The NDA runs the nuclear site south of Whitehaven

Sellafield moots office in Millom   

Sarah Townsend

The Government has set out plans to convert a Cumbria library into an office for employees of the Sellafield nuclear facility.

The UK’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, which runs the Sellafield facility, is in talks with Cumbria County Council to convert the library in Millom into flexible workspace for NDA staff.

Under the plans, the office would accommodate “touchdown” staff, working in the region on a project-by-project basis, rather than as a permanent base, the NDA said in a statement.

The building, which is located south of the Sellafield nuclear reactor, would create additional work options for people who live further away from the Sellafield site. It also aims to reduce pressure on the country’s roads by cutting the number of car journeys to and from Sellafield, the statement added.

The parties are in talks to finalise lease arrangements and draw up plans for work needed to upgrade and refurbish the building. Cumbria County Council intends to consult on the proposals, and no application has yet been submitted.

The NDA would need to appoint an architect and planning team to bring the proposals forward.

Paul Foster, chief executive of Sellafield, said: “Moving people off the Sellafield site frees up valuable space for decommissioning and reduces the number of vehicles on the roads.

“Most importantly, it stimulates economic activity in our towns and makes employment opportunities more accessible for local communities.”

The proposals are part of a wider strategy to maximise social value from nuclear sites around the UK, said Andrew van der Lem, head of government relations for the NDA.

The new office would be “the biggest development in Millom for a generation”, added Copeland mayor Mike Starkie.

We will be discussing the nuclear industry and other topics at the Cumbria Development Update on 27 February at the Castle Green Hotel in Kendal.

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