|In the last issue there were accusations of scaremongering with an illustration that appeared in the October edition of Mersea Life showing steam belching from cooling towers and the scale of the towers being out of proportion to the existing power station. I think the proportions are right and any artist would put it down to perspective. Another local publication had a illustration showing black smoke belching from the cooling towers, now that IS scaremongering. I remember the 'Scaremongering' that was bandied about leading up to the building of the first power station at Bradwell. The water in the Blackwater Estuary would be heated to such an extent by the cooling water being discharged that we would be able to swim in it all year round and the marine life would change completely. As it happened, during the first winter of operation the river froze solid, except for an area around the discharge pipes and a helicopter had to be bought in to drop supplies to the watchmen on the laid up ships. I certainly have no wish to see a new Chinese nuclear power station over the river at Bradwell. If there is to be one I'd rather it be British - but I know that's not possible.
Renewables are the best option but what happens when the wind doesn't blow and the sun doesn't shine? Hopefully new ways and improvements will be developed to store electricity. Looking back, Bradwell 'A' generated clean electricity as far as I'm aware and had a good safety record. It provided much needed jobs for many people from Mersea and the surrounding area.
The frozen River Blackwater February 1963
Article published in Mersea Life December 2020
The Boilers for Bradwell Power Station were built at Thornaby on the River Tees in the North East. They were were floated and towed down the North Sea. At Bradwell a concrete slipway had been built into the water so the boilers could be floated onto a trailer and then towed to the power station.
1959 photographs from Mersea man Bill Read, who worked at Bradwell during its construction. He lived over there during the week, aboard the smack IRIS.