Work is set to begin on dismantling an unused gasholder in St Helens.
The site, on Navigation Road, will be cleared as part of National Grid’s on-going nationwide gasholder dismantling programme.
Gasholders are no longer required due to investments made to improve the national network, meaning gas can be stored in the pipe system underground.
Work is expected to be complete by the autumn.
The Coleman Group, specialist contractors appointed by National Grid, will first remove and treat any water from the gasholder, before removing the sludge and any other debris from inside. The holder will then be dismantled.
When removing the sludge, an unpleasant smell, similar to diesel, is sometimes noticed.
This smell is not harmful to people who live in the surrounding community or the environment. National Grid will do everything they can to make sure it does not become an issue, including using odour suppressants.
National Grid’s gas safety guidance remains unchanged by the work. If anyone thinks they can smell gas they should contact the freephone gas emergency number 0800 111 999.
All reports will be investigated by gas engineers to check if there is a gas escape.
The site will remain securely fenced at all times with full CCTV coverage. The work will be strictly controlled to minimise any potential disturbance for people who live and work close by.
Hannah White, land regeneration manager for National Grid, said: “We will remove the gasholder as safely, quickly and efficiently as possible to minimise the impact on the local community and the environment.
“We have written to people who live and work in the local area to explain what we will be doing. If anyone has any questions about the project they can contact our community relations team on 0800 8199 071.”