Appetite clear for offshore wind sector deal as 450 delegates descend on event

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 20 Nov 2018

More than 450 delegates from hundreds of British companies have underlined their desire to be part of the burgeoning offshore wind sector.

The huge turn-out was welcomed by those behind what will be yet another world-leading project, Hornsea Project Two.

To be built off the Humber and operated from Grimsby, it is an engineering feat incomparable in nature.

Top tier suppliers joined globe-leading giant Ørsted last week, using the inspiring Magna Science Adventure Centre in South Yorkshire as the central location to bring together expertise and interest from all parts of the country. 

This week industry steps up the pressure for a much-hinted at sector deal – with the annual Offshore Wind Week underway and the event highlighting how appetite is clear. 

Grimsby is on target to operate and maintain 8GW of installed capacity as the UK's leading service hub, with hundreds now directly employed on the port, and hundreds more supporting it. 

Hull’s Siemens plant, also employing hundreds, is supplying blades to farms emerging around the UK and beyond.

Matthew Wright, managing director of Ørsted UK, has joined trade body Renewable UK to highlight the role played, and the need for such a sector-based approach. He said: “The UK has much to celebrate when it comes to the success of the offshore wind industry. Through innovation and collaborative partnerships we have grown this fantastic technology from its infancy to now having the largest capacity by far, of any country in the world. Not only that, Government policy has enabled UK projects to dramatically reduce in cost, such that generating electricity from this natural resource now costs no more than using fossil fuels.

“I am proud to be part of this industry, and to work for a company that is truly pioneering; breaking records for both cost and clean electricity generation. But whilst we reflect and take a moment to celebrate our successes, we must also recognise there is still more to do.

“The global market is set to reach £30 billion annually by 2030, and with an offshore wind sector deal, UK export value could grow five-fold. We need to be ready to ensure the UK supply chain benefits not just from UK projects, but seizes opportunities from this global growth. This is a main focus for both us at Ørsted, and the industry right now.”

Read more: £60m auction and a Sector Deal before Christmas - Energy Minister

The Humber has been a focus for trade missions and learning visits from east and west, as officials from Taiwan to Massachusetts take in the set-up, from Green Port Hull to the early-stage Port of Grimsby East bases, and now the larger-scale East Coast Hub, delivered by Ørsted, and home to two state-of-the-art service operation vessels.

As reported, the Offshore Wind Industry Council has appointed ex-McLaren Group chief executive Martin Whitmarsh to undertake a full review of its supply chain, with Ørsted actively trying to widen it.

Last week saw Balfour Beatty, Siemens Gamesa, ABB and VolkerInfra, explain how UK companies can sign up to get involved in Hornsea Project Two, with onshore construction underway and completion set for 2022.

Duncan Clark, programme director for both it and ‘little sister’ Hornsea Project One - which will hold the world’s largest title for a couple of years once it completes in 2020 - said: “The opportunities offshore wind can offer UK companies are tremendous, and as we build these huge projects in UK waters, we must ensure UK companies are aware of what’s on offer, and ready to deliver. As the industry has grown, we’ve seen companies diversifying from other industries, as well as investment in new facilities purely to service the sector’s growing supply chain needs.

“We also work closely with our first tier contractors to support them in their engagement with local companies and it was great to see this in practice at last week’s event. We’ve had really positive feedback and hope to follow up with some ‘Meet the Buyer’ events with our first tier suppliers in the new year.”

In the past five years alone, Ørsted has placed major contracts with nearly 100 different UK companies to help build and maintain our offshore wind farms. The majority of these contracts have a value of over £1 million and more than 75 per cent of these companies have received multiple contracts.

Did you miss the event? If you are a UK supplier looking to register your interest in Hornsea Project Two you can sign up for further information here.

Offshore wind farms operated and maintained from Grimsby.
Name / Developer Turbines  Capacity

Cumulative Total  (Turbines / MW) 

Lynn & Inner Dowsing - Centrica 54 x Siemens 3.6MW 194 2008 54 / 194
Lincs - Centrica 75 x Siemens 3.6MW 270 2013 129 / 464
Westermost Rough - Orsted 35 x Siemens 5MW 210 2015 164 / 674
Humber Gateway - E.on 73 x MHI Vestas 3MW 219 2015 237 / 893
Race Bank - Orsted 91 x Siemens 6.3MW 573 2018 328 / 1,466
Under construction
Hornsea Project One - Orsted 174 x Siemens 7MW 1,218 2020 502 / 2,684
Triton Knoll - Innogy 90 x MHI Vestas 9.5MW 860 2021 592 / 3,544
Hornsea Project Two - Orsted 165 x Siemens 8.4MW 1,386 2022 757 / 4,930
In development
Hornsea Project Three - Orsted 300* 2,400* 1,057 / 7.330
Race Bank Extension - Orsted 91* 573* 1,148 / 7,903
*Indicative only

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