Norfolk County Council (NCC) have recently announced £6 million of funding to deliver an offshore energy Operations and Maintenance (O&M) campus at the Port of Great Yarmouth.
Working with rejuvenated parts of land owned by Great Yarmouth Borough Council and Peel Ports Great Yarmouth, it is a positive response showing plans for investment within East Anglia and for the Offshore Wind Sector.
The funding is part of an overall £32 million awarded to 13 organisations across Norfolk and Suffolk from the Government’s £900 million ‘Getting Building Fund’ to help deliver jobs, skills and infrastructure as part of the post-pandemic recovery.
The site, which will be located at the entrance of River Yare will have a closer proximity to the Southern North Sea Offshore Energy developments and will reduce O&M costs and maximise efficiency of supporting activities. The site will also be within close proximity to Great Yarmouth’s Outer Harbour, giving clients access to deep water as well as the river port, making this attractive to O&M businesses looking to invest in the new site.
An estimate by NCC suggests that 650 new jobs are expected to be located at the new campus.
The Southern North Sea has the largest concentration of offshore wind projects in the world and majority of them sit within 100 miles of Great Yarmouth Port. The Port has more than 50 years’ experience in delivering major offshore projects and has invested approx. £12 million upgrading its quays, equipment and storage areas to support the industry. With these investments the Port was selected to act as the marshalling harbour for the Galloper Windfarm and more recently the EA1 windfarm that became fully operational this year.
EA1 Windfarm saw 102 turbines being installed in the Southern North Sea with capacity to generating 714MW of Green Power. That is enough to power approx. 630,000 UK homes.
With further Windfarm projects in the pipeline it is estimated that an approx. 6.4GW capacity is still yet to be installed just off UK’s Norfolk and Suffolk coast, powering in the region of 5.6 million UK homes with Green Energy.
Richard Goffin, Port Director at Peel Ports Great Yarmouth, said: “The offshore energy sector is a huge opportunity for the region, with the UK targeting a third of electricity to be produced by offshore wind power by 2030.
At Great Yarmouth, we have continually invested in our facilities to ensure we are well positioned to deliver large-scale offshore projects, whether that’s assisting with the construction and assembly of new larger windfarms or the decommissioning of old oil and gas platforms.
The new funding will allow us to achieve the next milestone of upgrades at the port and ensure Great Yarmouth remains at the forefront of the offshore sector. We are grateful to be one of the two projects awarded funding in Norfolk and will work closely with Norfolk County Council to create a specialised hub for O&M businesses.”
Announced in June, the Government’s Getting Building Fund will support over 300 successful projects in England including housing and infrastructure, creating jobs and supporting economic recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic.
In Norfolk and Suffolk alone, the new projects delivered by the funding will create 1,100 new jobs, safeguard more than 2,900 jobs and unlock a further £85 million of private and public sector investment.
Under the Government’s criteria, projects must be deliverable within 18 months and link with the region’s Economic Strategy, Economic Recovery Restart Plan and the Government’s Recovery Plan.