Orsted talks Hornsea One, Two and Three as major exhibition opens in Grimsby

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 11 Jul 2018

​GRIMSBY is being given a major preview of the wind farms that will provide the platform from which to  lead the world in offshore energy provision.

Danish giant Orsted has taken over the town hall to host a significant exhibition that is underlining the sheer scale of the renewables revolution that is now being realised.  

A total of 500 jobs are being created by the company in Grimsby as it smashes record after record, leading a cluster that has been a decade in the development.

Duncan Clark, Orsted's programme director for Hornsea Project One and Hornsea Project Two addressing stakeholders at a pre-exhibition reception at Grimsby Town Hall.

​Duncan Clark, Orsted’s programme director for the twin farms, told how together will add more than 2.5GW of installed capacity to Grimsby’s total, taking the figure to 5GW once Innogy’s Triton Knoll is confirmed. Almost slipping into Roy Castle’s Record Breakers role on stage in The Assembly Rooms, Mr Clark said: “We are the world leader in offshore wind and the UK is the world’s leading market for offshore wind. At the moment the world’s largest wind farm in the UK, London Array, very soon Orsted will take that record with a project in the Irish Sea, then in a year or so’s time, Hornsea Project One will take that record. Then two-and-a-half years latter, Hornsea Project Two should take that record. 

“We are here in the largest market, we are in this cluster around the Humber where we have world-leading projects.”

He explained how a quarter of a century of development, from adopted onshore turbines to dedicated offshore delivery has progressed, and with two wind farms built and running and a further operational farm taken on out of Grimsby, Mr Clark said: “The UK is a major platform, and with the industry and technology growing, we are at a tipping point with offshore wind moving from being a specialist, northern European thing, to truly global.”

Hornsea Project One in numbers.

Hornsea Project One is currently on a summer build-out break, with 60 of the 174 monopiles and transition pieces – the element holding the turbine to the seabed – now in place, as well as the four jacket foundations to hold the substations and reactive compensation unit.

“It covers 400 sq km, it is an enormous area of sea – the scale is incredible, it is a massive undertaking,” Mr Clark reflected, in his address to a reception held ahead of the exhibition’s public launch.

“Hornsea Project Two in many ways is very similar, a sister project that sits in the same area, to the north and west. The cables will run along the same cable corridor, parallel to it.”

It will use 8MW turbines, rather than 7MW, with one giant substation weighing 7,000 tonnes, rather than the three smaller units that are semi-installed now on Project One. That will see turbine installation start in January, completing within 2019, and is envisaged to be fully operational come early 2020.  

Read more: An ‘East of England’ renewables powerhouse emerges as organisations unite

Project Two was the wind farm that shocked even industry observers when it came in at £57.54 per MwH in last September’s successful auction, making it competitive with gas for generation. It immediately brought the final investment decision and should be fully commissioned by 2022, with a geotechnical and geophysical campaign underway now in the field to “find out what we need to know about the seabed and where we will be working.”

As confirmed recently, Siemens Gamesa will supply the “new model 8MW turbine with larger blades”. Mr Clark said: “We plan for Hornsea Project Two to be the best value offshore wind farm in the world as well as the biggest.

“Bigger is better for the cost of electricity” he said. “Siemens Gamesa is very important for Hull, and very important for us as we are moving in to the next iteration of the blades. These will come from the facility.”

From left are, Ray Oxby, leader of NELC, Madam Mayor of North East Lincolnshire Councillor Hazel Chase, Duncan Clarke, project director Orsted, Natasha Nanuck, organiser of the event, stake holder and advisor.

Acknowledging the works on the onshore cable route, which skirts North East Lincolnshire to join the National Grid at North Killingholme, he added: “We appreciate the warm welcome we have had from all the people here, from landowners we work with and the people in the community. We are keen to be part of the community, and our East Coast Community Fund is making available £465,000 every year.”

Looking further ahead, Mr Clark, who had earlier said the Humber could benefit from the further opening up of the seabed for development by The Crown Estate, added: “There will be more in the future. We have recently put in an application for Hornsea Project Three. If it achieves its consent, if we get the Government contract to build it, it will be the biggest in the world again, twice the size of Hornsea Project One. Fingers’ crossed, we are looking forward to that one.” 

Exhibition stands took visitors through different elements of the projects, from video of the cable laying to a virtual reality headset taking the wearer to the top of the a turbine. Scale models of installation vessels, methods and the service operation vessel, the Grimsby-registered 80-metre Edda Passat were also on display. It sails fortnightly from the £10 million Royal Dock East Coast Hub to Race Bank, and will be joined by Edda Mistral, complete with heli-deck, for Hornsea. 

Read more: Hull's biggest blade order yet is signed off as Orsted partners with Siemens Gamesa

Fresh from signing up for the Greater Grimsby Town Deal, with Orsted a key partner, Cllr Ray Oxby, leader of North East Lincolnshire Council, said: “This is a great example of how we are all in it for the area. We want to see young people get the jobs, the skills and education, we want to see the investment coming and to support the supply chain in servicing these wind farms. We are pro-business and it was very important Madam Mayor Hazel Chase and I as leader showed our support to Orsted. The company’s commitment should not be underestimated and it is good to hear plans for Hornsea Project Three, which is going to double the capability of Hornsea Project One. We are major players, here in Grimsby, which underlines our reputation as a can-do place for business.”

He added that the benefit would be felt through the economy, from cafe owners to shopkeepers. “It is a win-wind for North East Lincolnshire,” he added.

For Kishor Tailor, Humber Local Enterprise Partnership chief executive, the exhibition brought home the sheer size of the projects. He was a senior figure of one of several organisations represented, along with Team Humber Marine Alliance and Grimsby Renewables Partnership, with respective chairs Mark O’Reilly and Andy Goudie present. 

“I think people can now appreciate the scale of the operation by coming to an event like this,” Mr Tailor said. “Also, the opportunity, the jobs and the skills base, it shows this is happening on our doorstep, and we have got to capture the full benefit for the local community, whether it is jobs or the supply chain, we need to make sure more people get jobs and make sure that local companies value and get benefits from supplying.” 

The exhibition will take place today (Wednesday July 11) from 11am to 6.30pm at The Assembly Room in Grimsby Town Hall.

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