On Sunday, March 20, 1977,the Central Electricity Generating Board disconnected Portsmouth’s contribution to the National Grid, ending 83 years of electricity generation.
The power station in St Mary Street, Old Portsmouth, opened in 1894 and the Blue Bell Tavern, the South of England Music Hall plus several houses, were demolished to make way for it.
In 1955 it contributed 475,901,000 units of electricity to the National Grid and 172,000 tons of coal were delivered each year for its 13 boilers.
The end for the colossal land/seamark building came in 1981 and reader Geoff Witte from Rowlands Castle took the photos on this page recording its demise.
He says: ‘I lived in Warblington Street under the shadow of the building and watched the demolition.
‘In 1981 the two chimneys were demolished brick by brick and I recall the men having their lunch 100ft-plus in the air with their legs hanging over the side at the top of the chimneys – quite fearless.’
He adds: ‘In the next 18 months the generating rooms were partly dismantled and finally demolished with explosives.’