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Firms put Norfolk at the heart of green economy

PUBLISHED: 10:06 27 August 2014 | UPDATED: 10:06 27 August 2014

Tidal Transit's (L) Adam Wright and Leo Hambro at the Outer Harbour in Wells. Picture: Ian Burt

Tidal Transit's (L) Adam Wright and Leo Hambro at the Outer Harbour in Wells. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant © 2013

Norfolk’s growing role as an energy industry hot-spot has been underscored by fresh contract wins by firms at either side of the county.

The county is home to a growing number of firms both directly supplying the sector and also the broader supply chain.

This week, bosses at West Norfolk firm Tidal Transit, which transports technicians to and from off-shore wind farms, said they had sights on expanding across UK following significant growth.

Meanwhile, Great Yarmouth-based 3Sun won a contract for the off-shore wind farm project at the Humber Gateway.

Leo Hambro, pictured, commercial director at Docking-based Tidal Transit, said: “Thanks to our investment, we’ve seen a considerable increase in our turnover and we are aiming to continue to grow substantially.

“We have a vessel working in north Wales at Liverpool Bay and Grimsby at the end of September.

“We are moving our business away from being just Norfolk-focused but to anywhere, we have no geographical limitations.”

In barely three years, the former EDP Future50 firm has gone from one employee to 15 full-time staff and 18 sub-contractors, with sales up by £500,000 to £1.9m in the last year.

The success has come off the back of investment in new ships, and new contracts in Grimsby and North Wales.

Mr Hambro, who runs Tidal Transit with Adam Wright, said: “Despite having only started three or four years ago, in that time we have become a big player in the sector. We’ve got a long way to go to be the size of our main competitors but we are happy with how it’s going.”

At the other side of the county, Andrew Elmes, renewables director of 3sun Group, said they were hoping to build on their 13 years’ experience in off-shore wind project work as they provide electrical and mechanical expertise for 73 wind turbines to be installed at the Humber Gateway Off-shore Windfarm, being built by MHI Vestas.

He said: “It is hoped that this project will help us forge an excellent relationship with MHI Vestas. We look forward to using the professionalism and expertise of our technicians to support the MHI Vestas team.”

Chris Dashper, head of programmes at New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This is yet more evidence that Norfolk, and East Anglia as a whole, is a showcase for the green economy and that businesses can grow and thrive here. It is testament to the expertise in our renewable energy sector that we are attracting contracts from across the UK and the rest of the world, this can only enhance our reputation as a magnet for energy-related investment.”

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