Monday, 21 April 2014

An information update

On Wednesday the 16 Aprils Blog at Oxford, (LINK) I posted a photograph of the old building we were moored opposite. Following that I received the following information from Dave Dobbin about the history of the building.DSCF5031  DSCF5029

 

FROM Dave Dobbin

This is the Old Osney Power Station, built in 1892. It was Oxford's first electrical power plant, open until 1968. As it would have been prestigious for the town, it's no wonder it was made as ornate as possible to show how well Oxford could 'do' industrial building for, what was then, the most modern form of lighting, etc.
It was acquired by Oxford University in 1971 and turned into a research laboratory for the Department of Engineering Science, where researchers performed cutting-edge experimentation in hypersonics and turbo-machinery until 2010, when the department outgrew the ageing facility and moved into a more modern building.
Someone has tried to get a definitive answer from the University about their plans for the building as he had thought it would be ideal to convert into housing accommodation, but the Registrar seemed very evasive about what they would do with this otherwise empty building, merely stating it ' is in functional use by departments of the University' and they had 'no current plan for the sale or redevelopment of the Old Power Station site'. Over the last couple of years it has been used for an art exhibition.

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