Diversion of the water supply to the Heathrow Express train wash shed – this also included:

Civil Engineering and groundworks for the relocation of the water meter covering:

  • Under Road Crossing (URX) complete, including excavation and reinstatement
  • Installation of access chambers and buried routes using 150mm ducting
  • Installation of buried routes using C/1/9 trough
  • Installation of C/1/9 surface laid trough routes
  • Installation of protective barriers

Electrical Works

  • Isolation and decommission of LV supplies to multiple equipment located in all parts of the depot.
  • Decommissioning of LV supply transformers
  • Diversion and installation of existing and new LV cables to points heating control cubicles and the Heathrow Express train wash shed
  • Installation of new lighting columns, associated cabling, column bases and route works, including concrete troughing and buried ducting
  • Relocation of points heating control panel, track side boxes, 110v transformers. Installation of concrete bases associated cabling and route works
  • Decommissioning and recovery of points heating equipment for track plain lining
  • Isolation and diversion of the high voltage 6.6kv ring main circuit
  • Installation of new HV cable, jointing of HV cable, testing and commissioning
  • Spiking and recovery of redundant HV cable
  • Isolation and slew/diversion of the HV 25kv OHL feeder cable into new route

This also included the following:

Civil Engineering Works

  • Installation of raised Armco GRP trough and concrete trough route for containment of 6.6kv ring main and 25kv

Challenges and Solutions

Site Logistics

During the works, careful logistical traffic management was implemented by RJ Power Rail, with all deliveries being pre-planned and sequenced in accordance with a Traffic Management Plan. All vehicles accessing the site had to be in line with the directives given by the site Traffic Marshals.

All plant/pedestrian interfaces had to be managed around the nominated site storage and parking areas too. To combat this, segregated walking zones were created and a Banksman was present during the transportation and lifting into position of all materials for the works.

Stakeholder Interface

RJ Power Rail faced challenges with the timescale of this project due to the number of different project interfaces during the course of these works. With the works being of a multi-disciplinary nature and with multiple contractors needing to negotiate access arrangements, RJ Power Rail’s team needed to be extremely flexible and work collaboratively with others, when approaching and delivering key milestones in their programme.

This liaison was particularly important, as the electrical and water supply services were still required to be available within the depot. RJ Power Rail carefully interfaced with the Colas Rail team, Heathrow Express and GWR in order to programme and plan a phased decommissioning and diversion of the services, so as to ensure as little disruption as possible.

Unknown Buried Services

The project was further challenged, when it was found that the civils design through the depot access road was not achievable, due to the presence of a large amount of unknown buried services and the radius bend of the existing waterpipe.

RJ Power Rail proposed to move the excavation to one side of the access road, away from the middle of the road, allowing the road to remain partially open, which also gave enough distance from the existing buried surfaces and allowed the excavation to run straight rather than stagger around other buried services. This in turn made the installation of the water pipe easier, due to the fact that it could only change direction by an angle of either 45° or 90°.

Roadway Construction

The road plates were required to sit flush to the road to eliminate tripping hazards. To achieve this the design showed a 45mm recess to be broken out either side of the excavation, with a 20mm cementitious grout laid for the steel road plates to sit on. Due to the composite construction of the road this proved to be unachievable due to the amount of re-bar present.

RJ Power Rail provided a solution that involved excavating the full width of the road plates, applying shuttering to either side of the trench width and then building back up to the recess level, in order to achieve a flush road plate.

The design also showed the excavation connecting onto an existing oil/diesel pipe trench, however, during the works, the trench was found to be full of diesel and oil.

RJ Power Rail resolved this by core drilling through the walls of the existing trench to allow the waterpipe and 6.6kv HV cables to divert over the diesel and oil. This enabled the excavation to continue and run parallel with the oil trench, until such a time when it could be diverted and then connected back to the originally designed route.

6.6kv Ring Main and 25kv HV System

The diversion of the 6.6kv ring main and 25kv OHL high voltage system was an extremely challenging undertaking.

Old Oak Common Depots’ electrical distribution is fed from a vast network of 6.6kV substations (B5, B1, T, S, D and E) in the form of a ring main derived from an 11kV Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE) supply. The ring main is operated with a normally open point as two radial 6.6kV circuits of which the HV switching equipment was locally controlled/operated with no indication or operation control from the railway electrical control room.

The two traction 25kv OHL feeder cables originated from Kensal Green Feeder Station and terminated at structure J/05/125 in the Hex depot and were affected by the Stage 3 works, with both cables running in parallel for the entire length.

One of the two 25kV cables is a feeder cable carrying traction current from Kensal Green Feeder Station section KAGA/805/HV/L and terminated to the sealing end of structure J/05/125.

The other 25kV cable is a traction return cable from Kensal Green Return Current Bus Bar (RCBB) section KAGA/HV/805/N and terminated on spider plate SP/05/101.

This complex HV power arrangement, necessitated the need for alternative HV feeds for both the 6.6kv ring main and 25kv OHL HV circuits to enable continuous supply to the railway infrastructure while the diversions/slewing of the HV cables were also undertaken.

RJ Power Rail’s highly qualified substation level `A`, liaised closely with the substation maintainer, electrical control room and Scottish and Southern Energy, to produce a clear and defined sequence of HV switching operations, for both the 6.6kv ring main and the 25kv traction cables, which enabled a continuous high voltage supply to the operational railway whilst works were undertaken.

The Benefits

RJ Power Group’s collaborative working approach allowed seamless integration into Colas Rail’s S&C Alliance practices.

As a vastly experienced, multi discipline and High Voltage service provider, RJ Power Rail was able to call on its expert knowledge to provide consultation on design and delivery elements of the project.

This extended to best practice advice, following an unexpected cable outage at the project. RJ Power Rail’s project team organised and presented an HV awareness presentation to Colas Rail, advising on all necessary standards and applicable guidelines.


“RJ Power Rail’s project and engineering teams pulled out all stops to ensure this electrification support project was delivered on time and to specification. In addition to this, the team worked collaboratively with us to support changes in design and perform additional works that will benefit the wider scheme.

“I would like to thank all involved for their efforts in this completing this project.”

Joseph Smales
Project Manager – Infrastructure
Colas Rail

Great Western Modernisation Earthing and Bonding

RJ Power Rail were engaged by long-term partner Amey Rail and their Thames Valley Area (TVA) Project team, to install earthing and bonding systems for various trackside assets. The bonding systems were required to enhance the system protection by providing a sufficiently low impedance earth for Locations within the OLE ‘dewirement’ zone. This ensured that in the event of the OLE coming into contact with the location, that the traction return path can conduct the voltage for a sufficient time until the OLE system protective devices operate.

To complete the works, RJ Power Rail supplied 10 installation teams during the various stages of the project over approximately 100 linear miles covering a wide geographical area from Maidenhead to Bristol.

The Great Western Route Modernisation (GWRM) programme is tasked with the delivery of a 25KV OLE railway with more frequent/faster train services providing more seats and improved stations. In short, this represents the biggest investment for this part of the national rail infrastructure since it was first created in the 1830s.

This GWRM programme covers approximately 10 years of continuous railway infrastructure enhancement works inclusively of a number of major works such as Track Remodelling, Resignalling and overall Electrification.

Project Deliverables

RJ Power Rail deliverables were to carry out surveys to identify lineside assets and the review of designs for providing bonding Systems to be able to electrify the GWML Project. Our scope was to install all types of bonding systems, whether we were connecting to the existing Return Screen Conductor (RSC) using Pfisterer ground tap connections, 120mm bonding cables to extraneous metalwork, or Cross bonding from Spider Plates to Angle Cleats, RSC or to Track. Once the bonds were installed all torque settings were recorded, bonds fitted with heat-shrink markers and fitted with Traffolyte labels.

Pre-commencement stage

  • Undertake site surveys to identify assets that require bonding

Implementation stage

  • Installation and commissioning of lineside assets
  • Installation and commissioning of cross bonding change to the RAM

Challenges and Solutions

Multi-functional solution
Ensuring that a facility is properly grounded and bonded at the design and construction phase can reduce expensive downtime and equipment failure in the future. Most importantly, it can eliminate any potential safety issues.

RJ Power Rail provided optimal protection of personnel and facilities with earthing concepts that suited the client’s needs, including calculation rail potential and touch voltages.

Our earthing and bonding solutions ensured minimal electrical resistance, good corrosion resistance and the ability of dissipating high fault current effectively.

Why RJ Power Rail

RJ Power Rail provides design, installation and commissioning expertise for of all types of earthing and bonding systems including sub-station earthing. This is prevalent when it comes to “Hot Sites” which are locations where the voltage between the sub-station and or switching station earth bar and the local earth (UTE), exceed a defined voltage limit (UTE MAX), during a phase-to-earth fault. RJ Power Rail can provide valuable support in both consulting and designing efficient earthing rectification covering:

Sub-Station Earthing – from early engagement and consulting with Network Rail Engineers, RJ Power Rail can design, install and commission all types of earthing arrangements from “Hot Site” rectification, to new installations using the standard methodology of driving earth rods into the ground utilising pneumatic drivers, to core drilling and installing earthing systems using Marconite Conductive Concrete.

Bonding – from new installations to maintenance of existing systems in predominantly 25kV areas, RJ Power Rail can design and install all types of bonding systems whether it be connecting from the existing Return Screen Conductor (RSC) using Pfisterer ground tap connections or connecting 120mm bonding cables to extraneous metalwork.

DC Cable Doubling Wessex

This DC cable renewal project involved the installation, testing and commissioning of new DC Cables which was derived from the DC Cable Refurbishment Woking – Basingstoke Route Requirements Document issued by Network Rail (NR).

RJ Power Rail were invited to competitively tender and subsequently secured the full scope of works for the renewal and modification of DC LV Cables and the doubling of identified +ve cables at the Open Route sections/locations between St Johns and Barton Mills Sub-Stations.

The line of route between St Johns (near Woking station) and Barton Mill (near Basingstoke Station) on the Bournemouth Main Line was identified as being at particularly high risk of failure, hence the urgent requirement for this project. The third rail electrification system in NR’s Wessex area has large number of DC distribution cables used as part of its traction power system. The age and condition of certain cables and problems with the reliability of lugs has resulted in failures impacting directly on train performance.

RJ Power Rail’s contract covered replacement and modification work on positive DC cables to enhance traction power performance in this area, increasing the life expectancy of the cables and reducing the amount of future faulting work for NR’s maintenance teams.

During the first part of the works, cables and cable lugs were provided free-issue. During the second part of the works, RJ Power Rail supplied all materials for the works. All materials were delivered to the RJ Power Rail secure facility, which allowed the rail team to deliver a fully logistically managed solution.

Works, which were fully managed and self-delivered by RJ Power Rail’s in-house team, required completion during TIII possessions, requiring full access planning and arrangements in conjunction with NR’s Works Delivery Team.

The project was successfully completed to meet Network Rail’s requirements.

Project Deliverables

The scope of works was to survey, produce detailed reports and install new 750v DC Traction cables at various locations between St Johns Substation to Barton Mills Substation stretching over 20 linear miles:

Pre-commencement stage

  • Undertake site surveys of 4 operational lines along 20 linear miles (26m 00ch to 46m 00ch)
  • Update Network Rail’s existing conductor rail drawings
  • Compile a detailed asset report of the existing infrastructure to allow NR Works Delivery to manage scope
    change to the RAM

Design stage

It was agreed with Network Rail that this particular project would not require the usual Form A & B design process as the works entailed replacing existing infrastructure. The scope would be, therefore, defined by the workbank reports and the updated conductor rail drawings. This process was agreed by the Network Rail RAM and project team.

Implementation stage

  • Surveys
  • Produce survey data reports
  • Production of DC Traction cables
  • Installation of DC Traction cables
  • Test and produce relevant ITP’s
  • Hand back

Challenges and Solutions

Critical planning

All the works associated with this project required TIII possessions. As there were not enough 27hr or 52hr possessions, most of the works had to be delivered in mid-week night possessions providing a maximum of 3hrs clear working time. The works involved were super critical, due to the number of previous failures within the infrastructure. The RJ Power Rail Access Team and the Network Rail Possessions Access Manager worked collaboratively to ensure an achievable programme was developed.

Logistics management

RJ Power Rail took delivery of approx. 40 cable drums that were free issued from Network Rail. These cable drums were delivered into RJ Power Rail’s own secure depot facility. All the drum numbers and their locations were attributed to a ‘workbank datasheet’ to provide full supply and installation traceability. The second part of the project required RJ Power Rail to supply the materials and log them in the same method.

Using the workbank datasheet, all the cables were then cut to the required length and one end of the cable was lugged in readiness. These cables were then palletised and numbered relating to the mileages and the route numbering scheme.

The site team then loaded the pallets onto our lorry and delivered them to the site on a ‘just in time’ basis prior to the possession.

Delivery knowhow

Given the tight time constraints of the access regime, the experienced in-house team led by Adam Lovegrove were able to deliver and install on average 15 cables per week. This quantity, in restricted locations and during small possession durations, could only have been achieved with the years of knowledge and experience that the RJ Power Rail Team has.

Why RJ Power Rail

RJ Power Rail has an established Team that combines design, engineering and delivery expertise across all rail electrification activities and can be trusted with the most complex and demanding of projects.

The company offers the full range of rail electrification and power services from one-off cable repairs to multimillion-pound HV, LV and Scada D&B projects.

They are an experienced power solutions delivery provider who work collaboratively with their clients and own supply chain as a reliable partner, providing exceptional expertise and proven project delivery in respect of HV Electrification and DC Switchgear schemes.

Installation of New Cast Resin Transformer and Housing, Ring Main Unit and associated HV cabling at Plantation place

The Networks Team recently completed an extremely challenging project for CBRE as a preferred supplier within Plantation Place at 30 Fenchurch Street, installing a new Cast Resin Transformer and Housing, Ring Main Unit and associated HV cabling.

Project Deliverables

RJ Power Networks scope of works included the following:

  • Prelims works
  • Supply and installation of a Ringmaster RMU RN2c T2
  • Bus bar Modifications (Subject to Transformer Construction Drawings)
  • HV Cable Terminations of all equipment and the supply of adequate Materials to complete the job
  • Transformer Internal HV Connections
  • Supply of adequate Earthing
  • Containment/bespoke Monoblock fabrication
  • Labour to install, test and commission
  • Supply and management of lift and shift Sub Contractor labour
  • Project Management
  • Mobile access equipment supplied to enable the construction of TX housing and Bespoke Busbar fabrication
  • Supply and management of UK Power Networks attendance

Challenges and Solutions

The Networks team faced many challenges during the process of this project, with one of the most demanding aspects being the logistics of the sequenced changeover, the removal process and positioning of the replacement equipment within a third basement level, as it was only achievable via a lift shaft and a narrow corridor system.

Due to the difficult nature of the plant movement process, the job required a collaboration of specialist contractors to achieve a successful outcome, with all demonstrating their skills to achieve the highest level of engineering competence.

The plant movement was completed by Radius, with the process of removing the old transformer and installing the new transformer commencing at the top of a lift shaft. The old transformer needed to be lifted two floors where it was temporarily stored in the clients carpark. The new replacement transformer was manoeuvred down to the basement using the same lift path. These works had to be completed in a 24-hour window, which was extremely challenging to all involved, and required a lot of pre-planning between the Networks team, Radius and the client for the plant movement to be a complete success.

A bespoke LV Busbar Chamber and 4000A LV Busbar had to be manufactured off site, this was an extremely challenging process as the Networks team were unable to determine the exact measurements of the transformers LV connections. RJ Power Networks panel fabrication and Copper specialist, Darren Young, executed this task faultlessly and the equipment installed was inch perfect.

The team were faced with a miss delivery of parts by the manufacturer. The HV Bushings and HV Termination Box, which bolted onto the transformer housing, was not included on the original delivery from the manufacturing warehouse in France. It was only discovered that these essential parts were missing midway through the project, as a result the team were put under extreme pressure to locate the missing parts to ensure the job was kept to the extremely strict and tight schedule of works. After intense conversations with the supplying manufacturer the parts were located in the warehouse and delivered from France via a specialist courier service, which worked through the night to ensure the parts arrived to us on a next day delivery before the energisation phase of the job took place. The manufacturer really performed and understood our clients needs to ensure the project did not slip behind schedule.

The new equipment needed to be installed during the week without any interruptions to the client’s day to day running of its multi tenanted building. The method of installation had to be revised numerous times until RJ Power Networks identified a solution to all of the issues that had been originally encountered.

The overall job went extremely well, the extraction of the old transformer and installation of the new was a success and a great achievement for all staff and contractors involved. Most importantly the client was extremely happy with the end result.

Thank you to the RJ Power Networks team as well as all of our specialist contractors used to complete this job. The project ran smoothly despite the demanding logistics.

Why RJ Power Networks

RJ Power Networks undertakes a range of installation, of HV to LV equipment in private distribution networks, as well as maintaining existing HV and LV equipment, making us the ideal company for this project.

We continually strive to offer a consistent, reliable and efficient service to all of our clients and future clients. The Networks divisions is a business led by passionate individuals that care about the quality of the work produced, and retaining collaborative and sustainable partnerships, with the ultimate goal of securing customer loyalty and forging strong long-term business relationships.

Refurbishment of 2 No Existing 6.6kV/433V Substations

RJ Power Networks’ (RJP) team has completed a total refurbishment of 2 No existing 6.6kV/433V substations at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A).

The existing HV switchgear within substation B at the V&A was past its operational life cycle and obsolete in regard to obtaining spares. The upgrade works to the substation were designed to form part of the reinforcement of the existing HV network to accommodate any future site load increases.

The V&A is the world’s leading museum of Art and Design, housing a collection of around 2.3 million objects spanning over 5000 years of creative history. The museum attracts visitors from all over the globe and is an iconic part of London’s make up. We are proud to have been chosen to deliver this project for them.


The overall objective of the project was to replace all the equipment to the very latest specification to be able to accommodate any future load increases, with the minimum of disruption to the V&A’s busy schedule.

RJ Power Networks proposed solution included the following works:

  • All associated High Voltage Switching to ensure minimal interruption to the museum
  • Phased removal of existing switchgear
  • Organisation of adequate red route road closures
  • Organisation of entire lift and shift activities
  • Carry out all associated fabric works to aid in a smooth deliver for the lift and shift aspect of the project.
  • Organisation of the manufactures attendance to site to build, test and commission the transformers and ring main units
  • High voltage cable replacement, terminations and associated pressure testing
  • Associated low voltage cable works
  • Upgrade of the substation earthing system to ensure adequate resistance to earth
  • Installation of substation EPO circuit
  • Associated Site Acceptance Testing
  • Upgrade of substation lighting
  • Substation compliance works (first aid kit, appropriate Health and Safety signage etc)
  • Painting of substation walls, ceiling and floors
  • Safe removal and disposal of hazardous waste
  • Issue of Operations and Maintenance manual on job completion


The project duration was four weeks and at no time was the public access to the museum to be affected, as it was scheduled to run over a school holiday which is peak footfall times for the museum. With this in mind, there was only allowance for minimal shutdown times, with each shutdown to be completed overnight on Sunday to the early hours of Monday morning – with one shut down providing the Networks team only two hours to complete all live testing, commissioning and HV switching.

The logistics of the project meant the project was extremely challenging, the team had to work with the equipment suppliers and our logistics and plant movement company, DSM Ltd, to create a bespoke installation solution involving multiple challenging lifts with a crane – with little room for error (40mm). This also proved challenging when it came to the transportation of the team’s own materials and equipment down to the moat.

The use of the crane for the project required two road closures of Cromwell Road to be able to operate the crane safely, however the scheduling of the road closure took extensive prior planning and cooperation between RJ Power Networks, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea council and the museum to be able to organise a date and time that suited all parties. Both road closures were a success and the lift and shift completed by DSM Ltd was outstanding.

As a result of the tight space and unique installation plan, the RJ Power Networks Team had to organise the two transformers to be shipped and delivered in parts. Each transformer had to be manoeuvred through a single door opening with 20mm clearance. The manufacturers were then required to attend site to build, fill with oil, commission and hermetically seal the two transformers in situ within the substation at the V&A Museum.

RJ Power Networks teams’ extensive planning and preliminary works that took place enabled the project to run without delay or failure, the team were successful implementing this plan and as a result the job ran smoothly.

Special praise to Callum Turner the lead Project Engineer, for the well organised and executed job. The Victoria and Albert Museum job was completed to the high standard that is both expected by our client and always delivered by the RJ Power Networks team.


“The V&A museum commissioned the design of a complete refurbishment of 2 No existing 6.6kV/400V substations. RJP provided pre-construction advice and supported the client’s design team during the design development stages of the project.

“Following the contract award, RJP were quick to mobilise and provide the necessary CDM advice and documentation. The projects’ budgetary constraints meant that it was necessary to separate the equipment procurement from the execution of the works; which RJP supported and delivered the project over two financial terms.

“RJP; unprompted provided all necessary construction documentation to the clients team; avoiding the need for a protracted approvals process at the critical stage of the construction programme.

“The installation of the transformer was a challenging operation and RJP worked with their logistics company to provide a bespoke equipment installation solution; meeting the requirements of the local authority and addressing the client’s concerns with respect to the moving of equipment close to the listed building fabric. The Midel filled Transformers were installed in the constrained substation in modular form and reassembled by the specialist equipment supplier; who provided full testing certificates.

“The installation of the 2 No. 800kVA Transformers and associated Ring Main Units was executed and delivered on time and on budget. Importantly the replacement of the equipment resulted in only a minimal programmed isolation of the electrical supply to the building.”

Mark Freeman
JRG Electrical Consulting


RJ Power Networks undertakes a range of installation and maintenance works, from control cabling through to the provision of high voltage ring-main systems in private distribution networks, as well as maintaining existing HV equipment, making us the ideal company for this project.

We continually strive to offer a consistent and reliable service to all of our clients and future clients, as Networks is a business led by passionate individuals that care about quality, environmental processes and procedures and developing collaborative and sustainable partnerships, with the ultimate goal of securing customer loyalty and forging strong long-term business relationships.

Emergency Replacement of LVAC Panel

RJ Power Rail (RJPR) has successfully installed, tested and commissioned a Technivel panel, which included providing a design for re-routing the cables, for this LVAC panel at Streatham substation on behalf of Network Rail (NR).

The rail team provided a tender and were subsequently awarded the LVAC panel replacement works, which came about as a result of a catastrophic failure to NR’s Allen West LVAC panel located in Streatham substation’s A rectifier room, which is being fed by 2No 415V supplies derived from the 33kv network and 1No 415V back up supply from the DNO.

The proposed replacement Technivel LVAC panel was actually a decommissioned panel located in Lewisham substation and due to the serious nature of this failure, RJPR immediately mobilised in order to assess both the condition and suitability of the pre-used Technivel panel. On confirmation, RJPR formed their design and constructability teams within just 48 hours, met with NR to agree the action plan and commenced their Form B E&P design.

The plan was to disconnect and remove the pre-used panel from its original location in Lewisham and install in Streatham substation’s HV switchgear room. Incoming supplies to the LVAC panel were derived from AT516, AT552 and a DNO isolation transformer. Incoming supplies were rated 140kVA, 200A. The new Technivel LVAC panel was rated 300A.

Logistics at both ends were always going to be a challenge for this emergency replacement. By utilising machinery and equipment removal specialists, due to the panel size, weight and shape, RJPR were able to effectively manage the movement of the panel at both ends, with minimal impact on other adjacent stakeholders.

Once the panel was at Streatham, RJ Power Rail’s Testing and Commissioning Engineers took control and commenced the important task of stripping down and testing the panel. After a period of intensive work, it was determined that the panel was in good condition. After the replacement of all BS88 fuses and the tightening of all the busbars the panel was ready to be connected.

The only route for the supply cables from the transformers to the LVAC panel were at high level on an existing ladder tray. With the ground beneath uneven, the erection of GRP scaffolding to allow existing supplies to be removed and new cables to be installed was also challenging. Once in place, the RJPR installation team laid all new cable route to internal areas using ladder tray and then safely installed the heavy duty LV power cables on top of the ladder tray and along the external containment.

RJ Power Rail’s Lead Test and Commissioning Engineer (Peter Jackson) then formulated a complex and multiple staged changeover plan, in order to commission the LVAC panel and de-commission and make safe the existing damaged panel.

We are delighted to announce that all works were completed on time to an exemplary standard and to the complete satisfaction of the client Network Rail.


The project entailed the emergency replacement of a failed LVAC panel within Streatham substation B, without disrupting the railway or endangering personnel. RJ Power Rail’s scope included for the full Form B E&P design in respect of the collection, delivery, installation and commissioning of a freeissue Technivel LVAC panel at Streatham Substation. The existing Allen West LVAC panel at Streatham substation was also to be disconnected and removed.

RJ Power Rail’s delivered a fully risk managed staged solution, providing all necessary HV assessments and delivering a fully tested and commissioned project for entry into service, which included the following works:

Pre-commencement stage

  • Condition assessment at Lewisham substation of the pre-used LVAC Technivel panel to determine its suitability for use at Streatham
  • Lift, Shift and Delivery of the LVAC panel from Lewisham to Streatham substation
  • Stripping down and testing of the panel

Design Stage

  • Constructability assessments and Form B Design

Implementation Stage 1

  • Install the new Technivel LVAC panel.
  • Verify correct installation of LVAC panel control wires
  • Install all new cables
  • Terminate all new cables at the Technivel LVAC end
  • Terminate cable MC001 into the HV switchgear marshalling cabinet following disconnection and removal of the existing wiring
  • Carefully terminate cable MC002 into the Supervisory marshalling cabinet following disconnection and removal of the existing wiring
  • Pre commission the interface between the Technivel LVAC, the Selhurst ECR and the Streatham HV switchgear
  • Technivel LVAC panel 110V control supply is derived from 3No 750VA, 415/440 to 110V transformers

Implementation Stage 2

  • Confirm the Streatham PSP is supplied from PSP Supply No.1
  • Isolate AT552 LV in order to isolate PSP Supply No.2 at the Allen West LVAC panel
  • Isolate PSP Supply No. 2 at the PSP to prevent backfeed to the Allen West LVAC panel
  • Terminate the new 95mm2 cable “TX552-LVAC C2” at the AT552 secondary
  • Energise the Technivel LVAC panel from AT552
  • Divert the existing 70mm2 PSP Supply No.2 cable from the Allen West to the Technivel LVAC panel
  • Energise PSP Supply No.2 at the Technivel LVAC panel

Implementation Stage 3

  • At the PSP, changeover supply from PSP Supply No.1 to PSP Supply No.2
  • Isolate AT516 LV. This will in effect isolate PSP Supply No.1 at the Allen West LVAC panel
  • Isolate PSP Supply No.1 at the PSP to prevent backfeed to the Allen West LVAC panel
  • Terminate the new 95mm2 cable “TX516-LVAC C1” at the AT516 secondary
  • Energise the AT516 feed into the Technivel LVAC panel
  • Divert the existing 70mm2 PSP Supply No.1 cable from the Allen West to the Technivel LVAC panel
  • Energise PSP Supply No.1 at the Technivel LVAC panel

Implementation Stage 4

  • Divert Substation A domestic supply from the Allen West to the Technivel LVAC panel
  • Divert Substation B domestic supply from the Allen West to the Technivel LVAC panel
  • Isolate the DNO isolation transformer. Terminate the cable “DNO TX-LVAC C3” Into the isolation transformer secondary
  • Energise the DNO transformer feed into the Technivel LVAC panel

Implementation Stage 5

  • Disconnect and remove the Allen West LVAC panel


Critical planning
Due to the project criticality, the planning, programming and coordination of the works was jointly carried out by RJ Power Rail and Network Rail, which involved several workshops being organised to ensure that all aspects of the project were covered and agreed well in advance of the commencement on site.

Multi-functional works
RJ Power faced challenges with the timescale of this project due to the number of different project interfaces during the course of these works. With the works being of a multi-functional nature and with access arrangements being key, RJ Power Rail’s team needed to be extremely flexible and work collaboratively when approaching and delivering key milestones in their programme.

Design interface
The design complexities around the signalling interface, necessitated a staged approach. By completing a pre-commencement stage in advance of the design work and then five separate implementation stages, RJ Power Rail’s flexible approach, allowed the project to be effortlessly delivered, with a high degree collaborative interface throughout.

Logistics management
Careful logistical management in connection with the pre-used panel was required by RJ Power Rail. All deliveries were pre-planned in accordance with a detailed logistics and TM Plan. All vehicles accessing the site had to be compliant, and in line with the directives given by Traffic Marshals. All plant/pedestrian interfaces had to be managed around the nominated site area, with segregated zones provided and Banksman present during the transportation and lifting of the panel at both Lewisham and its final destination at Streatham substation.

Delivery knowhow
Poorly identified supervisory control, indication and alarm terminals also had to be identified with no drawings available for the 1950’s supervisory marshalling panels. Original LVAC panel wiring had to be identified and carefully removed through fragile wiring and terminals. When, new supervisory wiring was installed and tested, a supervisory fault was traced to a blown fuse in the supervisory, which was also replaced. A number of fuses were found to be missing from all outgoing ways, these were sourced quickly and replaced, this prompted the question of what else had been removed or interfered with whilst the unit was out of use, a thorough investigation revealed no further issues.


RJ Power Rail has an established team that combines design, engineering and delivery expertise across all rail electrification activities and can be trusted with the most complex and demanding of projects.

The company offers the full range of rail electrification and power services from one-off cable repairs to multi-million-pound HV, LV and Scada D&B projects.

They are an experienced power solutions delivery provider who work collaboratively with their clients and own supply chain as a reliable partner, providing exceptional expertise and proven project delivery in respect of HV Electrification and DC Switchgear schemes.