The Anonymous Widower

‘Czech Sphinx’ Power Plant Intended To Keep Lights On

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on The Times.

This is the first paragraph.

The businessman known as the “Czech Sphinx” is set to expand his position in Britain’s energy market after securing subsidy contracts to build a new gas-fired power plant and battery storage project.

As I needed to find the answers to particular questions, I looked for and found the original press release on the EP Holdings web site, which is entitled EPH Will Build A New Gas-Fired Power Plant And Battery Storage Facility In The UK At A Cost Of More Than £1 billion.

These statements describe the project.

  • It will be a 1700MW high efficiency H-class CCGT power project and a 299MW 2-hour battery storage project
  • The power station will be built on the site of the former Eggborough coal station in East Yorkshire.

I find this to be the most significant paragraph.

The high efficiency H-class CCGT project will be the single largest flexible generation asset to be commissioned in the UK since 2012, whilst the battery project will also be one of the largest to be built in the UK to date. Given the site’s close proximity to existing National Grid infrastructure and a number of proposed CCUS and hydrogen pipeline routes, under EPUKI’s plans these projects will make a significant contribution to the UK’s energy transition and security for years to come.

This map from OpenRailwayMap, shows the relationship between the Eggborough site and the nearby Drax power station.


  1. The Eggborough power station site  is in the South-West corner of the map and is identified by the rail loop. which was used to deliver the coal.
  2. The Drax power station site is in the North-East corner of the map and is similarly identified by a rail loop.
  3. There is a high voltage transmission line connecting the two power stations.
  4. As the crow flies is about eight miles between Eggborough and Drax.

This Google Map shows the Eggborough power station site.


  1. The remains of the eight cooling towers are visible at the North of the site.
  2. The large circular black area in the middle is the coal yard with its rail loop.
  3. It is a large site.

I have looked in detail at the cleared area in the North-West of the site and the pylons of the connection to Drax are still visible.

So it looks like there is still an electrical connection of some sort to the site.

According to Wikipedia, the original coal-fired power station had a nameplate capacity of 1960 MW, so I suspect that a modernised electricity connection to handle the maximum near 2,000 MW of the new station would be possible.

This map shows the Zero Carbon Humber pipeline layout.


  1. The orange line is a proposed carbon dioxide pipeline
  2. The black line alongside it, is a proposed hydrogen pipeline.
  3. Drax, Keadby and Saltend are power stations.
  4. Keadby and Saltend are gas-fired power stations.
  5. Easington gas terminal is connected to around twenty gas fields in the North Sea.
  6. The terminal imports natural gas from Norway using the Langeled pipeline.
  7. The Rough field has been converted to gas storage and can hold four days supply of natural gas for the UK.
  8. To the North of Hull is the Aldbrough Gas Storage site, which SSE plan to convert to hydrogen storage.

The Eggborough power station site is about eight miles to the South-West of Drax.

I don’t suspect that connecting the Eggborough site to the carbon dioxide, gas and hydrogen pipelines will not be the most challenging of tasks.

So when the press release says.

Given the site’s close proximity to existing National Grid infrastructure and a number of proposed CCUS and hydrogen pipeline routes, under EPUKI’s plans these projects will make a significant contribution to the UK’s energy transition and security for years to come.

The company is not exaggerating.

It appears that carbon dioxide, gas and hydrogen pipelines can be developed and National Grid connections can be reinstated.

Eggborough Will Not Be Alone

From the EP Holdings press release, it appears that the Eggborough power station will be fitted with carbon-capture and will be hydrogen-ready.

This will make it the second power-station in the area to be fitted out in this way, after SSE’s planned Keadby 3, which is described in this page on the SSE web site in this document, which is entitled Keadby 3 Carbon Capture Power Station.

They could also be joined by Keadby Hydrogen power station.

This would mean that zero-carbon power stations in the area could include.

  • Eggborough Gas/Hydrogen – 1700 MW
  • Eggborough Battery – 299 MW
  • Keadby 3 Gas/Hydrogen – 910 MW
  • Keadby Hydrogen – 1800 MW – According to this Equinor press release.


  1. The Eggborough Battery pushes the total zero-carbon capacity over 4500 MW or 4.5 GW.
  2. The various Dogger Bank wind farms are to have a total capacity of 8 GW within ten years.
  3. The various Hornsea wind farms are to have a total capacity of 5.5 GW in a few years.

I would expect that the zero-carbon power stations would make a good fist of making up the shortfall, when the wind isn’t blowing.

Drax, Keadby 1 And Keadby 2 Power Stations


  • Drax has a nameplate capacity of 3.9 GW, of which 2.6 GW is from biomass and the rest is from coal.
  • Keadby 1 has a nameplate capacity of 734 MW.
  • Keadby 2 has a nameplate capacity of 734 MW.

How much of this capacity will be fitted with carbon capture, to provide extra zero-carbon backup to the wind farms?

Green Hydrogen From Surplus Wind Power

At times, there will be an excess of renewable energy.

I suspect, an order for a large electrolyser will be placed soon, so that surplus renewable energy can be used to create green hydrogen.

This will be stored in the two storage facilities, that are being developed in the area; Aldbrough and Rough.

Controlling The Fleet

I am by training a Control Engineer and this fleet can be controlled to provide the electricity output required, so that the carbon-dioxide produced is minimised and the cost is at a level to the agreement of producers and users.


It looks like in excess of 20 GW of reliable zero-carbon energy could be available on Humberside.

I’m sure British Steel would like to by a lot of GWhs to make some green steel at Scunthorpe.



February 24, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Mayor Rubs It In!

I took these pictures whilst waiting to get home this morning from Moorgate, whilst waiting for a 141 bus.

It’s one thing to reroute the buses, but quite another to send them up and down the old route, with plenty of space for passengers. Although, I don’t think this will help his reelection chances next year.

When the 141 bus did arrive, it was about ninety percent full.

I predicted in a letter to my MP. that this overcrowding would happen because the opening of the Elizabeth Line and the Bank Station Upgrade.

I also said similar things in Does London Need High Capacity Bus Routes To Extend Crossrail?, which I wrote in February 2022, before the Elizabeth Line opened in May.

But I didn’t get it all right, as it appeared the biggest increase in passenger numbers happened after the new escalators between the Docklands Light Railway and the Northern Line opened at Bank station. That puzzled me and I can only assume that there is a lot of traffic between the catchment area of the DLR and North East London.

Predicting the number of passengers, who will use a new railway, road or bus service is a difficult science, which very often results in a wrong answer.

In the Mysterious Case Of Rerouting The 21 Bus, it would have been better to have completed all the works at Bank, Moorgate and Old Street stations, before trying to solve the best way to deploy the buses.

In Does London Need High Capacity Bus Routes To Extend Crossrail?, I said this about the buses needed.

I suspect any route seen as an extension of Crossrail needs to have the following characteristics.

    • High frequency of perhaps a bus every ten minutes.
    • Interior finish on a par with the Class 345 trains.
    • Wi-fi and phone charging.

I would also hope the buses were carbon-free. Given that some of these routes could be quite long, I would suspect hydrogen with its longer range could be better.

Get the design of these buses correct and they could attract a large number of passengers from their cars to public transport.

  • Ten year old buses, as on the 141 bus are unacceptable.
  • Before the 21 bus was withdrawn, you noticed that some passengers wait an extra minute to get a 21 bus with its greater space and comfort.
  • Because of the better design of the stairs on modern buses and New Routemasters, I will go upstairs on these buses. But I don’t chance it on an older bus.
  • Wi-fi and phone charging would make up for the fact that the Class 345 trains don’t have it.

From experience of the 141 bus in recent days, a frequency of a bus every five minutes is probably needed now.

February 24, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Liverpool Lime Street Station And St. George’s Hall

When you arrive in a town or city by train, I believe that you should be welcomed by a wide spacious area, where you can get your bearings and meet friends.

I took these pictures outside Liverpool Lime Street station.


  1. The three main buildings on the pictures, are one Grade I and two Grade II Listed buildings.
  2. St. George’s Hall is a Grade I neoclassical building.
  3. A liver bird told me, that the magnificent floor with its 30,000 Minton tiles, will be open this summer.
  4. Lime Street station is now one of the best terminal stations in the world, both in terms of architecture and operation.
  5. The hotel on the left of the station, is now a Radisson Red hotel, after a very chequered history during the last ninety years.
  6. Not many stations welcome you to a city like Liverpool does.

In London, King’s Cross and Liverpool Street make an effort, but some stations like Paddington just deliver you to crowded, anonymous, dingy streets.

February 24, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel, World | , , | Leave a comment

A First Ride In A Five-Car Class 710 Train – 30th January 2023

These pictures are from a few weeks back, when I had a first ride in one of the new five-car Class 710 trains.

I only went between Euston and Queen’s Park stations.

February 24, 2023 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | Leave a comment