The abandoned Babcock & Wilcox plant of Sestao
The abandoned Babcock & Wilcox plant of Sestao

The abandoned Babcock & Wilcox plant of Sestao

The abandoned Babcock & Wilcox plant of Sestao

The former railway plant in the Galindo valley

Sestao (Vizcaya), Spain

The history of the Babcock & Wilcox in the Galindo valley began during the First World War when the difficulties of the Compañía de los Caminos de Hierro del Norte de España will result in the sale of the plant to the Babcock & Wilcox company, today specializing in energy technologies.

Located in Sestao, near Bilbao, the industrial complex is specialized in the manufacture and repair of industrial locomotives. Among the contracts awarded to the company, Babcock & Wilcox is responsible for the repair of 173 locomotives damaged during the Civil War that divided the country for more than three years. It will also be the last company in Spain to build steam locomotives (1961).

While more than 5,250 employees was working there at its peak in 1976, the oil crisis, which began in the U.S. in 1971, will join Spain at the end of the decade and will cause the beginning of the end of the huge Babcock Wilcox industrial complex in Sestao.

The central government will try somehow to save an industry that was the heart of one of the most important sectors of the region, but unfortunately, the site will be closed in 1992.

The Babcock & Wilcox around the world

While its headquarters are located in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, the Babcock & Wilcox still operates several plants around the world including Canada, China, Denmark, Sweden, Mexico, India and many more. More than 12,000 people work for the company. Founded in 1867 by Stephen Wilcox and George Babcock, the company has also left behind numerous restructuring plans that resulted by several abandoned factories, including one in Montreal that you can visit on Urbex Playground.

Related content

Northern View
Montréal, Quebec (Canada)

Used as a snow dump, the site of the former Francon quarry (now known as the Saint-Michel quarry) looks like a huge crater of greenery in the heart of Montreal. This area covers approximately 20% (17% to be exact) of the district of Saint-Michel...

Cayadutta Tanning
Gloversville, New York (United States)

Located in Gloversville near Albany NY, this abandoned factory is ready to crumble. Before 1870, Gloversville was a small village called Stump City. When it became an incorporated village in 1853, the name was changed to Gloversville due to the...

The Park lane café
Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec (Canada)

The place is big, very big. While the building is nearly 200,000 square feet, the site, meanwhile, is over than 430,000 square feet in an agricultural area of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu. For those interested, the site is for sale and the current...

The abandoned Stelfil plant in Lachine
Lachine, Quebec (Canada)

Victim of the globalization of markets, the history of Stelfil Ltd. has suddenly stopped on March 28, 2008 for the factory and its hundred employees. The company has been decorated in 2002 in the Great manufacturing company category by the...