Woolwich Power Station

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Woolwich Power Station
Woolwich power station 1973.jpg
Woolwich Power Station from the ferry in 1973
Woolwich Power Station is located in Greater London
Woolwich Power Station
Location of Woolwich Power Station in Greater London
Country England
Location Greenwich, London
Coordinates 51°29′40″N 0°03′57″E / 51.494400°N 0.065700°E / 51.494400; 0.065700Coordinates: 51°29′40″N 0°03′57″E / 51.494400°N 0.065700°E / 51.494400; 0.065700
Commission date 1893
Decommission date 1978
Operator(s) Central Electricity Generating Board
Thermal power station
Primary fuel Coal-fired
Power generation
Nameplate capacity 57 MW
grid reference TQ434792

Woolwich Power Station was a coal-fired power station on the south bank of the Thames at Woolwich.

The first station was opened at the site in 1893 by the Woolwich District Electric Lighting Company adapted from boat repair shops,[1] and subsequently taken over by the Metropolitan Borough of Woolwich. During later construction work in 1912 the timbers of a Tudor warship believed to be Henry VII's 1488 ship Sovereign were uncovered on the site.[2]

The station was redeveloped in the 1920s and again in the 1940s and 1950s, ultimately having three huge brick chimneys. It occupied a site of just over seven and a half acres.

The coal used by the station was usually shipped from the Yorkshire and Northumberland areas and offloaded by crane onto a deep trough conveyor. At its peak the station was burning over 1000 tons of coal a day.[3]

The station closed on 30 October 1978 with a generating capacity of 57 megawatts.[4] One chimney was demolished by hand in 1978, and the remaining two by explosives in 1979. The site of the main power station building is now occupied by the Waterfront Leisure Centre car park; part of the coaling jetty remains.


  1. ^ Transport for London, Thames Gateway Bridge, Appendix 12G. Gazetteer of known archaeology within 2 km study area,[1]
  2. ^ Angus Konstam, Tony Bryan Illustrated by Tony Bryan, Tudor Warships (1): Henry VIII's Navy, Osprey Publishing, 2008, ISBN 1-84603-251-2
  3. ^ Chris Mansfield, Woolwich Power Station. A brief history
  4. ^ Mr. Redmond (16 January 1984). "Coal-fired Power Stations". Hansard. Retrieved 1 September 2009.