The Cumbrian skyline has changed forever after a three-year project at the Sellafield nuclear site was completed.

Clean-up teams have removed the huge diffuser at the top of the 125-metre Windscale Pile Chimney on the site – a block which gave the chimney its distinctive top-heavy appearance.

The diffuser has taken three years of work to dismantle and clear, having been in place for nearly 70 years.

Geoff Carver, Sellafield Ltd project manager, said: “I'm delighted to have reached this point.

"Removing the seismic risk is a huge achievement.

“This is a clear demonstration of progress towards our purpose of delivering a clean and safe environment for future generations.

“Many people have contributed to this success.

“Sellafield Ltd employees have worked closely with their colleagues from our partners ADAPT, Doosan, Mammoet, KDC, Kaefer, the Design Services Alliance, and Nuvia.”

The diffuser had to be cut up in-situ, more than 100 metres above ground.

Sections were then transported separately down to the ground.

It required 200 moves to clear the entire block.

Work is now taking place to remove a metal frame platform and reduce the access shaft.