The search for oil in Dorset started in 1935. Between 1958 and 1980 six wells were drilled in Kimmeridge Bay area. The second drilling B2, later renamed K1, was made in 1959 and both oil and gas were discovered.
The Kimmeridge K1 well site, is a small site, with a single beam pump or “nodding donkey” which has been pumping continually since 1961. The well once produced 350 barrels per day, but currently yields around 65 barrels per day the Jurassic strata that lies around 350 metres (1,150 ft) below the cliff.
The oil is transported by tanker to Wytch Farm, from where it is piped to the storage tanks at Hamble-le-Rice on Southampton Water before being shipped to the main refinery.Return to previous page