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Battersea Power Station finally opens to the public TODAY after 40 years of decline

Battersea Power Station is first open to the public after being in a state of disrepair for decades.

Standing tall and mighty against the backdrop of the River Thames, the iconic Grade II listed Art Deco building has been restored to its former glory, complete with a shopping centre, food court, public square and even a pedestrianized high street.

Simon Murphy, boss of the Battersea Power Station Development Company (BPDC), described the eight-year restoration project as a ‘Herculian task’.

He said: ‘Today is a historic and hugely festive moment as we open Battersea Power Station and Electric Boulevard to the public.

“Many said it was impossible, several tried and failed, but we’ve managed to bring the Battersea Power Station back to life so it can be enjoyed for generations to come.”

Battersea Power Station, in South London, opens to the public for the first time after being in a state of disrepair for decades

Turbine Hall B at Battersea Power Station during development work, pictured in July 2007
The finished product: what Turbine Hall B at Battersea Power Station looks like today

Before and after: Turbine Hall B at Battersea Power Station has been transformed into a shopping center with major high street brands and local and independent businesses

Control Room B has been transformed into an experiential cocktail bar that transports guests back to the 1950s when the second half of the Power Station was built

Control Room B has been transformed into an experiential cocktail bar that transports guests back to the 1950s when the second half of the Power Station was built

Battersea Power Station closed its doors nearly 40 years ago, in 1983, but today it is open to the public for the first time.

Work on the power station started in 1929, with the first power generation in 1933, but there was initially only one turbine hall with two chimneys.

Battersea Power Station expanded as electricity needs grew in the capital, supplying Turbine Hall B with power in 1944 and in 1955 the fourth and last chimney was completed – it has since been dismantled and rebuilt during the restoration project.

At its peak, the Battersea Power Station supplied a fifth of London’s electricity, including Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament.

In 1983, the power station was decommissioned and abandoned for years before several failed attempts were made to redevelop the site.

Malaysian investors bought the Power Station for £400 million in 2012, with a view to redevelopment of the site, and saw the King and Queen of Malaysia lead the opening ceremony on Thursday.

Queen Mary and a young Princess Elizabeth II (pictured left) shown around Control Room A of the Battersea Power Station in April 1964

Queen Mary and a young Princess Elizabeth II (pictured left) shown around Control Room A of the Battersea Power Station in April 1964

Smoke coming from the four chimneys of the Battersea Power Station in December 1962.  The white chimneys towering over the Thames have since been dismantled and rebuilt as part of the renovation work

Smoke coming from the four chimneys of the Battersea Power Station in December 1962. The white chimneys towering over the Thames have since been dismantled and rebuilt as part of the renovation work

Visitors can now discover the Power Station’s turbine halls, which have been meticulously restored and transformed into a shopping destination.

Turbine Hall A reflects the opulent Art Deco glamor of the 1930s when the power station was built.

Meanwhile, Turbine Hall B, which was completed in the 1950s, has a more brutalist, industrial look and feel.

The Power Station’s two control rooms, which controlled the distribution of power from Carnaby Street to Wimbledon, have also been fully restored.

Control Room A: Pictured in 2013
Control Room A: Pictured Today

Control Room A, the first to be built and used to be vital to send coal-fired power to many homes in the city, will be a unique event space.

Turbine Hall A during construction work in 2007. The new Turbine Hall has been transformed into a glamorous 1930s-style shopping destination according to developers BPDC

Turbine Hall A during construction work in 2007. The new Turbine Hall has been transformed into a glamorous 1930s-style shopping destination according to developers BPDC

A view of Turbine Hall B, which is now a shopping destination, including chain stores and independent stores

A view of Turbine Hall B, which is now a shopping destination, including chain stores and independent stores

Features to remind the public of the power station's historical past.  Pictured in Turbine Hall B

Features to remind the public of the power station’s historical past. Pictured in Turbine Hall B

Features to remind the public of the power station's historical past.  Pictured in Turbine Hall B

Features to remind the public of the power station’s historical past. Pictured in Turbine Hall B

The original Control Room A, the first to be built and used to be vital to send coal-fired power to many homes in the city, will be a unique event space.

And Control Room B has been transformed into an exciting new all-day bar concept, where customers can get a closer look at the Control Room’s original dials and controls.

The power plant’s Boiler House will become Apple’s new headquarters in London, the workplace for more than 1,000 employees.

Sitting above the Boiler House is the ‘jewel in the crown’ of the development – 18 ‘Sky Villas’ – luxury apartments nestled amongst roof terraces and gardens. They belong to the 254 apartments that make up the housing stock here.

The original Control Room A, built in the 1970s

The original Control Room A, built in the 1970s

Restored to its former glory: Control Room A now

Restored to its former glory: Control Room A now

Visitors can even pay to climb the 190-meter-tall northwest chimney in a glass elevator for a 360-degree panoramic view of the city from a platform, in what has been hailed as an ‘icing on the cake for our redevelopment’.

Dan Westley, leasing director at Battersea Power Station Development Company, added that it was a ‘truly unique attraction’.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said: ‘As a lifelong South Londoner, I am delighted to see the iconic Battersea Power Station open its doors for the first time in forty years as a new addition to the thriving shopping and entertainment landscape. from London.

This redevelopment of a 20th century landmark in London has already contributed to new investment, vital transport links and jobs for local people.

“Battersea Power Station will now breathe new life into this part of London, attracting more investment and boosting our economy as we build a better London for all.”

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