Battersea Power Station to Lose Chimneys During Renovation

Battersea Power Station could be temporarily left with just one solitary chimney after developers applied to change conditions of work on the listed building. Last week the Battersea Power Station Development Company (BPSDC) applied for permission to change the sequence in which the listed building’s chimneys are rebuilt.

The new application, called a deed of variation, proposes a change to the original legal agreement, between Wandsworth Council and English Heritage, so that the first chimney could be rebuilt on its own.

The power station with one chimney

The remaining three would then be rebuilt at the same time. A safeguard will also be added to the legal agreement which will require the developer to provide a bond for the full value of the chimney works contract before the project can get under way. The council could use this bond to pay for the completion of the project if for any reason the developer failed to finish.

No changes are being proposed to the design of the chimneys which would be constructed according to the original architecture plans so that they match the appearance of the originals. The development company estimates that changing the sequence of the chimney works would mean the power station restoration project could be completed two years earlier.

In 2011 Wandsworth Council and English Heritage approved plans for each of the decayed chimneys to be rebuilt after successive engineering studies showed all four were beyond repair.

Last month the Wandsworth Guardian reported campaigner’s fears the power station could permanently lose its famous chimneys once they were taken down. and a final decision on whether to approve the proposals will be made by the council’s planning applications committee.

“It is entirely plausible the owners will take the chimneys down and then contrive some reason why they can’t be rebuilt. Council planners are now examining the application in detail.’ Keith Garner – Power station campaigner 

View the Wandsworth application and enter reference number 2013/3076.


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