ON THIS DAY: 2008: Tinsley Towers are blown up – PICTURES AND VIDEO
They were an iconic part of Sheffield's skyline for 70 years – but on this day eight years ago, the Tinsley Towers came crashing down in a spectacular explosion.
Built in 1938, the towers were once used as part of the Blackburn Meadows power station and were a gateway to the city for thousands of motorists.
The power station, built to support Sheffield’s steel industry in 1921, closed in 1980.
QUIZ: Can you name these Sheffield landmarks?
The towers could not be easily demolished, and instead were left standing, unused, alongside the Tinsley Viaduct, for another 28 years.
In that time, they became a bit of a Sheffield landmark – even featuring in the 1997 worldwide movie smash The Full Monty, making them a bit of an unlikely attraction for film fans from around the globe.
They were even the site of an unusual wedding.
Keith and Claire Clarkson’s first date was in Tinsley in the 1980s, when Keith was undertaking research on the wildlife around the derelict area.
When they married in 1986, the pair decided to use the towers for a backdrop in a snap of their big day.
Some 20 years later, when they learned of the towers’ impending demolition, they returned to the site and asked the same photographer, Mike Bellwood, to take an updated shot of the couple in front of the towers for their 20th anniversary, in 2006.
The towers were also used as part of filming for BBC docu-drama Threads, released in 1984, which depicted what might have happened if Sheffield was hit by a nuclear missile – one scene showed the Tinsley Viaduct being blown up.
Then, in 2008, the towers were blown up for real.
Despite a public campaign to save the towers, including ideas to transform them into other uses, including an art installation and a skate park, the towers were demolished in a controlled explosion on August 24, 2008 – although some of the north tower remained and had to be manually knocked down.
They may be gone, but Sheffielders won’t be forgetting the iconic towers any time soon.
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