Littlebrook substation, Kent

We are constructing a new high-voltage substation for National Grid to facilitate the flow of 2 GW of renewable and low-carbon energy.

Littlebrook substation is an integral part of the UK electrical system, delivering electricity to 1.5 million homes and businesses across the Southeast of England. Originally built in 1977, the facility was no longer operating in line with National Grid’s low carbon targets.

Balfour Beatty were awarded the contract to design and build a replacement substation. This included the installation of cabling, overhead line connections and switchgear – the circuit board used to control, protect, and isolate electrical equipment. 

A seamless team creates efficiency 

We combined our engineering expertise from across the Balfour Beatty to provide our customer with a seamless team delivering all aspects of works, including:

5229 tonnes

of CO2 emissions saved during construction


of renewable and low-carbon energy

Cleaner gas insulating technology

The existing facility was becoming difficult to maintain due to its reliance on greenhouse gas sulphur hexafluoride (SF6), a gas commonly used in the electrical industry to prevent short circuits and to keep the network safe and reliable.  

The new substation will use the next generation of cleaner gas insulating technology 'g3' developed by National Grid. Just by replacing 1kg of SF6 with 1kg of g3 equals a saving of one car circling the earth four times. 

Giving back to the community  

Keen to give something back to the local community, the team helped a local school create an inviting area for outdoor science, design and technology projects. The previous area was not fit for use with an unstable shed, rotten planters and weeds. 

Using recycled materials, the team created flower beds and erected a fence around the enclosed area and purchased a new shed and stone chippings. Once complete, the school hosted a grand opening for teachers and children which involved some planting of crops as part of their involved learning.  

In addition, the team partnered with Dartford YMCA to donate Easter eggs for local children and a dishwasher for a new community café.