A visitor centre at nuclear power plant Sizewell B welcomed its 55,000th visitor – as its replacement takes shape on site.
The centre opened its doors in December 2012 – but a new building is set to host visitors to Sizewell B – and the next generation plant, Sizewell C, which will sit beside it.
Schools and colleges from across Suffolk and Norfolk use their visits to the site near Leiston to learn about how electricity is made – and the centre is also popular among tourists.
When it was built in the 1990s, Sizewell B, a pressurised water reactor (PWR), was an engineering feat – the first of its kind to be constructed in the UK.
Work started in 1987 and was completed in 1995. Both it and Sizewell C are EDF Energy operations.
As the Sizewell C project progresses, visitors are also able to learn about future energy production.
The new visitor centre will be able to accommodate more students and visits to the station and site.
Groundworks are ongoing – with local contractors including family-run plant machinery company Tru7 and Ipswich-based Barnes Construction gaining contracts involved in the works.
Sizewell visitor centre coordinator Sarah Osborne said: “We are delighted the visitor centre has proved to be so popular with local communities and supportive to the school curriculum.
“With our new centre on the horizon we hope to be able to offer even more workshops and visits in the future.”
Tru7 is supplying plant machinery to help relocate Sizewell B buildings to make space for Sizewell C.
Barnes Construction – which staretd on site this week – is working on the construction contract for the Sizewell visitor centre, training and admininstrative offices.