Work begins today on Europe’s largest offshore wind park and biggest enterprise zone in the UK, near Immingham.
Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government will kick-start preparation for the £450m Able Marine Energy Park.
He will be accompanied by senior figures from developers Able, North Lincolnshire Council and the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership.
A £15m grant has been awarded to the development through the Enterprise Zone Foundations for Growth Capital Grant Fund.
AMEP is designed for the marine renewables sector and is expected to create over 4,000 job opportunities after it is completed early next year. It could become a place of future employment for Isle students through links with the new Humber University Technical College being built in Scunthorpe.
North Lincolnshire Council has granted planning permission for the initial enabling works.
Coun Liz Redfern, leader of North Lincolnshire Council, said: “The Secretary of State’s visit today, and the grant for the infrastructure work needed to kick-start AMEP – once again underlines the critical importance this development can play in transforming the economy of the South Bank and indeed the wider region.
“The grant, which will bring immediate benefits through the jobs created during the construction period, also demonstrates the Government’s confidence in the council’s and Able’s shared objectives to put our area – and the UK as a whole – at the forefront of the new energy revolution.”
Kishor Tailor, Chief Executive of the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “It is great news to have the Secretary of State confirm the grant we helped to secure from the Government with AMEP and North Lincolnshire Council. This will bring forward the first phase of work on our largest Humber Enterprise Zone site and the hundreds of jobs associated with the first phase of work.
“The energy park project is a critical part of our plans for growing the Humber as the UK’s energy estuary and this commitment from Government will increase confidence for investors in the site and begin its transformation.”
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles, said: “With the majority of the North Sea’s offshore operations thriving side by side, the Humber is becoming, quite literally, a powerhouse in the British economy and is a vital part of the Government’s long term economic plan to help secure a better future by spreading businesses, jobs and skills across the country.
“Today’s cash injection will help ensure that the Able marine energy park site will become a strong, competitive part of this growing renewable energy hub, attracting new businesses and creating jobs for hardworking local people.”