Poole, Portland & Yarmouth in the running for '£670million' economy boost

Three South Coast ports have been shortlisted to host the Navitus Bay
wind park’s headquarters.

The wind park developer, which is seeking to

build up to
218 turbines between Poole and the Isle of Wight,

has announced that Poole,
Portland and Yarmouth are all in the running to house their operations base

Subject to gaining planning permission, the Navitus Bay Development Limited (NBDL) operations base would have a 25-year lifespan, which the company claims would provide an economic value to the region of £670million.

The base is
also expected to support around 160 jobs annually, such as skilled
technicians to maintain the turbines.

NBDL is now pursuing a ‘memoranda of
understanding’ with the shortlisted three local ports.

The aim of these
agreements is to formalise Navitus Bay’s commitment to not only use
local ports for operations and maintenance but to maximise opportunities
for construction activities where technically feasible, for example
turbine assembly and building the wind park foundations, and to assist
these ports with their development plans.

As part of this, Navitus Bay will conduct additional surveys and
scoping work to ensure that local ports are able to capitalise on the
significant opportunities that the development presents.

Mike Unsworth, Project Director of Navitus Bay, said: ‘I am delighted that following constructive discussions with Poole,
Portland and Yarmouth, we are able to commit to using a local port for
operations and maintenance.

‘These port authorities have worked closely
with us to get to this point, and I would encourage local businesses to
do likewise.

‘We will now seek to identify further opportunities for these ports
to host construction and installation activities.

‘The memoranda of
understanding demonstrate our commitment to working with local partners
wherever possible, and to realising the full potential of the wind park
to the region.’

He added: ‘We are actively encouraging as many local businesses as possible to
contact us via our website to see how they can capitalise on these new

The types of contract likely to be awarded during the construction of
the wind park includes steel fabrication, concrete supply, onshore
civil engineering, labour supply, plant hire and marine support

As the workforce expands, NBDL says the knock-on effect on the hospitality
industry is likely to be felt, with hoteliers and restaurants enjoying a
boost to their business.

Port of Poole

Poole Harbour Commissioner chief executive Jim Stewart said: ‘The Port of Poole is well placed to provide Navitus Bay Development
Limited with first class port facilities and excellent service levels
which we believe are crucial for the success of this project.

‘The Port
of Poole looks forward to working closely with the developers to
finalise the full details of the operations base, with the ultimate aim
of bringing jobs and economic benefits to Poole”.

Portland Port

Portland Port general manager Ian McQuade said: ‘This is a very exciting and welcome development.

‘We have been in
close discussion with Eneco, and more recently Navitus Bay, for a number
of years and believe that Portland offers the ideal solution for both
their O&M requirements and their construction needs.

‘This is also
very good news not just for Weymouth and Portland but for the whole of
Dorset and potentially represents a massive boost to the local economy
not just now but for many years to come.

‘We look forward to working
closely with Navitus Bay over the next few months to agree the necessary

Yarmouth Harbour

Yarmouth Harbour Commissioners chief executive and harbour master Chris Lisher said: Yarmouth Harbour Commissioners are delighted that the Harbour is
being considered by Navitus Bay for its Operations and Maintenance base.

‘We see this not only as a great opportunity for the Harbour but also
for the whole of the Isle of Wight.

‘Navitus Bay could bring significant
employment opportunities and business of all types to the Island.

look forward to working with Navitus Bay for the benefit of both parties
and the residents on the Island.’

The pictures show:

A photomontage from Navitus Bay Development Limited of the view of the turbines from Sandbanks, Poole.

A map of the proposed development off the South Coast.

A photomontage by the Challenge Navitus campaign group of what the wind park would look likefrom Durlston Country Park, Swanage.