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Truck and Track

Winter 2018



Over two days in July, the Collett Team turned heads as we

travelled across the North West with a 170 Tonne Super Grid


Loaded to our specialist 550 Tonne capacity Scheuerle girder

bridge, and accompanied by two heavy tractor units in push/pull

formation, the 69.6m long combination travelled the 67miles from

Ellesmere Port to Cellarhead Substation in Stoke-on-Trent.

“In the planning of this movement the Collett Projects Team liaised

directly with West Midlands Cheshire and Staffordshire Police

Forces to minimise disruption and ensure a safe passage for the

convoy, with each Police Force escorting and controlling the load

through their jurisdiction,” said Liam McLoughlin, Senior Projects

Manager. “In addition to the Police, our Teams notified the various

councils through which the convoy travelled who, in turn, provided

road space and engineers to modify sections of the route which

had been highlighted as obstructive in our preliminary planning.

These included extensive street furniture removal, the ramping of

splitter islands and the pruning of foliage to 5.2m high x 6m wide

envelope allowing the 5.4m wide combination to pass safely and


From undertaking the discharging of the Super Grid Transformer

from the vessel at Ellesmere Port through to final delivery at

Cellarhead Substation, the Collett Projects and Heavy Lift Teams

provided complete logistics throughout. Once secured within our

girder bridge trailer, our Teams worked to a strict two day schedule

to deliver the 170 Tonne cargo.

Departing from Ellesmere Port at 8am on Saturday morning and

travelling under Police and private escort, the convoy began the

first 45 mile stage of the project. After navigating the exit from

Ellesmere Port, our Teams performed the first of four ‘end change’

procedures before continuing on towards the outskirts of Chester.

This involved uncoupling each of the two heavy tractors and re-

coupling in a mirrored formation.

After completing this manoeuvre, the convoy continued on its pre-

defined route, navigating the outskirts of Chester before continuing

on towards Northwich and then heading South East towards

Holmes Chapel. Here, our Team undertook the second of the ‘end

change’ procedures, flipping the girder bridge 180 degrees once

again and allowing the 69.6m loaded combination to continue

on, arriving at our Team’s designated overnight parking site at

Barthomley Interchange late Saturday afternoon.

As 8am on Sunday arrived, our Team once again took to the roads

for stage two of the project. With 22 miles to the final delivery site

at Cellarhead Substation, the convoy faced two more ‘end change’

manoeuvres and slip road requirements to navigate the route from

Barthomley, through Stoke-on-Trent and Werrington before safely

arriving at the National Grid Substation.

With a total of 12 hours transport time, our Team arrived

early Sunday afternoon ready to begin final positioning of the

transformer. Still safely secured in the girder bridge, our Team

manoeuvred the transformer to the awaiting supports on the

skid way. Once the transformer was safely positioned on the skid

way, the side beams of the girder bridge were disconnected and

equipped with their support wheels allowing for the front and rear

bogies of the girder bridge to be autonomously driven clear of the

transformer. Now clear of the girder bridge beams, our Heavy Lift

Teambegan the task of hydraulically jacking and skidding the Super

Grid Transformer across the 23m track to its resting plinth.

Ellesmere Port to Cellarhead Substation