Neil O’Brien MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, visited Blyth recently to see first hand how it is leading the way in the green energy industrial revolution.
After visiting the town centre to see how the proposed Town Fund investment is progressing, he visited the Port Training Centre to hear of plans for the new Energy Central Campus and learn how the Port’s award winning training arm Port Training Services is supporting apprenticeship opportunities.
On hearing of plans to create a new campus to improve and boost training provision for the vital skills needed in the offshore and green energy industry, Mr O’Brien said: “The North East is well placed for industry growth and creating new jobs, as well as being vital in helping create more cleaner and greener energy rather than relying on importing from places like Russia. New money is coming into the area which is creating a lot of opportunities.”
Martin Lawlor, Chief Executive of Port of Blyth, said: “Investment and a clear vision for the accelerated growth of the renewables sector in the North East and Blyth in particular is vitally important. We’re delighted that Neil took the time to visit us and look forward to working with him and colleagues within his department to maximise the huge opportunities in the sector for Blyth.”
Cllr Glen Sanderson, leader of Northumberland County Council, said: “We are all working so well together here. Blyth was built on the back of the coal industry and now it’s going to lead the way on green energy.”
Energy Central is the UK’s unique port-based service, investment and growth cluster for companies operating in the offshore energy, subsea, decommissioning, battery manufacturing and renewable energy markets. Offering nearly 200HA of strategic sites with access to low carbon power, it is a partnership between the Port, Advance Northumberland, Northumberland County Council and the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult.
The Port’s flagship Bates Clean Energy Terminal, a blueprint for how it will decarbonise itself, was also discussed.