Hams Hall Power Station

Hams Hall Power Station refers to a series of three, now demolished coal-fired power stations, situated in Warwickshire in the West Midlands of England, 9 miles (14 km) from Birmingham.

History
Hams Hall A

Following the death of Lord Norton in 1905, his estate was put up for sale in 1911. Part of the house was rebuilt near Cirencester, but the rest was demolished in 1920. Hams Hall Power Station was constructed on the site in 1928. It opened in 1929 with a generating capacity of 90,000 kilowatts (kW). This was increased to 240,000 kW. The station burned approximately 774,000 tonnes of coal a year. At the time it was one of the largest power stations in Europe.

The station was also the first power station in the United Kingdom to burn pulverised coal, rather than lumps of coal. It was also used as a prototype site for the installation of gas turbines in coal-fired plants. Water for the station was cooled by six reinforced concrete hyperbolic cooling towers. At the time, these were the largest cooling towers ever built. The station had two 350 feet (110 m) tall chimneys.

The station's closure was announced in 1975, following a fall in electricity consumption. By the time of its closure its generating capacity had fallen to 151 MW. The station's chimneys and cooling towers were demolished in 1978.

Hams Hall B

The second station on the site, Hams Hall B Power Station, was planned in 1937. It began generating electricity in 1942. The station was expanded between 1946 and 1949. The station had a generating capacity of 160,500 kW. Its water was cooled by four cooling towers. The station used Parsons turbo-alternators.

In December 1945 there was complaint about pollution from the station. This was caused by a corroded metal connection between the boilers and the chimneys. The pollution continued until 1948, when the connection was eventually replaced.

The station closed on 26 October 1981 after 39 years of operation. It had a generating capacity of 306 MW at the time of its closure. Its four cooling towers were demolished in November 1985, with chimney number 2 going down in September 1988.

Hams Hall C

The third, final station to be constructed on the site was Hams Hall C Power Station, built in the 1950s and commissioned between 1956 and 1958. The station's water was cooled by three 350 feet (110 m) high natural draft cooling towers. It generated 357 MW of electricity using six generating sets.

In 1968, the station was under consideration to be converted to fueled by natural gas, after a successful experimental trial of the fuel in one of the station's boilers earlier in the year. In October 1968 permission for the conversion was refused due to difficulties in the coal industry. Despite this, talk of conversion started again in 1970, and following discussion with the National Coal Board and the National Union of Mineworkers, permission was granted for the station to co-fire coal and natural gas.

Following privatisation in 1990, the station was operated by Powergen. The C station closed in 1992. Its two chimneys and three cooling towers were demolished on 15 December 1993, under darkness.

Proposed D station

In 1968 the site was considered for a fourth power station. The CEGB made routine investigtions into the feasibility of a D station, but nothing was ever built.

Present

An industrial estate was constructed on the site. Alfred McAlpine were involved in the construction work of the new estate. The site is still owned by E.ON, the current form of PowerGen, and known as Hams Hall Distribution Park.