Hinton: The Nuclear Retreat

  • Leslie Hannah


The industry’s experience of government intervention in their planning over the years prior to the establishment of the National Economic Development Council, had been a far from happy one. They themselves recognised from experience the difficulty of forecasting the pattern and growth in demand: they had substantially under-estimated their sales growth and had fallen behind in building the generating plant and mains to meet it. Government intervention — in controlling their capital budgets, or influencing their choice of fuel for power stations — seemed in retrospect to have made matters worse in most respects save the decision to use more oil. They therefore viewed the prospect of increasing government involvement in planning with some wariness, though they were pleased that it seemed to be accompanied by a far more positive approach to investment in growth — with electric power leading that investment — than had been manifested earlier. The ambivalence of the industry’s feelings about government planning was nowhere more evident than in the CEGB, which had for five years been trying to come to terms with the problems posed for the management of power generation by earlier nuclear decisions.


Capital Cost Fuel Element Nuclear Station Capital Budget Supply Industry 
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Notes and References

  1. R. F. Pocock, Nuclear Power (Old Woking, 1977 );Google Scholar
  2. R. Williams, The Nuclear Power Decisions: British Policies, 1953–78 (1980).Google Scholar
  3. 2.
    E.g. F. H. S. Brown and J. Henderson, ‘Progress on the First Nuclear Power Stations: Bradwell, Berkeley, Hinkley Point and Hunterston’, Proceedings of the British Electrical Power Convention 1959.Google Scholar
  4. 5.
    E.g. H. Macmillan, Riding the Storm 1956–9 (1971) pp. 535–6.Google Scholar
  5. 11.
    E.g. C. Hinton, ‘The Development of Nuclear Energy for Electricity Supply in Great Britain’, Proceedings of the British Electrical Power Convention 1958.Google Scholar
  6. 17.
    E.g. J. C. Duckworth and W. H. C. Pilling, ‘Nuclear Energy in Great Britain’, Proceedings of the British Electrical Power Convention 1957, p. 456.Google Scholar
  7. 18.
    M. Gowing, Independence and Deterrence: Britain and Atomic Energy 1945–1952 (1974) vol. 2, p. 298.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Electricity Council 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leslie Hannah
    • 1
  1. 1.London School of EconomicsUK

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