Coryton Refinery

Coryton Refinery

Coordinates: 51°30′44″N 0°30′41″E / 51.5122°N 0.5113°E / 51.5122; 0.5113

Coryton 191007.jpg
Coryton is located in Essex

 Coryton shown within Essex
OS grid reference TQ745825
Unitary authority Thurrock
Ceremonial county Essex
Region East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district SS17
Dialling code 01375
Police Essex
Fire Essex
Ambulance East of England
EU Parliament East of England
UK Parliament Basildon
List of places: UK • England • Essex

Coryton Refinery is an oil refinery in Essex, England, situated on the estuary of the River Thames some 28 miles (45 km) from the centre of London.

The refinery is located between Shell Haven Creek and Hole Haven Creek, which separates Canvey Island from the mainland.

It is a part of the Port of London and is the last of the three major refineries on the Thames Estuary to remain in operation. Output is delivered via the UKOP pipeline, road and rail.

There is also a 753 MW gas-fired power station, opened in 2002 and run by Coryton Energy Co Ltd, part of Intergen.



In 1895 the ammunition firm Kynochs built an explosives factory at the site. This opened in 1897, with an estate for employees called Kynochtown. Products included cordite, guncotton, gunpowder, and cartridges.[1] Kynochs also built the Corringham Light Railway (CLR), with a passenger branch from the works to Corringham and a goods branch to the LT&SR at Thames Haven. The Kynoch works closed in 1919. The site and CLR were taken over by coal merchants Cory Brothers Ltd of Cardiff to build an oil storage depot, with Kynochtown being renamed Coryton. Sources differ as to whether Corys, who sold a well known brand of petrol, Corys' Motor Spirit, also built a refinery at the site.

In 1950 Coryton, along with the CLR, was sold to the American Vacuum Oil Company, later called Mobil. The CLR to Corringham was closed, but the branch to the former LT&SR at Thames Haven was upgraded to main line standards. A new refinery came on stream in 1953. Coryton village was demolished and absorbed into the refinery site in the 1970s.

Coryton was operated by BP from 1996, when Mobil's fuels operations in Europe were placed into a joint venture with BP. Following the 1999 merger of Mobil with Exxon, the remaining interest in the refinery was sold to BP in 2000. In 2007 the plant was sold by BP to Petroplus for £714.6m (around $1.4 billion).

A major fire occurred at the facility on 31 October 2007 [2]. Despite the scale of the blast which was reported to cause buildings to shake 14 miles (23 km) away,[3] there were no physical injuries and only partial disruption to the refinery.

Process Units

These are the main operating units at Coryton Refinery:

Distillation unit, Vacuum distillation, Fluid catalytic cracker, Catalytic reformer, Hydro desulpherisation units, Gas recovery unit Isomerisation unit, Alkylation unit.


Crude oil is received from tankers of up to 250,000 metric tons deadweight (DWT). In 2005 BP acquired a fleet of three new 32 m tugs for towing, mooring, fire-fighting and pollution control at the plant. They are named 'Corringham', 'Stanford' and 'Castle Point' after nearby locations.

Refining capacity: 10 million tonnes per year

  • Product output
  • petrol 3.6 million tonnes
  • diesel 2.7 million tonnes
  • kerosene/jet fuel 1.1 million tonnes
  • LPG 0.2 million tonnes
  • Fuel oil 1.7 million tonnes
  • Bitumen 0.3 million tonnes

See also


  1. ^ Henry W. Macrosty. (1907). The Trust Movement In British Industry. The Chemical Industries. (p. 166). Batoche Books.
  2. ^ Aislinn Simpson. (2007-11-01). Fire crews control oil refinery blaze. The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  3. ^ BBC News. (2007-11-01). England | Essex | Inquiry into refinery fire begins. Retrieved 2008-04-11.

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

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