Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 12°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs have arrived. See the latest

Pigs Gone Wild

news here.

Sizewell A: Transportation of spent fuel rods to Sellafield has slowed

12:00 10 December 2012

Sizewell A power station

Sizewell A power station

Archant

THE flow of highly radioactive spent fuel rods from the redundant Sizewell A nuclear power station to the Sellafield reprocessing works in Cumbria has slowed to a trickle as the Suffolk plant has slipped down the priority list.

However, officials are hopeful that regular transports will resume at the end of March and that the target date for total de-fuelling – the autumn of 2014 – will still be met.

Sizewell A ceased electricity generation at the end of 2006 after a 40-year operational lifetime and is being decommissioned, a process which will continue for decades.

Thousands of fuel rods from the twin gas-cooled reactors are gradually being taken by rail to Sellafield for reprocessing via the East Suffolk line and Stratford on the outskirts of London.

Regular transports were taking place up until the start of the Olympic Games when the journeys were suspended - because of the need to reduce rail congestion in the Stratford area, not because of any terrorist threat, officials maintained.

A resumption was delayed because of problems at Sellafield, now largely resolved.

But few transports have since taken place and the Sizewell Stakeholder Group (SSG) was recently told that a resumption of the regular journeys is now on hold.

Clive Pullen, Sizewell A plant manager, said priority was now being given to the de-fuelling in Scotland of the Chapelcross power station, originally built to provide weapons-grade plutonium for the Ministry of Defence as well as to pump electricity into the national grid.

“De-fuelling has not been going as well as we would wish. We’ve got a small allowance at the moment but we’ve been assured that Sizewell A will be the next priority,” Mr Pullen said.

It would take another 177 rail transports to complete the de-fuelling, he added.

Marianne Fellowes, SSG chair, said the lack of transports was proving a frustration for Sizewell A staff geared up for the de-fuelling process.

The SSG – as well as the management at Sizewell A - would be pressing for an early re-start date, she said.

0 comments

Two vehicles have collided in Wickhambrook.

A woman has sustained a minor head injury during a two-vehicle crash in west Suffolk tonight.

Pigs Gone Wild sculptures being delivered to the streets of Ipswich

This week Suffolk has seen pigs pop up around town, James May officially unveil a new motorcycle museum and ITFC begin their pre-season training. To catch up on all the latest, watch this week’s news in video.

Centennial commemoration of the start of the battle of the Somme at Long Melford War Memorial at Holy Trinity Church.

The great-nephew of a Long Melford soldier who fought at the Battle of the Somme described the “humbling” experience of blowing on the same whistle his ancestor used to send men over the top.

More funding is needed to help people suffering with mental ill health, Labour says

Labour has joined calls demanding more money be made available for mental health services in Suffolk, warning that reported cuts of £200,000 will have “severe consequences” for sufferers in the county.

Rudimental were at Thetford last night

Two years ago Rudimental were performing on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury when it was powered down because an electrically charged storm was exploding overhead.

Ready for the start: The cars lined up in front of a large crowd ahead of the National Hot Rod World Championship race at the 44th Annual SpedeWeekend at Foxhall Stadium, Ipswich, Suffolk, UK on 28 June 2015. Picture: Steve Waller

The draw of high action, high speed motorsport will be bringing fans of oval motorsport to Foxhall Stadium this weekend for the 45th annual SpedeWeekend.

Dave Lock decompressing on the line

Scuba divers searching the first British warship to sink in the First World War have made a “remarkable” discovery.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24