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Background: Why is Brent Delta topside coming to Teesside?

The Brent field has produced 10% of all North Sea oil and gas since 1976 Photo: PA

The Brent Delta topside is expected in Hartlepool later on Tuesday as part of plans to decommission the platform.

Oil company Shell sought approval to dismantle one of Britain's oldest and biggest oil platforms back in February 2015.

At its peak in 1982, the Brent field, in Britain's North Sea basin, produced more than half a million barrels a day - enough to provide energy for about half of UK homes that year.

Brent Delta ceased production in 2011 and Brent Alpha and Bravo stopped in November. Production from the field continues through Brent Charlie.

But after several years of assessing alternative uses for the disused platforms, Shell decided decommissioning was the best way forward.

Removing the 500 offshore installations and 10,000 kilometres of pipelines is expected to cost £10.4 billion pounds by 2022, according to industry estimates.

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