For more than 70 years, the site that Birchwood Park currently occupies has been the home of nuclear innovation in the UK. Dating back to the 1950’s, the site’s status as a leading hub for nuclear development began when the UK Government converted a former ordnance factory into the base of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA).
Now, in 2023, Birchwood Park is firmly established as the UK’s centre for innovation in the science and nuclear industry. Bringing together global powerhouses of the industry, the Park’s commitment to creating cutting-edge facilities capable of housing and developing new nuclear technologies has formed the largest cluster of nuclear organisations in UK.
As the Park’s nuclear hub is positioned at the forefront of the UK’s new nuclear programme, we boast a roster of both public and private sector nuclear-based organisations that span in all areas of this revolutionary industry.
Therefore, we wanted to showcase some of our occupiers that are leading the way for the next generation of nuclear research and development now and into the future.
In 2022, the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (Nuclear AMRC) relocated to the Park due to its pioneering facilities which make the location a prime destination for nuclear investment.
Led by industry experts to help UK companies secure work across the nuclear sector in new build, operations and decommissioning, the Nuclear AMRC is adapting advanced manufacturing techniques used in shipbuilding, aerospace and other sectors for use across the nuclear sector.
Hosted by member company Jacobs, the Nuclear AMRC’s facilities include a new modular manufacturing R&D centre here at the Park.
At the time of the organisation’s move, Birchwood Park Commercial Director Martin O’Rourke, commented: “We’re so pleased the Nuclear AMRC is now settling in at Jacobs, located on the Park. We strongly believe that our pioneering facilities make the Park a prime destination for nuclear investment, which is most evident through the success of our nuclear hub. This is something we’re really proud of and excited to expand even further.”
Technical and professional services company Jacobs is the largest occupier at the Park, employing over 750 scientists, project managers, engineers, and consultants.
With engineering design centres, materials testing laboratories, workshops, and office space at Bridgewater Place, 601 Faraday Street, Walton House, Newton House and Lovell House, Jacobs is a leader in nuclear energy, offering expertise in reactor technology, conceptual design and engineering.
As well as supporting the UK’s existing power stations and helping to build Hinkley Point C, Jacobs’ engineers are central to the UK’s quest for new nuclear technologies to ensure greater energy security.
The company has supported the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority’s fusion power research since the 1980s and is providing cutting-edge technical support for several companies developing new modular reactors.
Jacobs’ hosting of Nuclear AMRC’s modular manufacturing R&D centre in Birchwood is part of that desire to stay at the forefront of the nuclear industry.
Decommissioning legacy facilities and safe handling and storage of radioactive waste are vital in ensuring public acceptance of nuclear power. Here too, Jacobs is a leader internationally, working at some of the most challenging sites in the world including Chornobyl and Fukushima.
National Nuclear Laboratory
The government-owned but operationally independent nuclear services technology provider, National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) relocated its head office to Birchwood’s flagship office building Chadwick House back in 2009.
Offering unrivalled expertise in nuclear science and technology to benefit society, NNL covers the whole of the nuclear fuel cycle and develops a wide range of services, including research and development, technical consulting, and training through its unique set of skills, facilities and capabilities.
Focusing on the four core focus areas of Clean Energy, Environmental Restoration, Health and Nuclear Medicine and Security and Non-Proliferation, NNL uses its Chadwick House offices as the hub for all corporate operations alongside its four world-leading laboratories in North West England.
Birchwood Park nuclear cluster
As our nuclear cluster continue to grow, attracting some of the most prominent global companies and highly skilled individuals, so will our own pursuit to provide pioneering, community-led workplace environment that caters for the innovative and collaborative spaces required to enable our occupiers to maximise their full potential.
Our strategic approach to workplace wellbeing has enabled the Park to maintain the position as a leader in all areas of the nuclear industry, including nuclear decommissioning, new build projects, and research and development not only for the present year but also for the future.