The Minister visited Energy Central last week to learn about its rapid development into one of the UK’s leading offshore energy support facilities and took a tour of its two key features including – the world leading renewables test facilities at the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult and the £30m quayside development project taking place at Northumberland Energy Park.
Energy Central is a unique partnership between Advance Northumberland, the Port of Blyth, Northumberland County Council, and the ORE Catapult, providing an unrivalled combination of services and opportunities for offshore businesses seeking to locate invest and grow in a fully established port environment.
Recognised as a strategic UK port development opportunity, the flagship Northumberland Energy Park site is primed to capitalise on offshore energy projects in the North Sea and beyond. The investment being made by the public sector will bring a significant employment site back into economic use, creating new jobs and further investment to Blyth, boosting the local and regional economy.
Located on the Blyth Estuary, Energy Central is a fully operational hub made up of world-leading organisations, skills and infrastructure, making it one of Europe’s outstanding investment destinations for those operating in the oil and gas, offshore renewable energy, subsea industries.
During her visit Maritime Minister Nusrat Ghani said: “I am delighted to have made my first visit to the Port of Blyth.
“The maritime industry is at the heart of the UK’s economy. The Port of Blyth is not only one of our key ports as a global trading nation, but also a fantastic example of the thriving offshore wind sector that is boosting renewable energy across the UK.
“Our Clean Maritime Plan outlines an ambitious vision for the industry and I was delighted to meet some of the port’s brilliant staff to see the wider work being done to reduce emissions, improve air quality and tackle climate change.”
Martin Lawlor, Chief Executive of Port of Blyth, said: “We’re delighted that the Minister joined us to see for herself everything that Blyth has to offer in terms of growth, jobs and opportunities, at both a local and national level.”
“Our Energy Central partnership with the County Council, Advance Northumberland and the ORE Catapult, ensures that we’re seen by the offshore energy sector as one of the UK’s most dynamic port destinations for major projects, innovation and investment. We’d like to thank the Minister for visiting and taking such an interest in our development.”
Cllr Richard Wearmouth, Chair of Advance Northumberland said: “We are thrilled that the minister could visit and see first-hand the redevelopment of this key strategic site in the county. The investment into the infrastructure works is a giant leap for Blyth putting Energy Central on the map for the offshore industry and building upon the Port of Blyth successes”.
The project received £4,440,736 from the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). The Local Growth Deal is supporting major capital investments to promote innovation, economic and skills infrastructure and sustainable transport as part of the North East Growth Deal.