Huge South West ‘jobs boost’ being created by Hinkley Point nuclear power station

Thursday 27th September 2018

Thousands of jobs are being created by the ‘Hinkley Point’ project with over £10bn worth of contracts having already been issued - 64% of that total contracts value has been awarded to UK suppliers and the South West region has been given a substantial share and consequent jobs boost. For the full story please read the article below which appeared today in the Western Morning News.

Roger Mundy, Managing Director, Beardsley Theobalds, 27th September 2018

Hinkley Point giving West an ‘enormous jobs boost’

The trade union Unite has praised the Hinkley Point nuclear power station project in Somerset for giving the South West an “enormous jobs boost”.

As the project moves into its third year the union spoke in support of the project – which has come under fire from some politicians in the green movement.

French energy company EDF is constructing the £18 billion Somerset plant which is due to be completed by 2025.

Unite national officer for energy Peter McIntosh said: “This project is continuing to make a significant and positive economic impact within the UK and, in particular, in the south west where is has been an enormous jobs generator.

“It is creating thousands of highly skilled construction jobs and EDF has already started to deliver on its commitments with over 250 apprenticeships. Once it starts operating, it will employ a 900-strong workforce.

“More than £10 billion of contracts have already been awarded with 64% of the total value of the contracts awarded to UK suppliers.

“The country must build on what has been achieved and secure the benefits of replication and innovation, which will substantially bring down the cost of follow-on ‘new nuclear’ build projects.

“It would be a massive missed opportunity if the planned projects at Sizewell C in Suffolk and Bradwell B in Essex are not given the go ahead. Support should also be made available to Wylfa B in Anglesey and the troubled Moorside project in Cumbria.

“Unite will continue to campaign strongly to ensure that the necessary investment in ‘new nuclear’, as well as other carbon-neutral energy sources, takes place.

“The message is clear – government cash is needed for all these projects to make them come to fruition. Strong and sustained government sponsorship, including in some cases, direct government funding, will be necessary.”

Unite regional coordinating officer for the South West Matt Tipper said: “As a result of Hinkley Point, the region has seen major benefits to its economy and great opportunities for workers to train in skilled craft roles.”

EDF is building Hinkley Point, with a stake from Chinese state-owned investor CGN. Last week one of Devon’s biggest engineering firms SC Group, based at Dunkeswell, said they were sharing in the £1.3bn worth of contracts won by South West businesses at the site.

Stuart Ship, lead for Special Projects at SC innovation, told the Western Morning News the company had designed and tested the water filtration and cooling systems at the power station and provided engineering advice for the construction of the jetty, being built by its sister company Blackhill Engineering.

Mr Ship sounded a note of caution. He said: “The hope with Hinkley was that lots of local companies would benefit. We have secured good jobs from it but there have been lots of delays and that means contracts are not being released. We are confident it will happen, but no one knows when.”