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.”