Great Yarmouth Chamber President John Morse

Great Yarmouth bids to run port ops for 325 turbine wind farm

Sunday, December 23, 2012
3.51 PM

GREAT Yarmouth is vying for the opportunity to run port operations for the East Anglia One windfarm which, if built, could add £500m to the region’s economy.

A planning application has been put in by Vattenfall and ScottishPower to build up to 325 turbines 43 miles off the Suffolk coast south of Lowestoft, which could see construction start in 2016.

As part of the project an analysis will start next year to see if Yarmouth, Lowestoft or Harwich will be the port to serve the turbines’ construction, laying cables to Bawsdey, near Felixstowe and helping to run the vast site.

And it has also been revealed that “floatels” will be set up in the North Sea for construction workers.

Jason Martin, programme director for the windfarm, said that whichever port was chosen, companies in Norfolk and Suffolk were set to benefit from the turbines, which could provide power for up to 770,000 homes and create 1,600 construction jobs and take 170 engineers and technicians to run them.

Yarmouth-based marine company Gardline Marine Services was one of the first firms to be awarded contracts and it has spent 400,000 man hours carrying out survey work.

It sent out two ships to the site and each spent the equivalent of a year surveying the 6,000 sq km set aside for the turbines.

John Morse, head of renewables at Gardline, hopes the company will be involved in the windfarm’s construction and its operational life of more than 20 years.