SSEB ~ Inverkip,
Author – Martino
Inverkip power station is Scotland’s first oil-fired power station. It’s huge chimney (236 m) is the tallest structure in Scotland and the third tallest in the UK. Construction started in 1970 and in 1979 it was completed. However, by the time it was finished an oil-fired powerstation was not thought to be economical anymore. This was a result of the 1973 oil-crisis. Therefore the station was never used at full capacity (1200 MW). The only short period of time Inverkip power station was used was during the miners’ strike of 1984/85.
Demolition is scheduled for 2009 to make room for apartments and small businesses.
It’s 06.00 o’clock Saturday morning and we meet up with Mr Cuban Bloodhound & G at a small parking lot almost next to the power station. It’s raining and still dark outside. We talk about nothing, but we talk. Stewart is busy with a heavy hangover and I’m just not awake yet.
We start walking along the road and a little further we head into the bushes. It had been raining all night and it’s freezing cold. I’m sinking away in the muddy wet ground. The freezing wet mud is creeping through the holes in my shoes. Why did I only take my old sneakers with holes to a place like this?
We’re searching for a hole in the fence. All the holes haves recently been closed by security and the only opening we find in the 5 ft tall, barb wired fence, is a small whole just above head-height. It’s not like we have a choice. One at a time we pull ourselves up by our hands, high enough to put our legs through the hole and drop on the ground at the other side.
We’ re all past the fence and are hiding in the bushes. S informs us about what comes next. We have to run across wide open terrain and we have to hurry. It’s getting light and we need the cover of darkness to avoid being spotted by the security camera’s. We run half a mile or so and hurry up the steel stairs on the outside as quietly as we possibly can be. We climb up, down and up again. This is the point we’re as good as safe from security, if they had spotted us on the camera’s they would’ve been here by now. Then the bottle of coca cola we took with us drops down through the steel structure making a lot of noise. Security is only just up the road. We hold our breaths and with our hearts beating in our throats we listen for any sound coming from the security booth. Nothing.
We balance ourselves over a small steel beam towards a boarded up whole. S removes the plate and now we’re actually inside the power station.
S takes us straight up to the huge and impressive 70’s style control room. It’s pitch black inside until he switches the lights on and turns on the heater. He tells us to enjoy ourselves and that he still suffers the hangover from last night, so he’s gonna get some sleep and we’ll meet back here for lunch……
We waited for darkness to set in, before we got out. Meaning we explored this science-fiction like place for 13 hours, living on 6 small, very dry sandwiches, a few chewing gums and no cola. We got out the same way we got in and at 1900 hours we walk back to our cars. We need food, drinks and some serious relaxing.
Mr Cuban Bloodhound, thank you very very much for showing us around this awesome place!
Thank you G for the good company! (especially when S was sleeping
When : March 2009
With: Bart, Mr Cuban Bloodhound & G