Express & Star

Watch: From demolition to a new neighbourhood, transformation of Rugeley power station continues

Dramatic Express & Star footage showed the 600ft chimney at Rugeley B power station being blown up almost three years ago - now work is continuing to turn it into thousands of homes.


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The demolition was the end of an era for the famous landmark in the town which once consisted of two power stations, A and B. The actual B power station had been de-commissioned in 2016 – 21 years after the A station - after providing employment for people in the town and beyond since 1970.

It was part of the total decommissioning of the site – the year before the power station’s four iconic cooling towers were blown up as part of the clearance of the site, which had seen six other blow-down demolitions take place in the months before.

The station was the first joint venture between the Central Electricity Generating Board (CEGB) and the National Coal Board (NCB) and took coal directly from the neighbouring Lea Hall Colliery by conveyor belt. Lea Hall Colliery itself closed in 1991, six years after the 1980s miners' strike.

But Rugeley is looking forward to the future now with owners Engie making significant progress in redeveloping and transforming it into a sustainable and innovative neighbourhood.

Outline planning permission for the development of 2,300 new homes, 12 acres of employment space, and an all-through school was granted in April 2021.

This week, Cannock Chase Council leaders visited the site to see how the plans were progressing and it can be seen the site is ready and waiting to be developed.

The site of the former Rugeley Power Station which is set to see a country park, school and homes built on it

So far remediation works to meet regulatory approvals have been achieved via a £45m investment programme as part of the redevelopment plans for the site.

The site of the former Rugeley Power Station

Significant progress has also been made in creating a 26ha Riverside Country Park which will be for wider community use once opened, as well as an agreement to provide 17 acres of land for the development of the school, along with a significant contribution to its construction, road access and infrastructure to service the school.

Engie is also working alongside National Grid to progress the potential construction of an on-site battery storage project to help play a part in the UK’s transition to a zero-carbon economy, as well as supplying clean power to the local community.

A spokesperson said: “We are delighted with the progress of the transformation of the Rugeley Power Station site into a sustainable and innovative neighbourhood.

"We continue to work closely with the stakeholders and the community and hope to have a long-term presence on site through a potential battery storage project.”