Siemens Gamesa is doubling the size of its offshore blade factory in Hull as part of an expansion that will see 200 additional staff recruited at the site.
The expansion represents an investment of £186m by Siemens Gamesa and is planned to be completed in 2023. The site, which will be able to manufacture next-generation offshore wind turbine blades, will grow to 77,600m2 and expand the workforce to 1,200.
“Since our offshore blade factory opened in Hull in 2016, Siemens Gamesa has proudly served as the catalyst for the powerful growth the area has seen,” said Marc Becker, CEO of the Siemens Gamesa Offshore business Unit. “The rapid development of the offshore wind industry – and continued, strong, long-term support provided by the UK government for offshore wind – has enabled us to power ahead with confidence when making these plans. We’re committed to unlocking the potential of wind energy around the globe, with solutions from Hull playing a vital role.”
Manufacturing of other offshore wind turbine blade types already in the Siemens Gamesa Hull factory pipeline will continue while the expansion is constructed. In total, Siemens Gamesa has an offshore wind power order backlog of €9.4bn.
To help fund the expansion, Siemens Gamesa will receive grant funding from the government’s £160m Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Support scheme, announced as part of the prime minister’s 10 point plan, to further develop manufacturing facilities in the Humber region.
Clark MacFarlane, managing director of Siemens Gamesa UK said: “The UK government has provided strong and consistent support for offshore wind, having committed to a further 30GW installed this decade, three times the current installed capacity. This underlines the commitment the UK government has made since the Offshore Sector Deal was unveiled in early 2019.”
Another company to benefit from the scheme is GRI Renewable Industries, which is to build facilities at Able Marine Energy Park, South Bank of the Humber, with a £78m investment in an offshore wind turbine tower factory that will create up to 260 direct jobs.
Commenting on the government and private sector investment in the Humber region, Unite assistant general secretary for manufacturing Steve Turner said: “This is welcome news for the communities along the Humber. It sets the region on course to become a powerhouse in renewable energy manufacturing.
“Our members at Siemens deserve this investment. They will be relieved that UK turbine manufacture is at last being expanded, something Unite called for years ago.
“Had that happened, the turbines for the world’s largest coastal wind farm, situated on the Dogger Bank off the East Yorkshire coast, would not have had to be imported.”