Dir. Chu-Li Shewring & Adam Gutch / 2022 / 26 mins
With its giant 200 metre chimney, Fawley power station was a classic Brutalist structure built on the edge of the New Forest and Solent between 1964 and 1971. The first of its kind – oil fuelled and computer-controlled – it was a brooding but often admired presence within an area of outstanding natural beauty.
Mixing interviews, archive and present-day documentary, this film explores Fawley’s history and demolition through playful and profound discussion of themes of ‘power’, nature, and the environment. It addresses the deep psychological and emotional role architecture plays in our surroundings and asks, “What is lost when a building disappears?” Or simply, “Does a building have a spirit?”
Carefully combining speech, sound and image fragments, the film brings together disparate reminiscences and contemporary events through a tapestry of intimate voices – local people who worked at the power station and lived in the shadow of the chimney.
Decommissioning the 20th Century / Keele University
Arts and Humanities Research Council
Co-Produced by Urban Wilderness