55 Years of Nuclear: Providing for Suffolk for 3 Generations

By Marjorie Barnes | Published on 8 April 2022 | 4 min read

Left to right;
Megan Hopkins,
an engineer gaining experience at Sizewell B before joining Sizewell C.
Rachel Wills, Sizewell B Technician within the Control and Instrumentation team at the power station.
Danny Bailey, worked at Sizewell A and has just retired as a maintenance manager from Sizewell B.

Why did you move into the nuclear sector?
Rachel: The opportunity arose to work at Sizewell B through an apprenticeship. This meant that I could enter the working world with no student loans and with a clearly defined career path for a job I knew I would enjoy.
Megan: I never imagined myself working at a power station, but the nuclear sector is a really interesting place to be. I visited Heysham 2 with my university and later took the opportunity to join the station as an Industrial Placement. I knew I wanted to stay in the industry, so now I live in Suffolk working on the new phase of nuclear with Sizewell B and Sizewell C.
Danny: I followed in my father’s footsteps who was an operator at the Sizewell A power plant. I remember thinking when I was considering the job that the industry offered a job for life and a secure place to work with a good income.

So Sizewell has played a large family role for you Danny?
Danny: Yes definitely, lots of my relatives have been part of Sizewell’s legacy. Across the years my dad, brother and uncle all worked at Sizewell A. This makes it hard to believe that it has been 55 years since it first opened!

Could you tell me a little bit your future within the company?
Danny: I actually retired last week! I joined Sizewell A as a Craft Apprentice and moved across to the Sizewell B team as an Enhanced Craftsman in 1990 and has carried out several roles within the station. Most recently I was a Maintenance Manager at Sizewell B.

What do you enjoy about working in nuclear?
Rachel: I enjoy working within a large team of other technicians and I am still learning new things. I do not think a desk-based job would have suited me as I get more satisfaction from working on the equipment in the power station.
Megan: I enjoy the variety of work that I can be involved with and that I am constantly learning. I really enjoy the hands on stuff and being out on plant. During the last outage I became very well acquainted with the inside of the reactor building. I couldn’t imagine doing a normal desk job now!
Danny: Stability is the word that comes to mind. I have been lucky enough to have numerous jobs across two power stations both Sizewell A and B. Not only does nuclear provide thousands of jobs but these positions are there for a lifetime, I have spent my whole career in nuclear.

How does Sizewell add to the local community?
Danny: Working at Sizewell shows people that they don’t have to leave rural Suffolk to enjoy a long-term rewarding career.
Rachel: The plants all play an important role in bringing jobs to the local community. However, it goes beyond jobs and into the education system. With the abundance of jobs provided in the future by the plants it is encouraging to see more local children studying STEM subjects.
Megan: The entire Sizewell site provides a huge variety of stable jobs for the local community. Sizewell C is creating opportunities for young people through their links with local colleges and is creating new and larger habitats for local wildlife. Sizewell has a legacy of providing low carbon energy from within Suffolk, which will continue long into the future.


Tagged with: Anniversary, Heritage, Sizewell B
Posted by Marjorie Barnes

The Sizewell C comms team brings you news, updates, blogs and information on the Sizewell C project.