Grimsby: Europe's Wind Town by 2032

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 1 Feb 2016

OFFSHORE wind's vital role in North East Lincolnshire's future has been presented to the town's industry.

The long-reaching economic strategy for Grimsby sees the offshore wind operations and maintenance hub as Europe's leading centre, in a vision that will involve millions more pounds of investment, opening the port up further with improved access and additional infrastructure.

As development chiefs in Grimsby's Municipal Offices finalise the key document to sit alongside the Local Plan, a flavour of what could come – with a potential 3,000 turbines to serve – was given.

Chris Duffill, inward investment manager at North East Lincolnshire Council, addressed January's meeting of Grimsby Renewables Partnership (GRP). Explaining the ambition, he said: "Quite a lot of this is about physical infrastructure.

"Some of this is about continuing to improve vessel access and berthing, making sure we can bring forward sites with quayside access to facilitate further expansion.

"We know the Humber is leading the way in the UK, and by default, in European terms as well. We need to make sure we make additions to that."

More than £20 million has already been spent on regenerating the port and making it fit for purpose, with two sets of refurbished lock gates, a host of new build bases for the likes of Centrica, Dong Energy and E.on, and several pontoons.

A £1.8 million project to update the town's slipways to aid vessel repair is progressing well, helped partly by funding drawn down by the council.

Grimsby's role in offshore wind operations and maintenance at January 2016
Name Operator Turbines  Megawatts Totals
Now operational
Lynn & Inner Dowsing Centrica 54 x Siemens 3.6MW 194 WTG / MW
Lincs Centrica 75 x Siemens 3.6MW 270 129 / 464
Westermost Rough Dong Energy 35 x Siemens 6MW 210 164 / 674
Humber Gateway E.on 73 x Vestas 3MW 219 237 / 893
Under construction
Race Bank Dong Energy 91 x Siemens 6+MW 580 328 / 1,473
In development
Triton Knoll RWE/Statkraft 288 900 616 / 2,373
Hornsea 1 Dong Energy 174 x Siemens 7MW 1,200 790 / 3,573

Mr Duffill also flashed up other key elements of what success with the strategy could look like by 2032, which included the anticipated 10,000 to 13,000 new homes, as reported, and aspirations for academic improvement.

He said: "We have cemented our critical role in terms of UK seafood processing sector.

"We will also have successfully diversified ports of Grimsby and Immingham, securing development of roll-on and roll-off that will replace coal and some of the other traditional activity that the ports are based on."

He then turned to a scheme very much live and in the present – having just gone through the Cabinet for approval – South Humber Infrastructure Investment Programme (SHIIP).

"We will have delivered SHIIP, one of the biggest investments that the council will ever make, investing in a programme of unlocking new employment sites across the South Humber from Immingham to Grimsby. A programme of over £30 million of investments works, putting in the infrastructure to bring sites forward for investment, working with the private sector."

GRP has a place on the Development and Growth Board, made up of representatives from key sectors operating in the area.

Mr Duffill added: "What we hope is different about this is, through consultation with a whole range of partners, we are identifying the actions we should be getting behind for growth and investment in the area.

"It is driven by key private sector partners and these are the things that people have said are the priorities to invest in or to help secure funding from Government or other places.

"We will have a role in implementing this strategy but a lot will be delivered in partnership, or by other organisations. In come circumstances we need to get out of the way and let the private sector do what it does best, create jobs, wealth and growth. We can put a platform in place for people to get out and do that."

Industry reaction to the economic strategy here.

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