Pop Up Power

Pop Up Power: Pop up, in-ground or bollard power units? Which one is best?

  • 23 Feb 2023

Incorporating power distribution units into an outdoor space is an excellent way to increase its versatility and leverage value. But what’s the best way to achieve this? Pop Up Power Supplies offers a range of power distribution units through three ranges…

To decide which type would be most suitable for your application, it is important to understand how they differ to maximise the potential usage and long term benefit.

But firstly, why do you need a power supply in an outdoor space? The key advantage is that it can add new functionality and purpose to a commercial or public space such as a lawned area, a courtyard, vehicle yard, wide footpath or a garden. This can unlock its potential in many different ways.

For example, if you have an industrial site with a large, mostly unused vehicle yard, installing power distribution units can enable the space to be used to provide additional production or storage capacity as an electricity supply for lighting, machinery, etc. will be available. If you have a paved courtyard outside your school building, adding power here could facilitate outdoor lessons when the weather permits.

So how do the three range from Pop Up Power Supplies stack up?

Firstly, there are some universal benefits across all three. They are all manufactured to order so can be configured to suit the exact requirements of the site. That could be to specify a certain number of power sockets or adding other services such as a water supply or telecoms line.

All the units supplied by Pop Up Power Supplies are manufactured to the highest standards using high quality materials including stainless steel to provide a robust solution over a long service life.

Pop Up Power

Pop up retractable power units

Sometimes referred to as a telescopic in-ground power unit, these are designed to be hidden in the ground when not in use and easy to raise from the ground to connect up when required. The key benefit is that they can be made readily available by authorised users for temporary events and additional facilities, such as food and drink kiosks, market stalls and entertainment stages, without the power unit becoming a permanent feature on the site or landscape. 

This makes them particularly suitable for sensitive locations, including listed buildings and architecturally important sites, where an outdoor space can be enhanced with power connectivity without having effecting its aesthetics. 

In-ground power distribution units

Like pop up units, in ground power distribution units are installed permanently in the ground and accessed by authorised users whenever needed. In ground units feature a flip-lid for access and do not raise up telescopically.

Whenever connection to a power source is required, the lid is unlocked and flipped open to allow leads to be plugged in. Once the leads are securely connected, the lid can then be locked down again whilst the event or equipment connected is running. As a result, in ground units are ideal for applications where you want continuous unattended use, such as for an all-day food and drink festival open to members of the public.

Power bollards

Also referred to as utility bollards, these are designed to be a permanent piece of street furniture, which becomes a power distribution unit by unlocking the cover to access power sockets. They are ideal for sites which are unsuitable for pop up or in-ground power units, such as where it is not possible or complicated to excavate to the required depth. 

Power bollards can be supplied in five different designs and can be powder coated to any RAL colour. This means they can become a design feature of an outdoor site, rather than being hidden all or some of the time as with the other two options.


The type of unit you choose depends very much on the site conditions and whether you are looking for the power unit to be discreet or a stand-out feature. If you have a site that allows for excavation to a reasonable depth, you may prefer the ‘hidden in plain sight’ advantage of an in-ground or pop up power unit. However, other services such as utility cables or pipes and building foundations may make their installation complicated.

Where you are looking to incorporate a power distribution unit as part of a site with other street furniture elements, such as seating, litter bins and planters, a power bollard could be the obvious choice. They may be easier to install too given that there is no need for the excavation that is needed for pop up or in-ground units.

To discuss the features and benefits of all three ranges, contact Pop Up Power Supplies on 020 8227 0208 or visit www.popuppower.co.uk.

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