In 2012, Npower announced the famous Didcot A tower was to be demolished. Now, Npower has announced the demolition, which is being carried out by specialist firm Coleman and Company, is nearly a third of the way complete. So far, three of the cooling towers have been demolished and the Didcot A coal yard has also been destroyed.
The 47 hectare site that was left behind following the demolition of the coal yard has now been sold to developers Clowes Development Limited and a consultation process is now underway to determine what will become of the land.
In addition, Turbine Hall has also been demolished and recovery of the remaining scrap is still continuing. Thus far, 20,000 tonnes of scrap materials have been collected and 36,000 tonnes of concrete from the site has been recycled; many of the tanks that were used to fuel the Didcot A tower have been demolished and the external ductwork has been taken down.
Work will continue on the site well into 2016. The main stations buildings are scheduled for demolition in the summer of 2015 and the north cooling towers and chimney are likely to be demolished the following year. It is predicted the demolition of the site will be completed by September 2016.
The Didcot A power station closed in 2013 after being in use for more than four decades. Speaking at the time, a spokesperson for Npower said the decision to shut down the power station was “driven by government policy” and the need to replace less energy efficient means of power generation with low carbon alternatives.
The first towers were felled in July 2014; it took less than ten seconds to demolish them. The demolition of the towers was described as a sad day and the end of an era for Npower.
Speaking at the time, Alan Robinson Chief Commercial Officer for Npower, said:
“In anticipation of the closure of older coal-fired power stations, such as Didcot A, RWE has invested strongly in modern gas-fired stations. Didcot A has played a vital role in ensuring security of supply for the UK for over 40 years. Our new gas stations are continuing where Didcot A left off by providing reliable, low-cost electricity.”
“RWE has invested more than £6bn in the UK in new renewable technologies and state-of-the-art gas-fired power stations, which will continue to help keep the lights on whilst dramatically reducing environmental emissions”.