EDF Energy Somerset Chamber of Commerce SWMAS Business West
  1. Hinkley Point C spending in the South West reaches £1bn with 6,500 jobs created so far

    April 4, 2019

    New figures released today show the growing positive impact of Hinkley Point C on jobs, skills and people in the South-West and beyond. The numbers are published in the latest annual report into the socio-economic benefits of the nuclear power station which is under construction in Somerset.

    Hinkley Point C’s Realising the Socio-economic Benefits report measures Hinkley Point C’s performance against ambitions set out before construction began. It shows that:

    Spending with South West businesses reached £980m by the end of January and has now topped £1bn. A further £500m is ready to be spent in new contracts which have already been signed.

    • 6,500 people have worked on the construction site so far
    • 1,700 of the current workforce live in Somerset, of which 300 are under 35 years old
    • 8,500 people have been trained and assessed at the specially built Construction Skills and Innovation Centre near the site
    • 380 apprentices have already been taken on by the project

    As well as tackling climate change by providing decades of reliable, low carbon electricity, Hinkley Point C aims to provide lasting social and industrial benefits. These range from increasing local employment, to the development of a sustainable regional supply chain and the advancement of new training facilities and qualifications.

    The report highlights the big efforts to build a pipeline of skills from schools to the site. Last year, the project worked with 14,500 pupils in over 100 schools and colleges. Efforts to increase the poor level of diversity in construction have shown women succeed in areas traditionally dominated by men – like operating the 50 cranes where half of the first crane apprentices are women. Work to improve accessibility in 2018 also saw the first intake of from a new supported traineeship for those with special educational needs.

    As well as the jobs on site, around 800 people are working in Bristol on the project and thousands more are supplying Hinkley Point C from over 1,100 companies in every part of the UK. For example, around 1,000 workers come from Wales and more than 60 Welsh companies supply the project, including over 200,000 tonnes of steel that will be used on site. Positive benefit is also being felt by businesses close by in Somerset itself, with the report highlighting a number of examples including Portishead based Osprey and Taunton based Viridor. The full report and case studies are available online here.

    Stuart Crooks, Managing Director, Hinkley Point C, said; “Our teams are making great progress on-site, but this report shows we are also delivering on our ambition to make a lasting difference to people, skills and the regional economy. We are providing opportunities for people to develop their talents and build lasting careers”

    Sam Evans, Head of Hinkley Supply Chain Engagement at the Somerset Chamber of Commerce, said: “The work on site is accelerating, creating more and more opportunities for South West businesses to bid for and win valuable contracts as the supply chain grows. What’s especially pleasing is that, far from the list of companies registered all being construction and engineering companies, we are seeing a broad range of sectors represented, including design agencies, catering companies, professional services firms and office fit-out businesses.”

  2. HPC News Update

    March 21, 2019

    World’s Strongest Tower Crane Erected

    In order to lift the components of the first Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) down into Unit 1’s Heat Sink, the world’s strongest tower crane in its class has been erected on Site. Standing 72m high, with a 73m main boom, the crane can lift 330 tonnes and is hard to miss on the skyline.

    The team has been working hard in partnership with contractors Osprey to reach the milestone. At the end of 2018, they saw the arrival of the first machine at Combwich Wharf and, since then, Balfour Beatty has made great progress making sure that the adit, which is where the TBM will be launched, is ready. Three TBM components, including the cutter head, will form the 15m front section of the TBM. They will be welded together and put in a cradle – a structure similar to train tracks. From March through to July, the rest of the adit will be bored and the full 150m length of the TBM will be constructed.

    Peter Ross, Programme Manager, said: “We’re really pleased to be moving ahead with this integral part of the HPC build, in line with our schedule. The first machine will be working hard over the next year to reach 3.5km out in to the Bristol Channel, removing up to 100,000m³ of earth by itself.”


    Tunnel On Track

    In addition to the great progress on the launch adit for the TBM’s and the world’s strongest capacity tower crane in its class, Balfour Beatty is making good progress at Avonmouth. The factory is continuing to churn out the segments that will line the tunnels under the Bristol Channel. At the same time at Avonmouth, work is also pushing on with construction of the steel reinforcements for the heads that will cap the tunnel shafts. The four largest heads, which weigh nearly 5,000 tonnes each, will be built using some of the most complex steel reinforcement ever used by Balfour Beatty.

    Taken from The Point March 2019

  3. Change at the top of the Hinkley Supply Chain

    March 11, 2019

    A familiar face will be taking on a new challenge when she steps up to become the Hinkley Point Project Lead on behalf of Somerset Chamber of Commerce.

    Sam Evans, who is currently the Head of Hinkley Supply Chain Engagement for the Chamber, will become the Hinkley Project Lead in June, when Chris Langdon steps away from the role.

    Chris has been the Project Lead for the Hinkley Supply Chain team since its inception in 2010 and has decided to step away from his role in order to grow his own business.

    Working closely with EDF Energy and key stakeholders over more than eight years, Chris has led the development of the local supply chain and helped to maximise the benefits to businesses in Somerset and the wider South West.

    Stephen Henagulph, Chief Executive of Somerset Chamber of Commerce, said Chris had helped to ensure local businesses were at the forefront of the project to build a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point and thanked him for his commitment and enthusiasm.

    “Chris has made sure Somerset businesses have been at the centre of the Hinkley Point C supply chain and has helped to forge strong, productive relationships between local companies and those across the UK and further afield.

    “Sam will be able to continue Chris’ hard work, ensuring local firms benefit from the huge investment Hinkley Point C is bringing to Somerset, the South West and South Wales.”

    Chris said it had been a privilege to work on the Hinkley Supply Chain project: “This has been a fascinating and challenging project and I have been delighted to be involved right from the start.

    “Working with a strong EDF Energy supply chain engagement team, who have demonstrated commitment to finding innovative ways for this very complex infrastructure project to engage with a local supply chain, has been a privilege.

    “There is always more we can do and I am sure the skilled chamber team in place will rise to the continuing challenge.”

    Sam joined the chamber as a Data Co-ordinator for the Hinkley Supply Chain in 2014 and has been the Head of Hinkley Supply Chain Engagement since 2017.

    Sam said: “I am looking forward to further developing the existing Hinkley Point C Supply Chain team and strengthening relationships with external stakeholders and partners.

    “Hinkley Point C is a huge project, not just for Somerset and the South West, but for the whole of the UK and it’s vital local businesses have a strong voice to represent them.”

  4. Advanced Business Apprentice sought by Hinkley Supply Chain team

    March 7, 2019

    This week is National Apprenticeship Week and the Hinkley Supply Chain Team, based within the Somerset Chamber of Commerce, is offering a unique opportunity to be part of one of the biggest construction projects in Europe and the first new nuclear power station to be built in the UK for over 20 years.

    The team is looking for an Advanced Business Apprentice to play a pivotal role in the Hinkley Supply Chain Team, supporting suppliers to the Hinkley Point C new nuclear project and maximising involvement from potential local suppliers.

    The role will be based at the Somerset Energy and Innovation Centre (SEIC) in Bridgwater and the successful candidate will need to be outgoing, organised and computer-literate. Duties will include handling telephone and email correspondence, organising and supporting workshops, data entry and reporting and event management.

    The Hinkley Supply Chain Team is part of Somerset Chamber of Commerce and works in partnership with Hinkley Point C developer EDF Energy, the South West Manufacturing Advisory Service (SWMAS) and business advisory company Business West.

    The team ensures a high-value supply chain and skills legacy for the South West and South Wales from the construction of Hinkley Point C. It achieves this through targeted support to both existing and would-be suppliers of the Hinkley Point C project.

    The Advanced Business Apprentice will train for an Advanced Business Administration Standard (Level 3) at Weston College of Further and Higher Education and will ideally need both GCSE maths and English from A-C (4-9). A full driving licence and availability of a vehicle is essential.

    Sam Evans, Head of Hinkley Supply Chain Engagement, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for someone who enjoys networking and has a strong attention to detail. We work to tight deadlines and we’re a small team so a sense of humour and willingness to be flexible is a must.”

    Hinkley Point C is aiming to create 1,000 apprenticeships during construction and, to date, some 378 apprentices have joined teams working across the project, learning new skills in everything from catering and surveying to welding and civil engineering.

    More information about the Advanced Business Apprenticeship is available online at https://www.findapprenticeship.service.gov.uk/apprenticeship/-386611. Details about the Hinkley Supply Chain is available at https://www.hinkleysupplychain.co.uk.

    The closing date for applications is March 31 with a possible start date of April 20.


  5. Sedgemoor Campus opens its doors to the Hinkley Point C workforce

    February 28, 2019

    Bridgwater’s MP Ian Liddell-Grainger officially opened Hinkley Point C’s new Sedgemoor Campus at an event for local residents, Councillors and community leaders.

    Following a successful 18-month construction period, the Campus boasts 29 quality accommodation units that can house almost 1,000 workers, along with restaurants and leisure facilities.

    Together with the smaller Hinkley Campus located adjacent to the main site, the project’s new campus facilities can now accommodate almost 1,500 people.

    The Campus is operated by local company HOST and is already providing hundreds of career opportunities for the communities around it. Many of these jobs have already been filled by people who live within walking distance and the development will continue to deliver a long-term, positive legacy for the local area.

    David Eccles, EDF Energy’s Head of Stakeholder Engagement, said: “The opening of our new campus is a milestone for the both the project and the local area. This moment would not have been achievable without the continued partnership between ourselves, HOST, the wider supply chain, the local authorities and of course, the local community itself.”


    • HPC News Update – June 2019

      Balfour Beatty pour first nuclear concrete at Avonmouth The Balfour Beatty team poured the UK’s first nuclear concrete away from a nuclear site when they began work on one of the six 5,000 tonne reinforced concrete heads which will cap the cooling water tunnels under the Bristol Channel. In total, Read more →

    • HPC News Update – May 2019

      HPC is on track to reach J0 this summer J0 – or ‘Jalon Zero’ – is a French term meaning ‘milestone zero’. At HPC it refers to the point when work starts on building the nuclear power station’s structures above ground. HPC is on track to reach J0 this summer Read more →

    • HPC Suppliers – Support Grant

      Sedgemoor-based small or medium-sized business (SME) who work as part of the Hinkley Supply Chain or are registered to be considered for work at HPC could be eligible for a grant of up to £5,000. The grant scheme is designed to help SMEs meet or better fulfil the requirements of Read more →

EDF Energy Heart of SW West of England LEP North Somerset Welsh Government