The first station was built in 1893, with an original capacity of 225 kW. It eventually closed in 1959. A new 'B' station was planned before World War II, opening in 1948. The Thames was used both for coal supply and ash removal, and as a source of cooling water. The new station was the first to be opened following nationalisation of the power industry, with the official opening by King George VI, the first station to receive such an honour since Barking in 1924.
Generation ceased on 27 October 1980 with a generating capacity of 117 megawatts. The station was eventually demolished, despite calls for preservation as a power museum. The two 250-foot chimneys were demolished in 1994.