A Unique Journey In Preserving Nuclear Industrial Heritage
Free (open access)
175 - 186
J. B. Gunn
The Dounreay nuclear site, which was built upon a former naval airfield on the north coast of Caithness, is now being decommissioned. The nuclear journey continues with the development of decommissioning technology and the creation of a unique heritage strategy, the first for a UK nuclear site. The aim is to preserve a distinct lasting cultural legacy. The strategy took over two years to develop and includes a novel and bespoke implementation plan agreed through a programme of stakeholder involvement. The work brought together various national bodies to consider nuclear industrial heritage for the very first time and was a challenging learning experience. A Heritage Officer was appointed to manage the implementation plan which includes; an advisory panel of heritage experts, artefacts, photographs, film, records, building recording, oral history, computer modelling, a website, academic studies, art projects, promotion and history publications. This paper covers the journey in developing the heritage strategy for Dounreay, progress with the implementation plan and the lessons that have been learned over the last five years. Keywords: Dounreay, nuclear decommissioning, nuclear heritage, industrial heritage, nuclear history. 1 Introduction During the latter half of the 20th Century Dounreay scientists and engineers developed world class nuclear technology at the site of the UK’s flagship centre for fast reactor research. The site, which was built upon a former naval airfield on the north coast of Caithness, is now being decommissioned by Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd (DSRL), on behalf the UK Government’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).
Dounreay, nuclear decommissioning, nuclear heritage, industrial heritage, nuclear history.