RICHARD LITTLEJOHN: Attack of the killer pylons!

RICHARD LITTLEJOHN: Attack of the killer pylons! Within a few years, ‘this fortress built by Nature for herself’ will have been buried beneath forests of man-made monstrosities

Have you noticed how little self-styled ‘environmentalists’ seem to care about the actual environment?

They spend their time banging back-to-nature jungle drums while simultaneously ripping up the countryside, planting War-Of- The-Worlds windmills in the name of Net Zero.

Our green-and-pleasant is being destroyed by these monstrous turbines, which make Antony Gormley’s Angel of the North, which towers over the A1 at Gateshead, look positively restrained.

(Turbines? Angels of Death, more like, given that they shred to bite-sized pieces anything up to 100,000 innocent birds every year.)

When I was in Scotland earlier in the summer, travelling along the M8 corridor between Glasgow and Edinburgh, I was horrified at the extent to which the proliferation of these ghastly windmills had ruined one of the most beautiful landscapes on Earth.

For the past few years, there has been a moratorium on onshore wind, something Keir Starmer has promised to rip up if, more likely when, Labour wins the next election.

Electricity pylons and wind turbines on the Pennine landscape around Queensbury and Calderdale

Expect, too, a further expansion of offshore wind, which will bring with it still greater wanton desecration of rural and coastal Britain. And coming soon, alongside the forests of wind turbines, hundreds of giant electricity pylons will have to be built to carry the electricity generated at sea.

There’s already a huge groundswell of opposition to plans for a 120-mile long network of pylons stretching across East Anglia, from Dunston in Norfolk to Tilbury in Essex. Only areas of natural beauty, where the lines will run underground, will escape.

In Norfolk, there are valid protests that this will lead to the ‘annihilation of the countryside’.

Quite right, too. (That windmill next to Waitrose at Swaffham is hideous enough already.)

Tomorrow, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt will attempt to buy off opponents by promising anyone who lives near one of these pylons up to £10,000 off their energy bills over the next decade.

That’s 20 quid a week, tops, to have a 120ft tall metal structure carrying live electricity stuck in your back garden.

Ministers are promising they will ‘consult with stakeholders’ before taking a final decision. Where have we heard that before? And when did any ‘consultation’ ever stop them?

Pylons are said to be the cheapest and quickest way to meet Net Zero targets and ensure there’s enough supply to power charging points for electric cars when petrol and diesels are banned. Although Rishi Sunak pushed back the deadline five years, Starmer has pledged to restore it to 2030 when he becomes PM.

The East Anglian scheme is just your starter for ten. Within a few years, ‘this other Eden, demi-paradise, this fortress built by Nature for herself’, will have been buried beneath forests of man-made monstrosities.

READ MORE: Households told they could get up to £10,000 off their bills over a decade if they live near to new pylons or electricity substations

Britons who live closest to new pylons and electricity substations will receive up to £10,000 off their bills over a decade, Jeremy Hunt is set to announce

In pursuit of their deranged Net Zero goals, eco-mentalists and the opportunist politicians who capitulate to their demands are prepared to destroy the very thing they claim to be preserving. 

Rather than embrace new technological solutions, they insist we must go back to the future – pylons, windmills, pushbikes in all weathers.

The first electricity pylons went up in Britain a century ago, even then in the face of strong local opposition. Like today, they were a cheap and efficient way of transmitting energy.

But although many found them ‘beautiful’ – the same being said by admirers of modern wind turbines – they were widely seen as blots on the landscape.

Wherever possible, transmission lines were rerouted and cables buried underground in areas of natural beauty.

Until fairly recently, a restored landscape without pylons and overhead electricity cables was on the horizon – just as phone lines were buried years ago.

In September 2022, the Mail reported that 22 electricity pylons in Thomas Hardy’s Dorset were being pulled down in a ‘world-first’ £116 million scheme, and cables relocated underground.

The manager in charge of the demolition said: ‘It’s great to see the landscape afresh, less cluttered by modern infrastructure.’

You should be so lucky.

One short year later, the lever has been thrown into reverse and pylons are going to start sprouting up again everywhere, marching across the countryside like an invading alien army.

And all this is justified in the name of protecting the environment. These Net Zero nutjobs are like that American Major who, after a fierce battle during the Vietnam war, was quoted as saying: ‘We had to destroy the village in order to save it.’

Ed Sheeran, who played the Albert Hall at the weekend, has put 450 items of clothing – including worn underpants – up for sale on eBay to raise money for charity.

Ed Sheeran, who played the Albert Hall at the weekend, has put 450 items of clothing – including worn underpants – up for sale on eBay to raise money for charity

How times change. Screaming women used to throw their knickers at Tom Jones. Sheeran is flogging his pants to the audience.

Now that is unusual. I can’t see Tom doing the same.

Y-, Y-, Y-fronts, Delilah!

Pro-Hamas head-bangers allege the Israel Defence Force is lying about finding a command and control centre under Gaza’s main hospital. The IDF ‘only’ uncovered guns, rockets and ammunition. Given that Hamas travels light, needs little more than a laptop and makes missile launchers out of drainpipes, what were they expected to find? A White House-style situation room, complete with a bank of screens and state-of-the-art satellite communications? 

Ever since she first came to my attention, I’ve been calling Suella Braverman Sue Ellen, after Linda Gray’s character in Dallas.

Now Braverman, in an interview with The Mail on Sunday’s Glen Owen, has confirmed her real name is Sue-Ellen, with a hyphen, because her mum was a big Dallas fan.

Sometimes, even I can’t make it up.

Let me in – I’m British

Every time I travel back through Heathrow, I become increasingly irritated at having to queue at immigration behind hundreds of EU citizens.

Despite Brexit, as the BBC would say, there’s no ‘fast-track’ for UK passport holders, which should have been an early benefit of ‘taking back control’.

And then there’s the e-gates system, which never seems to work.

Nine times out of ten, I manage to get a ‘seek assistance’ message after several attempts, like those infuriating self-service machines in supermarkets.

Unexpected passenger in baggage area.

Every time I travel back through Heathrow, I become increasingly irritated at having to queue at immigration behind hundreds of EU citizens (Stock Image) 

The same thing happened on Saturday on returning from the U.S. The good news is that we were shown into a separate, fast-moving queue to have our passports inspected manually.

At the desk we were greeted by a charming Border Force officer, a chap of a certain age, who spoke English, asked where we’d come from, hoped we’d had a good time and waved us through with a cheery ‘welcome home’. Pleasure doing business with you, guv.

Which gave me an idea. Some supermarkets are already ripping out their self-scanners and reinstating checkout staff, often sixty-somethings looking for a job post-retirement. Why can’t Border Force do something similar?

If they must keep the e-gates, leave them there for the EU mob to tackle. Then hire a few more helpful, grown-up immigration officers – UK passport holders, exclusive for the use of.

You never know, it might catch on.

Never mind working from home, it’s been revealed that civil servants at the Net Zero department can work from the beach, sinking pina coladas. And, presumably, to hell with their carbon footprint on the flights there and back.

Elsewhere, the WFH cult is still in full swing, with other Government departments only insisting staff turn up three days a week and HMRC offices maxing out at 55 per cent attendance.

I guess it doesn’t matter whether Jeremy Hunt raises or lowers taxes tomorrow. Sounds like there’s unlikely to be anyone at HMRC to collect them.

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