Nuclear Beaches

Nuclear power stations are generally located in remote places far from cities and densely populated areas for safety reasons, as demonstrated by the recent Fukushima crisis in Japan. Also due to their design (the cooling system and steam turbine in particular) they are often by the sea in the UK for easy access to seawater. The coastline of the UK homes many nuclear power stations and as some of these pass in to decommissioning recent news suggests new ones are set to take their place.

Many of these remote coastal locations chosen for the power plants are not sign-posted on the local main roads yet the plants are often close to villages, to small communities that continue on as they did before the mid 20th century development in their area, many of which still sending out fishing boats from the shore. And despite the obvious radioactive dangers of the discharge of used seawater, the plant’s warm water outlets create a dramatic growth in the local food chain with small sea creatures thriving, attracting fish, which ultimately attract birds and people.

Visiting these locations and seeing these altars of mankind’s attempt to excerpt control over the fundamentals of nature set in an area when nature itself has been on the whole left to it’s own devices is visually fascinating. The strange, yet fragile, constant rebalancing of the local environment is seemingly unique to these atomic shorelines.

Bradwell, Sizewell & Dungeness
Olympus OM10, Holga 120N & Nikon FE2
Colour, Slide & B&W 35mm and Colour 120 film