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Sellafield Location

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Keep informed with the latest news and developments from the NDA

Performance Updates

Find out more about Sellafield (including Calder Hall and Windscale)'s Performance, visit our Programme Performance Updates section.

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Home > Our Sites > Sellafield (including Calder Hall and Windscale)  

Sellafield (including Calder Hall and Windscale)

Sellafield site 

CA20 1PG

Tel. 019467 28333

Sellafield is a large and complex nuclear chemical facility located in West Cumbria. The site has played a pivotal role within the nuclear industry since the 1940s. Site operations include fuel reprocessing, fuel fabrication and storage of nuclear materials and radioactive wastes.

Calder Hall, located on the site, was the world's first commercial nuclear power station. Generation started in 1956 and ceased in 2003.

Windscale, also located on the site, comprises three reactors. Two of the reactors were shut down in 1957 and the third one was closed in 1981. Substantial damage by fire to one of the reactors in 1957 has created significant additional decommissioning challenges.


Age Operated since 1947
Site Stakeholder Group West Cumbria Site Stakeholder Group (WCSSG)
Site Licensee Sellafield Limited
Parent Body Organisation Nuclear Management Partners (NMP) Ltd
Status Defuelling and Partial Decommissioning
Cost - Lifetime
(total discounted nuclear liability)

 * The costs of discharging the nuclear liability will be incurred over a significant period of time. To take account of the time value of money, the costs are "discounted" back to a present value. Effectively this is the amount that would need to be invested today, at a set rate of interest (the discount rate) in order to pay for the liability in the future as it falls due.

Year Key Activities


Final site clearance

2105 -

Calder Hall final site clearance


Transfer of stored HLW to HLW repository


All ILW from the Legacy Ponds and Silos retrieved, conditioned and stored


Transfer of stored ILW to Geological Disposal Facility (GDF)


Windscale Pile 1 and 2 in Care and Maintenance with fuel and isotopes removed


Vitrification of liquid HLW complete

First Generation Magnox Storage Pond - start of residual retrievals


Calder Hall site enters Care and Maintenance phase
During this stage the reactor is left to cool. Most of the structures are removed, and the reactor building is left in a safe state which requires minimum supervision, until final site clearance.


Vitrification of liquid HLW complete


Complete return of overseas customers HLW


Pile Fuel Cladding Silo - start of waste retrievals

Magnox Swarf Storage Silos - start of bulk retrievals

THORP reprocessing complete


Pile Fuel Storage Pond - start of residual retrieval


Magnox reprocessing completed


Highly Active Liquor (HAL) stocks reduced to "steady state" volume

First Generation Magnox Storage Pond - start of bulk retrievals


Completion of defuelling at Calder Hall


Complete Active commissioning of Sellafield Product and Residue Store (SPRS)