The Anonymous Widower

The Edmonton Incinerator

Although it is officially known these days as the Edmonton EcoPark, as a North Londoner, I will always know it as the Edmonton Incinerator.

I took these pictures with my drone.

These are a few facts from Wikipedia about the waste-to-energy plant.

  • It was commissioned by the Greater London Council in 1971.
  • It burns waste from the seven North-East London boroughs.
  • It generates 55 MW of electricity.

It certainly dominates the landscape alongside the North Circular Road.


It is probably not amongst the greenest of incinerators.

It is probably very much a design of the 1960s.

It is approaching fifty years old.

But it appears that things could be improving.

  • There is a large composting and recycling facility being built on the site on the site.
  • Plans exist to bring in the rubbish by barge.

This Google Map shows the site.


  1. The North Circular Road runs across the bottom of the map.
  2. All of the roads obliterated the famous Cooks Ferry Inn, where I saw the Animals play in the 1960s.
  3. The River Lee Navigation runs past the incinerator.
  4. Pymme’s Brook runs on the other side.

It looks from the map, that another reservoir is being built to the East of the canal.

The Guy Who Built The Edmonton Incinerator

I used to work with the guy, who was one of those in charge of the building of the incinerator, who when I met him, was head of the Greater London Council’s Construction Branch, who were using my project management software.

I can’t remember Mr. Samuels first name, even if I ever knew it.

  • He was an Austrian Jew, who had trained as an engineer, who arrived in the UK sometime in the 1930s.
  • He taught himself English in six weeks and got a job at Lucas.
  • At the start of World War II, he volunteered and joined the Royal Engineers.
  • He spent the whole war in bomb disposal.
  • After the war he became an observer at the Nuremberg Trials.

After all he’d been through, he told me, the worst time of his life, was those years in the early seventies when I knew him, as his wife was dying of cancer.

But he taught me a lot about project management and the real horror of war.

He never told me, how many of his relatives survived the Nazis.

What Will Happen To The Edmonton Incinerator?

This year it will be fifty years since the Edmonton Incinerator was commissioned. It must be coming to the end of its life.

I can’t find any plans, but endless groups, who want it closed rather than rebuilt.

This article in the Hackney Gazette, which is entitled Campaigners Urge North London Incinerator Bidders To Pull Out, is typical.

I am very pro recycling, but then others aren’t as these pictures show.

So if some won’t recycle properly, it will all have to go to landfill.

An Odd Tale About Recycling

I applied to be a member of the Independent Monitoring Board of a prison near, where I used to live.

I had a very interesting tour of the prison, where I met several of the inmates.

One thing surprised me.

The prison had a very comprehensive internal recycling system, whereby everything was fully sorted.

One course of training, that was offered to prisoners was how to sort and process all of the rubbish. According to the guy running the course, it was one of the most popular in the prison.

Possibly, because I was told, it prepared prisoners for a job, where there were lots of vacancies.

I wonder if the new £100million recycling centre at Edmonton will use labour trained in the Prison Service?


April 14, 2021 Posted by | Energy, World | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Air In Scotland’s Prisons 90% Cleaner, Due To Smoke-Free Policy

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the University of Stirling web site.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Scotland’s smoke-free prisons policy is protecting the health of prison staff and those in custody – with the majority no longer exposed to second-hand tobacco smoke, according to a new study.

My late wife, who probably visited Holloway Prison around two hundred times, would probably agree with Scotland’s smoke-free prisons regime.

As I do!

It should be introduced into the rest of the UK, as soon as possible.

And why shouldn’t prisons have regular drug-testing?

August 30, 2020 Posted by | World | , , | 1 Comment

Sri Lanka To Free Elderly Prisoners

I found this report on the Internet. here’s the story.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has ordered elderly prisoners over 60 years of age serving term for minor offences to be pardoned and released.

 According to Prisons Rehabilitation and Reforms Minster Chandrasiri Gajadeera, the decision comes amidst a need to reduce the number of prisoners in over-crowded prisons around the country.

 Prison sources said that older prisoners who have served more than 10 years of jail term will be released after the necessary papers have been drawn up.

 The new legislation, when passed, is expected to reduce the congestion in prisons to an extent.

Sadly, the country has re-introduced the death penalty.

But the first idea should be introduced in this country.

What is actually needed is an on-line database of prisoners, which obviously has anonymised.  Then we could see how many prisoners say had had severe strokes or had got dementia and perhaps move them into a more caring regime.

August 1, 2013 Posted by | World | , | Leave a comment

How To Stop Smoking

This story from California, is an interesting way to stop smoking. Here’s the first paragraph.

Think you’ve heard of every way possible to quit smoking? Etta Mae Lopez came up with a new one: slap a cop and go to jail, where smoking isn’t allowed.

Perhaps, we should take a leaf out of California’s book and ban smoking in prison.

May 13, 2013 Posted by | Health, News | , , | 3 Comments

The End Of the Affair?

With Vicky Pryce being released from jail this morning and Chris Huhne probably to come out too, will this mark the end of the affair?

I doubt it and it will still cause money to be wasted, some of which will have been contributed by taxpayers.

Surely, the solution to this affair, was when Huhne was found guilty of lying to a Court, he should have been banned from driving for life.  Perhaps, Pryce should have suffered the same fate, as she was aiding and abetting a convicted criminal to drive.

Perhaps, we need an offence of using a driving licence to commit crime, which should be punishable by a life ban from driving.

May 13, 2013 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | Leave a comment

Should Huhne And Pryce Go To Jail?

This stupid case, which quite frankly is all about seeing, who can be the nastiest to the other, has cost the taxpayer enough.

Obviously, the case is serious, but equally so, they are unlikely to cause any harm to anybody else, if they didn’t go to jail.

So they are a classic case for an alternative punishment.

Perhaps they should be sentenced to a certain amount of time, in something like a bail hostel, where they had to do the cooking and cleaning.  Where of course, they had to stay in each night. Perhaps they should also be made to share a room to save money.

It could even be broadcast live on Channel 5.

March 11, 2013 Posted by | News | , , | 9 Comments

Gorillas In London Zoo

I remember the famous gorilla,Guy, who came to the Zoo in the year of my birth, although he was probably born a few months before I was.

In those days his cage wasn’t as spacious as the modern gorilla enclosure, where about four gorillas live happily together.

These pictures show them inside, as it wasn’t very tropical today.

C used to tell a story about one her clients. He was an habitual criminal and every time he came out of jail, one of the first things he used to do was visit Guy in the London Zoo.

He’d tell the gorilla, that he was now out of jail, but he could see that Guy was still incarcerated.

Guy’s reply was not recorded.

January 31, 2013 Posted by | World | , , , | Leave a comment

Taking The Prison Bus

I have joked that the 274 bus, is the prison bus for Pentonville a few times, as it always seems to drop of and pick up unfortunate wives, partners and girl-friends in the vicinity of the prison.

I took the bus back to The Angel, so I could get some shopping before coming home.

What surprised me was outside the prison, I was getting a rather strong Wi-fi signal. Was it escaping?

January 22, 2013 Posted by | Computing, Transport/Travel, World | , , | Leave a comment

Hoist By His Own Petard

I’m reminded of one of my father’s favourite phrases by this story about the leader of the English Defence League.

He can’t really complain about his punishment, as I thought the EDL wanted to keep unwanted immigrants out of the country.  So what were the Americans doing? Just that, when he tried to get there using someone else’s passport.

January 7, 2013 Posted by | News | , , , | Leave a comment

A Tale Of Two Young Women

Today we had the good news of Malala Yousafzai leaving hospital after being shot by the Taleban in Pakistan  for speaking up for the education of girls.

But the student, who was raped and murdered in India hasn’t been as lucky. The latest news is here on the BBC.

What is it in the sub-continent about their attitude to women and girls?

But saying that, there is a surprisingly large number of Asian men in jail in the UK for sex offences.

January 4, 2013 Posted by | News | , , , , , , | Leave a comment