Scira Offshore Energy has awarded a new contract for the provision of a range of support services for its £1bn Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm off the coast of North Norfolk, to a local energy services company GEV Offshore Limited.

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From its base in Great Yarmouth, GEV Offshore will provide rope access led fabric maintenance services, and under a separate award, provide lifting operations support to Scira, which operates 88 turbines and two substations at its recently commissioned offshore site.

Scira’s General Manager Einar Strømsvåg said: “Now that the construction of the Sheringham Shoal wind farm is complete, and Scira has assumed full responsibility for its operation and maintenance, we need to ensure that we establish a supply chain which can support the technical integrity of our wind farm. Wherever possible, we want local companies to be the foundation of that chain. GEV Offshore fulfills the criteria.”

GEV Offshore continues is currently identifying new head office premises to accommodate its growth plans, and has made a significant investment in dedicated ‘working at height’ training facilities at its Great Yarmouth base.

It has also invested in its local presence at the Hethel Engineering Centre, to which it has relocated its Oxifree anti-corrosion coatings business.

David Fletcher, Managing Director of GEV Offshore, said: “This three year contract strengthens GEV Offshore’s presence in the growing renewables sector, which is projected to represent nearly 50pc of our company’s turnover in 2013.

“We were delighted to secure this contract having successfully worked on the field during the construction phase. We also welcome the commitment shown by Scira in awarding the work to local companies and helping to create local jobs. We are planning to recruit additional technicians and fill a number of administrative roles from the local labour market to support this contract and this is good news for the region.”

GEV Offshore employs more than 60 staff on and offshore in the UK. It will provide a full range of fabric maintenance services including work using rope access techniques, for the offshore wind turbines and substations and the onshore substation at Salle, near Cawston. It will also provide lifting operations support for the ongoing maintenance of the substation cranes and supply expert personnel to perform lifting operations.

Scira Contract Manager, Colin Galer commented: “GEV has been associated with the project from an early stage, supplying crane operations maintenance and support and, as we move into the operations and maintenance phase, I am keen that we build on the excellent relationship we have with the GEV team.”

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