A FIRST look at equipment set to be use in the demolition of part of Sellafield’s skyline has been revealed.

The Pile 1 chimney has been an iconic feature of the Cumbrian coastline for decades but it is set to be brought down in the near future as the structure is decommissioned.

But before the demolition can take place at Sellafield site, a mock chimney, subject to planning approval from Copeland Council, will be constructed at Leconfield Industrial Estate.

A collaboration of Cumbrian firms will construct the replica at the industrial estate in Cleator Moor before testing a one-of-a-kind hydraulic platform on the structure to prove that the method would work.

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The trial is being facilitated by engineering firm Forth at the request of ADAPT.  Forth has bases across Cumbria including the proposed trial site at Leconfield.

Once trialling of the equipment is complete at Leconfield, the Hydraulic SPIDA machine will be used in the real demolition of the Pile 1 chimney at Sellafield.

The equipment has been designed by ADAPT, a joint venture consisting of companies Doosan Babcock, Atkins and Orano.

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Graham Cartwright, the projects director at Forth, said: “What we are hoping to achieve with this project is to showcase the phenomenal talent and capabilities of the workforce in Cumbria to complete the required demolition job as part of such a major and landmark project for the local area.

“It’s about keeping, and creating, jobs locally, and preventing the workforce having to travel to Scotland to complete the project, thus reducing the carbon footprint of the project.

“Working together we can display all the skills needed and it will be a huge benefit to Cleator Moor and Cumbria for the job to be carried out locally.”

News and Star: Graham Cartwright, projects director at ForthGraham Cartwright, projects director at Forth

The trial could last up to two years and will see an average of 30 people on-site each day.

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It is hoped that trials taking place in Cleator Moor will demonstrate the abundance of skills on offer in Cumbria.

On completion of the trial, the site at Leconfield will be cleared and returned to a similar condition to its current state.