EXCLUSIVE: Olympics halts nuclear trains through Hackney

12:19 21 July 2011

A train transporting steel flasks containing spent nuclear fuel rods

A train transporting steel flasks containing spent nuclear fuel rods

Archant

Trains carrying radioactive material from nuclear plants on a line through the Olympic Park and on to Hackney are to be suspended throughout the London 2012 Games, it was revealed this week.

The trains carry spent nuclear fuel rods in 30cm thick reinforced steel lead-lined flasks from the Suffolk’s Sizewell reactor along the former North London Line en-route to Sellafield, in Cumbria, to be reprocessed.

For over 30 years anti-nuclear protestors have campaigned to halt the transportation of the hazardous material by rail through the centre of London claiming it was a potential disaster risk and a terrorist target, with the Olympics heightening that threat.

Rail operators Direct Rail Services confirmed the suspension following discussions with the Olympic Delivery Authority and Magnox Ltd, which manages the nuclear plants.

It stressed the decision had nothing to do with terrorist fears explaining it was designed free up space for more passenger trains because of the increased demand during the nine week period of the Olympics and Paralympics.

“As responsible operators, we always work closely with our regulators and suppliers in all our areas of operation and making these temporary changes to our spent nuclear fuel movements will ensure that we do not impede on passenger train operators’ ability to deliver an efficient service,” said a DRS spokeswoman.

The trains currently run through the Olympic site and pass through four Hackney stations - Hackney Wick, Homerton, Hackney Central, and Dalston Kingsland.

Trains from Dungeness Nuclear Power Station, which travel through South London before meeting the north London line at Willesden, will not be suspended.

The Nuclear Trains Action Group (NTAG) - part of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament , which has been fighting to stop the trains for decades is to go ahead this Saturday with a demonstration where protestors will don radiation suits at stations along the North London Line and stage a “die-in” at Stratford at 1.45pm.

NTAG chairwoman Mary Flanagan, of Middleton Road, Dalston, said: “This is the first we’ve heard of it and we’ve been in talks with them for years. I like to think of this as a victory – we’ve been fighting hard for this. It’s a huge relief.”

Latest London transportation news

Tuesday, May 3, 2016
Will the capital be struck by yet another strike? (Photo: Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images)

Around 1,500 maintenance workers are about to start voting on whether to go on strike over plans for the long-awaited Night Tube.

Friday, April 29, 2016
Londoners heading out of the capital for the bank holiday are being warned to expect traffic mares (Picture: PA Images)

Londoners should expect heavy traffic both ends of the long weekend and several rail networks are running reduced services, with the Gatwick Express not operating at all.

Friday, April 29, 2016
A person was hit by a train this morning at Romford station

A person has died after being struck by a train at Romford station this morning, leading to hour-long line closures on TfL Rail, Network Rail and London Overground services into Liverpool Street.

Thursday, April 28, 2016
Tsvetomir Georgiev exposed himself to women on many Tube trains (Picture: BTP)

A ‘persistent pervert’ travelled around the London Underground ‘targeting lone women’ - engaging the women in conversation before ‘touching himself inappropriately’ in front of them, inciting ‘considerable fear’.

Thursday, April 28, 2016
The capital has been experiencing some stormy weather  (Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

At least three planes are thought to have been struck as lightning forked through the skies over the capital.

Thursday, April 28, 2016
(Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

South West trains to and from Waterloo station are facing delays of up to 20 minutes this morning - and some services have been cancelled altogether.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more
Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport