Arqiva has begun airlifting materials onto the Bilsdale site in North East England as part of urgent work to build an 80m-high temporary mast.
The temporary structure will return Freeview TV services to more than 90% of households across the area which were affected by last month’s fire at the original Bilsdale mast.
Helicopters are moving around 200 x 750kg concrete blocks to the site that will anchor the temporary mast in place. It will then be used to transport the sections of the mast itself to the moorland site, along with the metal ‘sledges’ which house the concrete blocks.
Once the material is in place, the helicopter will be used to then erect the mast itself by lifting separate sections one at a time to be secured in place by specialist riggers.
“We are working around the clock to restore services to those people who are affected as quickly as possible. Using the helicopter is part of that effort and is the least disruptive way of transporting materials across this remote and sensitive environment,” said Adrian Twyning, Chief of Operations at Arqiva. “Arqiva has experience of using helicopters in this way, and we have successfully completed more than 50 projects on our sites over the years that required a helicopter to lift material or equipment into place.
Weather permitting the work will be completed by October 5th with test transmissions the day before causing interruptions to the temporary stations that have been put in place.