West Burton power stations

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West Burton Power Stations
View from Upper Ings Lane - geograph.org.uk - 285251.jpg
West Burton Power Station
Viewed from the south in November 2006
West Burton power stations is located in Nottinghamshire
West Burton power stations
Location of West Burton Power Stations
Country England
Location West Burton, Nottinghamshire
Coordinates 53°21′54″N 0°49′10″W / 53.365°N 0.8194°W / 53.365; -0.8194Coordinates: 53°21′54″N 0°49′10″W / 53.365°N 0.8194°W / 53.365; -0.8194
Status Operational
Construction began 1958 (A station)
2006 (B station)
Commission date 1968
Construction cost £600 million (Gas)
Owner(s) EDF Energy
Operator(s) Central Electricity Generating Board
National Power
Eastern Group
TXU Energy
London Power Company
Power generation
Primary fuel Coal
Secondary fuel Gas
Nameplate capacity 2,000 MW (installed)
3,270 MW (2013 on) (max. planned)
grid reference SK791855

The West Burton power stations are a pair of power stations on the River Trent near Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England, located between Bole to the north and Sturton le Steeple to the south. One is a coal-fired power station, which was commissioned in 1968, and the second is a combined cycle gas turbine power station, commissioned in 2011. Both stations are owned and operated by EDF Energy.

The site is the furthest north of series of power stations in the Trent valley, being 3.5 miles (5.6 km) downstream of the Cottam power stations. The Sheffield to Lincoln Line supplies the station with coal.


It is built on the site of the deserted medieval village of West Burton.[1] The station was commissioned between 1967 and 1968.[2] It was originally operated by the CEGB and then run by National Power after privatisation, until April 1996 when it was bought by the Eastern Group which became TXU Europe. In November 2001 when the price of electricity was low and TXU Europe had severe financial problems, it was bought by the London Power Company for £366 million.[citation needed] The station is now run by EDF Energy.[2]

In June 2000, work began on the fitting of flue-gas desulfurization (FGD) equipment at the station. FLS Miljo installed the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries wet limestone systems, while Arup Energy and Mowlem took up a design–build partnership to undertake the civil works and construction of infrastructure. The work was completed in October 2003, and had a total cost of £100 million.[2]

Separated over-fire air (SOFA) burners were installed on all four of the station's units in 2007 to meet European Union nitrogen oxide emission legislation. The burners were installed by GE Energy.[2]

The station also has a Discovery Centre to educate local school children. It has the oldest mound of FGD gypsum in the UK, part of an experiment set up by CEGB scientists in 1988.


Work began on site in 1958 by the Northern Project Group a department within the CEGB the construction was overseen by resident engineer Douglas Derbyshire who had recently completed the build of the nearby High Marnham Power Station.

Shah of Iran at West Burton

The consulting engineers for the project were Merz & McLellan and the main building architects being Architects Design Group (Gelsthorpe & Savidge). The main contractor on site was Alfred McAlpine with steelwork designed by the Cleveland Bridge & Engineering Company.

The station was the first 2000MW to be constructed in the United Kingdom and subsequently attracted visitors from around the world including Mohammad Reza Pahlavi the Shah of Iran who was escorted around the site by Robert Laycock the Lord Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire.


The power station provides electricity for around two million people, and is situated on a 410-acre (1.7 km2) site. Coal for the power station, like Cottam, came from the Welbeck colliery at Meden Vale until it closed in May 2010. The station's other supplier, Thoresby colliery, is expected to last longer. The station connects to the National Grid, like most similar sized coal power stations, via a transformer and substation at 400 kV. The chimneys of West Burton Power Station are 200 metres (660 ft) tall.

The station generates electricity using four 500 megawatt English Electric turbo generators. These are provided with steam by International Combustion boilers fitted with a Melesco primary & secondary superheater & reheater, fueled by bituminous coal.[2]

The station also has two open-cycle 20 MW capacity Rolls-Royce Avon RA29 Stage 6A (1533-51) gas turbine generators (2 per set).

Combined cycle gas turbine power station[edit]

A £600 million 1,270 MWe CCGT power station, which runs on natural gas, was built next to the coal-fired station.[3] Construction by the Kier Group started in January 2008. It was built on land originally allocated for a proposed 1,800 MW West Burton 'B' coal power station that was to have been built in the 1980s. Privatisation of the electricity industry in 1990 cancelled this scheme. The power station commissioned in 2013, and supplies electricity to around 1.5 million homes. A new 12 mi (19 km) gas pipeline was built to link to the National Gas Transmission System at Grayingham in Lincolnshire. Around 1,000 people were involved in the construction. The plant consists of three 430 MW gas turbines each with a heat recovery steam generator.[4][5]

Activists from the No Dash For Gas group protesting against the building of the gas plant pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated trespass in February 2013.[6] EDF discontinued a civil lawsuit against them in March 2013.[7][8]


  1. ^ West Burton Deserted Village: [1], report by Nottinghamshire Community Archaeology, retrieved 28 December 2011
  2. ^ a b c d e "Coal-Fired Power Plants in East England & the Midlands". www.industcards.com. 12 August 2010. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  3. ^ http://www.utilityweek.co.uk/news/edf-energy-opens-west-burton-gas-fired-power-station/999832#.U5gTQfldWUk
  4. ^ "West Burton Combined Cycle Gas Turbine Station". EDF Energy. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  5. ^ "Power - Projects: West Burton, Nottinghamshire". Kier Construction. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  6. ^ Richard Alleyne (21 February 2013). "Gas power station activists being sued by owners of plant for £5m". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  7. ^ James Ball (13 March 2013). "EDF drops lawsuit against environmental activists after backlash". Guardian. Retrieved 27 October 2014. 
  8. ^ "EDF drops lawsuit against West Burton protestors". Gainsborough Standard. 21 March 2013. Retrieved 27 October 2014. 

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