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The 60th Anniversary of Calder Hall

On 17 October 2016, it will be 60 years since Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II came to West Cumbria to open Calder Hall, the world’s first commercial nuclear power station.

Here we celebrate the life of the station, we share the memories of people who have worked there and who have grown up in its shadow. We also explore how much every day technology changed between 1956 and 2003 while the station’s original design and engineering endured, as well as a look at how much progress is being made in the clean-up of the iconic facility.

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    Happy Birthday Calder Hall

    When we first started trawling through our archives in preparation for the 60th anniversary of the opening of Calder Hall we expected to find photographs and artefacts that depicted the life of the station’s 47 years of operation. We hoped that some of them would have never been seen or published before. Happily, we achieved […]

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    A walk down memory lane

    For Phil Hallington and David Moore, the construction, opening, operation and decommissioning landmarks in the life of Calder Hall trigger memories of their own lives and relationships with the nuclear industry. Their location on the day that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II came to Sellafield is symbolic of their different experience of living next to […]

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    Memories of Calder Hall…

    STEVE BEWSHER worked in Calder Hall from 1978 to 1992, and then again as part of the decommissioning team in 2004: JOE STALKER echoes Steve’s views: SUSIE POTTER worked on the demolition of the iconic Calder Hall cooling towers in 2007: DAVE MINSHALL was inspired to move to Cumbria and work at Sellafield by Calder Hall’s […]

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    Out for 47

    You only need to look at other technology to see how impressive a feat this is. Take the humble motorcar, for example. In 1956, the new kid on the block was the Austin A35. This feat of engineering was an improved version of the A30, and was so named as it offered 35 horse power, enabling […]

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    Nuclear pioneer

    Lord Christopher Hinton (above, second from the right) has been described as one of the 20th century’s most eminent engineers. His contribution to the UK’s nuclear industry included a leading role in the UK Atomic Energy Authority where he was responsible for the design and construction of a uranium extraction factory at Springfields, the reactors and reprocessing […]

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    Calder Hall: This is your life

    Building Calder Hall Starting in August 1953, Calder Hall was an ambitious design and construction project from an engineering and logistics perspective. Many parts of the station were constructed off site and brought to Sellafield by road; such as the heat exchangers that were transported from Renfrew in Scotland. Their journey included some challenges including […]

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    Five minutes with… Alan Bainbridge

    Alan, tell us what you think makes Calder Hall special? I joined Calder Hall in 1978, in what I considered at the time to be a ’stop-gap’ job. My intent as a youngster was to become a farm manager, clearly that didn’t happen and some 38 years later I’m still here. The happy thing is […]