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The power of theatre – new play planned on the history of Fawley Power Station

Fawley power station before demolition work
Fawley power station before demolition work

THE history of Fawley Power Station is to be explored in a new play – with a theatre calling for contributions from anyone who worked there.

Writer David Lane is developing a piece in partnership with Ringwood’s Forest Forge Theatre, which has received funding for the project from Arts Council England.

Sharon Lawless, CEO of the theatre, has appealed for anyone who worked there or has memories of it to get in touch with their stories, photos or films.

“Please do spread the word and share with those you think may be interested, or tell us if you think there is an individual or a group we should speak to,” she said.

“Please email sharon@forestforgetheatre.co.uk with your stories or for more information.”

Commissioned in 1971, the 2,000 megawatt power station originally used heavy fuel oil from the nearby Esso refinery and featured a turbine hall, 650ft chimney and a circular control room.

It was built on reclaimed marshland formerly part of The Cadland Estate, which surrounds the site, and run by RWE npower.

But it shut in 2013 after falling foul of environmental regulations and an inability to meet emissions targets without significant investment.

Sixty people worked at the station but RWE npower, which also shut its coal-fired Didcot A power station in Oxfordshire, redeployed some of them elsewhere in the firm and eventually the closure cost around 40 people their jobs.

In October 2015, an investment manager working on behalf of London-based Long Harbour successfully negotiated a deal to buy it.

It is now set to be redeveloped with 1,500 homes as part of the major Fawley Waterside scheme approved by New Forest District Council.

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