Contributed by SuffolkWire
27/08/2020 - SuffolkWire
LEPs say multi-billion-pound boost from new nuclear power stations has the potential to bring thousands of jobs and opportunities to local businesses in East Anglia.
The New Anglia, Cumbria and The Heart of the South West LEPs represent local authorities and businesses in regions which are key to the future of the UK’s nuclear industry.
In the South West, Hinkley Point C has created more than 10,000 job opportunities, a new training academy and trained 664 apprentices. The impact locally has been transformative, with 40% of the workforce being recruited from the local area. Almost 1000 companies across the South West have benefitted already, with £1.7 billion spent to date, which is having a marked, positive impact on communities and business.
Hinkley Point C is providing a unique opportunity for UK suppliers to develop their expertise in high quality nuclear construction. The LEPs, alongside the Nuclear Business Clusters, are working together to make sure the capability, knowledge and skills learned at Hinkley Point C are transferred through the new nuclear pipeline. They are working with businesses to ensure visibility of opportunities and bringing together those other key economic institutions that underpin economic growth from skills, academia and business.
Local business leaders in the East of England and Cumbria are learning from the South West, so that they are well set up to benefit if proposed projects at Sizewell C in Suffolk and Moorside in Cumbria go ahead. At Sizewell C, it is estimated that £300 million worth of work could be awarded to British companies in the coming year alone, presenting a major opportunity for the East of England local building supply trade.
Doug Field, Chair of the New Anglia LEP said: “Our ambition is to create 88,000 new jobs and 30,000 successful new businesses as part of the Economic Strategy for Norfolk and Suffolk. We can see the economic benefits that the Hinkley Point C project has brought, and we are listening closely to our colleagues in other LEPs to maximise the potential that a stimulus this type of project would bring to the region.”
In Cumbria, plans for the Moorside Clean Energy Hub, set out a bold ambition to link the proposed nuclear plants to other energy technologies, such as renewables and green hydrogen.
Rebecca Weston, Chair of the Cumbria LEP’s Clean Energy Panel said, “We expect Moorside to be an engine for clean growth in Cumbria, helping the region to fulfil its potential and to build powerful communities through the long-lived, high value careers which the Nuclear industry provides. If progressed, it will be a landmark project for the UK as a leading Net Zero nation, as well as securing a pipeline of jobs in green energy in this region for decades to come.”
Karl Tucker, Chair of The Heart of the South West LEP said, “We’ve helped hundreds of businesses in the South West to level up and prepare for Hinkley Point C, and that is doing wonders for the prosperity of our region. That is why we are so excited by this collaboration. As part of our commitment, we are transitioning our Nuclear Skills workforce development activity over to the East of England to ensure the smooth transition of knowledge and expertise to Sizewell C and helping to reduce construction costs by 20% through the innovative replication strategy. Businesses from the South West are now in a great position to take advantage of the new nuclear pipeline, and we’re with them every step of the way.”
Cameron Gilmour, Spokesperson for the Sizewell C Consortium welcomed the collaboration, saying: “The LEPs are a critical part of ensuring that local businesses are ready and prepared for Sizewell C and Moorside, and that communities are built back stronger through high quality jobs. Our members represent over 50,000 careers, right across the UK.
“We know that companies like Prior Power Solutions in East Anglia see Sizewell C as a massive opportunity. They are looking at the prospect of supplying low emission plant to the project; completely transforming their business and enabling them to expand by 30% and take on 25 additional people from the region. In the South West; AMS Nuclear Engineering, an SME specialising in instrumentation systems and environmental sampling are looking to utilise their extensive experience working with the Hinkley Point power stations to support the build of Sizewell C, securing the growth and stability of its’ specialist engineers for years to come. And in Cumbria, an area with a rich Nuclear heritage, a clear pipeline to Moorside would allow businesses to grow strongly and sustainably building the skills and expertise required to deliver expertly, every time.”
Companies who want to show their support for the Sizewell C project can join the Sizewell C Consortium today by visiting www.sizewellcconsortium.com
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