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Landmark 400ft chimney brought down with a bang

Photo: Skynamite

The Westbury cement works chimney has been demolished, marking the symbolic end of cement production in the town.

The 400ft structure was brought down at 7am this morning and over 2000 people turned out to watch.

The former Blue Circle cement factory was mothballed in 2009, rendering the chimney redundant and potentially unsafe.

Here's the moment it came down (video courtesy of Skynamite):

The cement works are about a mile to the north east of Westbury. Credit: Skynamite

The controlled explosion button was pressed by nine-year-old Lily Sargent who had won a local school competition to draw a picture of the chimney.

Members of the public were not allowed onto the factory site but many viewed the demolition from the White Horse Hill, where Trowbridge Town Crier Trevor Heeks provided a countdown.

The demolished chimney. Credit: Skynamite

The chimney was designed to fall onto neighbouring trees during demolition, rather than onto the adjacent railway. 200 detonators were used.

Tarmac has brought the factory site and will use it for cement distribution by rail and road, but all cement production has finished and two-thirds of the factory will be demolished.

Watch a full report from Caron Bell: