The second mast at Emley Moor is due to be removed this autumn after technical work on the main mast was finally finished two years behind schedule.

The second mast was built in the spring of 2018 and was due to be removed in 2021 but work at the very top of the main concrete mast has taken longer than expected.

The temporary mast was needed so engineers could update the antenna on the tower as part of a nationwide project to clear some frequencies, transferring them from TV use to mobile data. A number of antennae have been replaced and the ones at the very top have been removed.

The tower’s owner, global communications giant Arqiva, has now switched all its broadcasting back to the main tower.

An Arqiva spokesman said: “Following a successful switchover, work will begin to remove the broadcasting equipment from the temporary mast and then to remove the structure itself. Removal is anticipated to begin in the autumn.”

Images of Emley Moor TV mast by Huddersfield Hub photographer SEAN DOYLE

The temporary mast was a major engineering feat with extensive groundwork needed before the mast could even be built using a giant crane and then a helicopter for the final pieces.

The temporary mast is 317m (1,040ft) tall, slightly smaller than the existing tower, and is supported by dozens of steel cables.

The work on the main mast has lowered its height from 1,084ft to 1,046ft but it still retains its place as the tallest freestanding structure in the UK.

An Arqiva spokesman said in 2018: “Much of the work can only be carried out in the summer months and the site should be cleared and reinstated by the end of 2021.

“The work needed is part of an Ofcom project to clear the top part of the spectrum used for TV signals (in the 700mhz range) for other uses.

“The existing tower provides digital TV and radio to over 1.9m households (around 4.5m people). It also carries other telecommunications services, including mobile phone signal.

“The changes that need to be made are to the TV broadcast antennas so these services need to be transferred over to the temporary mast before work can commence on the antennas on the existing tower.”

The mast was built to replace a previous one brought down by high winds and ice in March 1969.

Emley Moor Tower factfile

It was built in 1971.

It’s 330m tall – the Eiffel Tower is 324m. The Shard in London is 306m and Blackpool Tower is 158m.

It used 7,000 cubic metres of concrete when it was constructed.

It weighs 11,200 tonnes.

A ladder runs the entire height and has 865 rungs.

It has two lifts and each takes seven minutes to reach the top.

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR ( specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting.