Written by Jenny Sandy, Hinkley Point C Employment & Skills Manager
Hinkley Point C has created a real buzz around here.
Below I’ll explain a bit more about the training, job opportunities and apprenticeships we’re creating over the life of the HPC build. We aim to recruit at least a third of our workforce locally, which is great news for Somerset.
Helping people find training and new jobs
I’m part of the team that runs the Hinkley Point C Jobs Service. We match local people with jobs on the project, and we’ve already done it for over 200 people.
However, since the project will create 25,000 different roles that need to be filled over the next ten years, we’ve still got some way to go!
We also help people find the right training and courses, so if people want to change career, they can.
Just to take one example, we’ve already helped people get the Security Industry Authority (SIA) training they needed to help them change jobs.
Sadly, not everyone gets a choice about changing career. We recently met employees at a papermill in West Somerset, which was about to close down.
Being made redundant is one of the worst experiences anyone can go through, but the people we met were so impressive and enthusiastic.
120 have already registered with us. We’re finding them the right training – for example 30 are looking at becoming construction plant operators, and could work for Kier Bam in the coming years.
The chance to give apprentices a start
And of course we also train people just starting their careers – like Ben Lewis and Garth Young, who trained at Bridgwater College as steelfixers. Garth used to work in a factory and now, after the 18 month bespoke apprentice scheme, is fully qualified to work on site.
That’s great for Hinkley Point, but Ben and Garth’s apprenticeships with Laing O’Rourke have already meant working on sites elsewhere in the UK, using skills that are in demand across the world.
Transforming the future for my community and the UK
As a local myself, that’s what’s important to me. The Hinkley Point C project is providing opportunities that people in Somerset wouldn’t have had otherwise. It’s giving them long-term careers, not just short-term jobs.
In a decade’s time when the diggers are gone, and Hinkley Point C is providing 7% of the UK’s electricity, our legacy will be about more than just the 900 people working at the plant.
We will have transformed the lives of thousands of people in Somerset – which is why I’m so excited that I’m about to become so busy!
To find out how to get involved visit our Jobs page