Grahame N's Web Pages



After school and 'A'levels, I joined the C.E.G.B. (Central Electricity Generating Board) - this was around 1964 or so - there was a graduate training scheme - I was taken on as a T.S.T. (Technical Staff Trainee) - was enrolled at Portsmouth Polytechnic (later Portsmouth University) and started workshop training at Portsmouth Power Station. To be fair - the training scheme was very good - a split sandwich degree course (6 months work and 6 months uni. each year). I was at various locations including Portsmouth, Southampton and Marchwood Power Stations and Nursling Sub-Station, and in Mancheser at AEI for manufacturere's training, but ended up with a 'proper' job at the new giant-size Fawley Power Station, down here on Southampton Water. Most of these places are now closed - we don't use things like coal or oil to generate electricity these days - just hope the wind will blow, the sun will shine and waste imported natural gas and mashed up trees!

I guess most people enjoyed work - for much of the time I was also Hon.Sec. of the Sports & Social Club - so helped organise various events, plus leaving parties as people took early retirement deals (including myself!). Some of the evidence is on another page - more may come to light later .... we did keep the place running as well - honest!

One of the badges we gave away to visitors on the Annual Open Days and for coach party visiits like school parties - I still have mine!

There was also a carrier bag for visitors to fill with leaflets etc.

One of the picture postcards handed out to visitors
Fawley Power Station - used the heavy waste oil from the nearby Esso Refinery - closed now, but not yet dead and buried (bit like me!)
- 2000MW output (huge) and one of the most efficient in the UK - somewhat like the staff there I guess!
I still salute that chimney (650ft) whenever I spot it - can't fault the retirement deal and pension! (Does still keep me in holidays & red wine!)

The place from the air - photo probably commissioned by the CEGB - used in the local paper "The Echo" I think

Another aerial picture - during the construction phase

Our employer the CEGB, had its own film unit and produced many useful films, both for in-house training and for a bit of propaganda! Naturally at Fawley, we used some of these films - then on 16mm sound. Later the training section transferred them to video tape (yes it was a long time ago!). Sadly when the Power Station was closing, much of the 16mm films were consigned to the skip - luckily a few survived. Here is a growing list of CEGB films to see on YouTube.


1. Watch "RIDING THE HURRICANE" GB 1988 - on

An interesting film depicting the effect on the UK electricity power distribution system of the serious hurricane that struck much of the South-East of the UK on October 15th 1987, causing major disruption to the electricity system and the recovery from this major incident. Produced by the CEGB in 1988. Approx 14 mins.

2. Watch "POWER FROM THE WIND" GB 1989 - on 02Oct2017

Another interesting film, again made by (or for), the CEGB, explaining the history of using wind power for energy, more recently for electricity generation. In the days when it was made (1989), wind power was not generally in use in Europe, but now of course, the case is rather different. Introduced by David Bellamy; watch the beginning, much of this was filmed in the Solent and at Lepe Beach, both near to Fawley Power Station; in fact the film crew were based at Fawley for a few days - I vaguely remember. Approx 26mins.

Fawley Power Station - Control Room - Common Services Panel - pictured in May 2018 - now redundant!

Fawley Power Station - Control Room - Units 1 & 2 Control Panels - pictured in May 2018 - now redundant!

Fawley Power Station - Control Room - General view - pictured in May 2018 - now redundant!

Fawley Power Station - Control Room - General view - pictured in May 2018 - now redundant!
(Controol Panels for Units 3 & 4 are stripped out - I believe used for another feature film recently)



Company / corporate ties / did the ladies have scarves I wonder?

Yes the company and our Power Station had ties! The tie on the left was a CEGB company tie. Maybe used at formal functions or on Open Days
- a bit before my time I think - some old stock was found at the Portsmouth Headquarters, so I bought one. The tie on the right hand side was
designed at Fawley probably for a 20 or twenty five year celebration - they were in red or blue I think - the logo is supposed to mix electricty
with the New Forest environment, but the manager kept saying the logo looked too large, so the final outcome was far too small!

Maybe these ties will be collectable one day! I know at my school the Prefects Room had a fantastic tie collection - from all over - generally the
end clipped from each tie - each was duly annotated. When I was back there for a visit a few years later it was all gone - consigned to the skip -
and by then - the school also had girls!! (OK it was, or is, Churcher's College at Petersfield - how times change!)

The CEGB had an excellent management training centre at a Manor House type place - Bricket Wood - yes I'm in the middle row!
(sad; the day the industry was privatised all the research, training centres etc. were sold off - what a sheer waste!)

Yes! That was the label on the door to our data processing computer systems block - I unscrewed this when I took early retirement and that system was closed
Think when I first got involved with the computer systems, I was "Information Systems Engineer", so later became "Management Systems Engineer" -
(management grades in the Industry were all " Engineers", same as the Navy titles I guess - it was all steam after all!)

My last work at Fawley Power Station was computers! Well Data-Processing I think is, or was, the correct term. Many of the larger power stations installed networked information management systems for things like Stores and Work Planning. I think Fawley and Didcot were the lead stations - maybe because we had the smarter staff, or perhaps more that Fawley was in about the best area for a management 'jolly' - the New Forest, excellent hotels and restaurants, and even the power station had a fancy Control Block (nick-named 'Space City') looking out over Southampton Water with a comfortable restaurant with similar views - and not a coal tip in sight!

The actual control room has been used in various feature films old and new over the years.

Burroughs name plate from our B1955 system - a bit worn and battered though - like me!

Anyhow, the company choosen for the main frames was Burroughs, later Unisys. I recall our system was a B1955 machine. I pinched the nameplate from one of the cabinets when it was closed down, but can't yet find it, so have to be content with a spares box label. (No! Just found that nameplate - see above! gln 05Dec2017 ) A very good data-processing computer system, local Southampton back-up service centre with excellent and caring staff - sadly all gone now......

And I even got an award for working for the C.E.G.B. (Central Electicity Generating Board)!
Maybe it was good fun most of the time, but the pension is even better!
(the date was 1984, but by the time I retired it was 30 years service!)

Another vintage photo of the old place - 'control block, canteen and the dock by night' - another postcard for open day visitors I think
all now shut and soon to go - marina; container & ferry port; housing estate; - oops! Watch this space!


More than 1,000 homes could be built on the site of a disused power station site near Southampton following its sale to a developer.

Land Registry documents show London-based Long Harbour bought the 300-acre Fawley Power Station site for £25m.

The financial group said it planned to build homes and a marina on the site on the edge of the New Forest.

The oil-fired power station was decommissioned in 2013 after operating for more than 40 years.

A Long Harbour statement said: "Working with Fawley Waterside Management Company, Long Harbour has begun works towards achieving outline planning consent for a mixed-use development including over 1,000 residential units, commercial space and an active leisure marina."

Once the oompany was privatised, part became National Power - for a while they sponsored hot-air balloons

Watch out for other Fawley Power Station photo pages - the Camera Club for example.

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Created 30Sep2017 .......... Last updated: 14 September 2018 ........... photo/fawleypsgeneral.htm ............ İGrahame L. Newnham's Web Pages MMXV11
02Oct2017 - "Power From The Wind" upload added / 06Oct2017 - corporate ties added / 05Dec2017 - Burroughs badge added
14Sep2018 - Recent Cintrol Room photos added