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Report - - Ince B Power Station Control Room and Ancillary Buildings, Ince & Elton, Chesire, Feburary 2019 | Industrial Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Ince B Power Station Control Room and Ancillary Buildings, Ince & Elton, Chesire, Feburary 2019



slayaaaa

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#1
Ince B Power Station


Another hidden piece of CEGB history tucked away in some modern industry. Unfortunately, don´t expect any kind of Tilbury A or Winnington B with the control room and what´s left, it´s a lot more modern and a lot more empty, but I definitely enjoyed a lengthy wander around the remaining buildings. I'm sure I´m not the only one that can appreciate late 50s and 60s features in an industrial setting.

History


First, let me redirect you to this site: http://incebps.org.uk/Intro Pages/History.htm

An incredible site with some amazing information and great pictures. Also included are some great scans of the plant details on Ince B and you can find those under the plant details page. I hope to contact the owner of the site in the future as this report slowly goes into public and see if my photos can be of any use. I´ll be using mostly information from this website and a CEGB manual for the power station.



"Ince B, an oil-fired power station with two 500MW generating sets, is situated on land previously used for agricultural grazing near the village of Elton. The station lies on the southern side of the Mersey and Manchester Ship Canal, being partly in the borough of Ellesmere Port and partly in the Rural District of Chester. The site on which the station is built is approximately 50 hectares (125 Acres) and adjoins the UKF Fertiliser´s plant to the northeast. A natural slope from southwest to the northeast was leveled by cut and fill to a level of +7.9 Ordnance Datum (OD) which is taken as the Site Datum."



Ince B was part of a dash for oil in the 1960s, similar to the dash for gas in the '90s and its economic case envisaged base load running.

The C.E.G.B. built a number of large oil-fired installations with close proximity to refineries, like Fawley, Pembroke, Grain, and Littlebrook D. Some coal stations were converted including Ince A. The Scottish board was also following the same policy. During the 1960s, due to the rapid growth in the demand for petroleum products, the oil industry found itself with an abundance of heavy oil residues. This material was very suitable as a cheap, high calorific fuel for electricity generation. So oil became a significant part of a multiple fuel philosophy for our industry. Fuel is, of course, a major part of electricity production costs.

Whilst Ince B was justified at the time by the fuel policy, it was not the preferred site by the C.E.G.B. Political influence was applied to build it in the North West, leading perhaps to the job myth. But the government certainly did not have the power or the intent to compel us to build power stations we did not think we needed.

By the early '70s, things began to go wrong for oil generation. The war in the Middle East and the emergence of a stronger organisation of the OPEC countries pushed up the price of crude oil dramatically and precipitated a world economic slump. Oil is priced in dollars so even our own North Sea developments were not immune to this inflation. New refinery cracking technology was developed which enabled better distillation of light fractions from crude oil and led to less interest in selling residuals. Heavy political pressure from environmental groups and internationally, began to cause problems because of the sulfur content of the oil and the alleged damage from acid rain. Ince B was in a position of being the least able to resist these pressures for several reasons.

The construction time was very extended. The transmission system was not adequate to handle the flow from the North, to the high demand area of the South East, after the commissioning of over three thousand megawatts of nuclear capacity. The Board decided to enter into long term fixed price coal contracts with the National Coal Board in return for a guaranteed usage. This limited the amount of oil required to meet demand, and Ince was last in the chain to be offered load. The Parsons' 500MW electrical rotors were found to have a generic fault requiring lengthy returns to the manufacturer's works. The two national spares were soon absorbed. Since coal was now the preferred fuel, Ratcliffe was given priority over Ince when the failures became overwhelming.


5, 6, 7, 8, 11 & 12 all still remain


Photos


As I said before, don´t expect a Tilbury A, but for me, this place really showcased some amazing features and whilst it is in some respects completely condemned, it has some very dated features in relatively good condition. The site is now owned by Encirc glass, presumably, they were previously Quinn glass and used a small section of the admin, engineering, locker rooms and canteen of the old power station as their contractor's offices. There is evidence of the building´s use until 2006 in some parts, but 2009 in the locker rooms. The Workshops and Stores (11 in the diagram a the beginning of the report) is still used as a storage area and we got quite a surprise when we walked in on a very live distribution center.


Control Block external

I´ll put you all out of your misery and begin with the empty control room on the 3rd floor.


The original ceiling above and the foundations of the units below


As it should have looked, taken from the site referenced above


These really hadn´t seen someone through them in a very long time


Stripped and ruined, carpeted with the remanence of a lot of Pigeons


Looking out from the 3rd floor, the steel cladding defining the old power stations from the modern Encirc glass factory from the right


As expected, 60s Gent time master system


Great textured wallpaper and ceiling tiles


Hard to see here, but these windows were great, amazing and very dated


More great features including extraction and blinds


Old toilets


Cublicles and accompanying paneling




Wallpaper in one of the rooms to the West




Similar rooms that showcase that 1960s architecture, Pink, Green, White




More coridoors
 

slayaaaa

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#2

At this point we went to explore the ground, 1st, and 2nd floors but these mainly consisted of substations and cabling ducts that had been completely stripped, I wasn´t going to sit there with a very dim torch attempting to light paint a very dark and large room that had only breeze block walls as any kind of feature.


An example of a 60s fire system and basic floor plan of the control building


Less evidence of pigeon here




This corridor linked the control building to admin


As you can see, it was pretty dilapidated


Switch panel before we move on to the admin




Welcome to Ince! Amazing they still had this whilst the offices were in use for Quinn


Ceiling above the stairs


Admin stairs


The rooms didn't differ much from this style but seemed a lot more modern

We´ll move straight on to the canteen for now as these admin offices were full of glass samples and Quinn records that were quite dull in contrast the Powergen relics


Dining area

]



Kitchen






Moving on to function and social area

This area was a mix of rot, cool ceilings, and very white tiles






The old workers entrance was fairly unremarkable but had some cool features




Here we found some equipment for archiving and filing






Workshops and Stores



I enjoyed a look around and especially looking sole of these bits that clearly hadn´t seen anyone in there for a while. Personally, it paid off but see what you think, hope you enjoyed.
 

dweeb

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
#4
Bad luck there, we had a similar "uugh" moment at star city when you reach the control room and find an empty room.

Good efforts though!