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Battersea Power Station Then, Now & The Future

Battersea Power Station Then, Now & The Future

Battersea Power Plant was in operation between the 1930s and 1980s. At its highest, it was generating a fifth of the total amount of power in London, delivering to various recognizable landmarks in the city, including Buckingham Palace and Houses of Parliament. 

When was Battersea Power Station Built?

Operations began on the site around 1929. Sir Giles Gilbert Scot, a renowned architect at the time, was in charge of red telephone boxes in Britain and joined the project. Initially, the chimneys were supposed to squarely designed and not round.

In 1935, Battersea A, the initial phase of the plant was completed. The covering of the western brace chimneys stood at 101 meters high. On their part, the vents measured 50 m in height, and the wash towers on which they sit, 51m in height.


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Battesea Power Station was used for Guidance during World War 2

Around 1940, the RAF pilots used white vapor plumes emanating from the chimneys to give them a direction towards home in the fog weather. The Luftwaffe took advantage of the plumes to navigate as well, which expounds the reasons behind the station to avert excessive bombing. 

Come 1944, Battersea B, the 2nd phase of the Power Plant, started producing power. The plant went ahead to initiate a gas washing procedure to cut down on Sulphur emissions, with the extra heat generated directed beneath the Thames through a city heating plan for 1,600 households in Pimlico. 

The 5th chimney and the 2nd phase of the Power Station were completed in 1955, with the station reaching its highest production capacity. The gap in the central boiler room was so extensive that it could accommodate the St Paul's Cathedral. 

On the 20th of April, 1964, an electric breakdown at the station led to blackouts across the city of London, including BBC TV station, which was planning to unveil BBC Two the very night. The unveiling was postponed until the following day at 11:00 am. 

Battersea Power Station's accidential Rockstar Behaviour

Around 1977, an inflatable pinkish pig moving between both chimneys appeared on the front page of, Animals, Pink Floyd's folder. The pig was harnessed to a section of the vents; however, it lost its anchorages and moved into Heathrow Airports flight path. Police helicopters monitored its way until its landing off Kent's coastal region. 


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The Battersea Power Plants attained its Grade II status in 1980. Presented by Historic England, the listed structures mark and rejoice its unsurpassed architectural and remarkable interest. Also, they were listed among the planning system so that they can be secured for upcoming generations. 

Battersea Power Station's Future

In 1983, the power plant was shut down and stopped producing electricity. It was sold by Battersea Leisure in 1987 and also by Parkview in 1993. In 2007, the station was upgraded to Grade II* rank. Below six percent of the registered buildings are categorized as essential structures of particular concern. 

The power plant was bought by the current stakeholders: Sime Darby Property & the Employers Provident Fund, and SP Setia. The action brought to end years of neglect. Operations began the subsequent year to revamp the forty-two-acre field around the plant to develop a new group of houses, cafes, shops, cultural grounds, restaurants, and free space for London's city.  


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