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Tilbury Energy Centre

RWE’s Tilbury power station site has a long and established history of power generation. Tilbury B Power Station began full operation in 1969 and, until 2011, operated as a coal-fired power station with the capacity to generate 1,131MW of electricity for the National Grid.

In early 2011, RWE was granted the necessary consents from the Environment Agency and Local Planning Authority to convert all three of the power station’s operational units to generate power from 100% sustainable biomass. The converted plant re-opened in 2012 and ran on biomass for the remainder of its lifetime. Operation of the plant on biomass rather than coal resulted in greenhouse gas savings in excess of 70%.

The station was scheduled to close under the EU’s Large Combustion Plant (LCPD) Directive, giving it 20,000 hours of operation from 1 January 2008. After over 40 years as a coal-fired plant, in 2011 Tilbury commenced generation on 100% sustainable biomass for the remainder of its LCPD hours.

On 13 August 2013 the station generated its final unit of electricity and after 46 years of successful operation, and a combined total of 57 years of electricity generation at the site, the station closed.


In early 2016 part of the Tilbury site was sold for redevelopment. In January 2016 the demolition of RWE’s remaining site began, with demolition contractor Brown and Mason. The demolition of the site received prior approval from Thurrock Council which covers  demolition methodology, hours of working and operations on site.

The local community and stakeholders have been kept informed throughout the demolition process and are given prior notice to any explosive demolition activity.

The demolition is progressing well and four successful controlled explosive demolitions have already taken place.

The other main structures such as the chimneys, boiler house and bunker house are scheduled for explosive demolition later this year. Further details on these milestones will be provided nearer the time. The complete demolition of the site is expected towards the end of 2018.

What has been happening at RWE Generation UK

Since the closure of a number of our power stations across the UK, our Business Development teams have been assessing all land owned by RWE Generation in the UK for future power generation opportunities. The ability to develop future power generation investment options is important for RWE.  However,  we have more land than is required and so are selectively divesting land that is surplus to our requirements.

This approach sees us both holding the best strategic sites for our business whilst maximising value by divesting those surplus to our needs.

Over the past two years we have sold;

Willington site and associated consent for CCGT and gas pipeline

  • Part of Didcot A Power Station site
  • Part of Tilbury Power Station site
  • Fawley Power Station and the site