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Hinkley TBMs officially named after arrival on site

EDF celebrated delivery on site of the three tunnel boring machines (TBMs) that will drive the water intake and outfall tunnels at the Hinkley Point C nuclear project with a special naming ceremony.

EDF invited 215 primary schools from across Somerset to suggest names for the three 1,500t Herrenknecht TBMs and 70 children from the schools that chose the winning names attended the naming ceremony.

The TBMS have been christened as Mary – after Lyme Regis fossil hunter Mary Anning, Emmeline – after local suffragist Emmeline Pethick Lawrence, and Beatrice – after Beatrice Shilling, who was also known as Tilly, who worked as an engineer in the development of the Spitfire during World War Two.

The three TBMs will be used by Balfour Beatty to excavate two 3.5km cooling water intake tunnels and a 1.8km outfall tunnel in the Bristol Channel. Balfour Beatty was appointed to undertake the 7m diameter tunnels in August 2017 after Costain had previously been named as the preferred bidder in 2013.

The drilling equipment that will be used to dig other sections of the water outlet structure was also named during the ceremony and was christened Sarah Guppy after a design engineer who was believed to have played a lead role in the design of the Clifton Suspension Bridge.

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