Caithness And North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership Update
11th February 2017
Week Commencing 6 February 2017.
The "Jobs and How to Get Them" event was held in Thurso last Saturday (see my online blog and https://www.facebook.com/caithnessjobs/ for event photos). It was very well attended by a range of organisations, at least 50% of whom were offering current employment/ apprenticeship opportunities. And it was good to see that members of the public came from different age groups, and included school and college students as well as unemployed and employed people keen to find out more about current and future employment. I was also delighted to see colleagues from the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm project at the event for the first time, and to hear encouraging news of their plans for an Operations & Maintenance base at Wick harbour.
Next week sees the public opening of the NDA Nuclear Archive in Wick. The complex beside Wick John O'Groats Airport will be operated by Restore UK, and also hosts the Caithness Archive, providing 25 long-term full-time equivalent jobs.
Good to read about the imminent start of work on the short stretch of the B876 at Killimster in Caithness, which has been an enabling project for CNSRP because of its strategic importance to the area's economy. The work is led by CNSRP partner Highland Council.
As part of an ongoing process of helping communicate progress with the delivery of aspects of our economic transition programme CNSRP's partners work together to generate news stories for local, regional and national media. I also speak on a regular basis to individuals and organisations across the area to update on progress. This week:
Congratulations to Wick High School's Ellora James, who this week won the "One To Watch" award at Everywoman’s "Women in Technology" awards ceremony in London. At just 16 years old Ellora is MD of the Envirocache business (http://envirocache.co.uk/) set up through the Apps for Good programme run at Wick High School under the supervision of Chris Aitken. The awards were sponsored by FDM Group and featured shortlisted women from a range of major companies such as IBM, Vodafone, Sage and American Express, making Ellora’s success all the more impressive!
Caithness & North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership
Tel: 01847 805211
Mob: 07717 694055
Week Commencing 13th March 2017 Energy & business services: Delighted to see this week's news that Caithness firm GMR Henderson has been awarded work on the construction programme for the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm project's Operations & Maintenance base in Wick. The company, whose base is only about 100 metres away from the O&M site on the Wick harbourfront, will support the initial demolition and preparatory works.
Week Commencing 6 March 2017 Energy & business services: Atlantis Resources Ltd has this week announced that Phase 1A of the MeyGen project has been awarded full accreditation by Ofgem. Phase 1A is now an accredited 6MW tidal stream generating station and will receive 5 ROCS/MWh.
Week commencing 27 February 2017 Energy & business services: As the construction of the Operations and Maintenance base for the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm project gets closer to starting, the long-term staffing of the project is already being considered. Tier 1 contractor Siemens is inviting applications for apprenticeship programmes: the Siemens offer is for Advanced Apprenticeships in Mechatronic Maintenance (site based technician).
Week Commencing 20 February 2017 Energy & business services: At a meeting of the north Planning Applications Committee of Highland Council this week Councillors agreed to offer no objection to the application by Dounreay Tri Ltd to construct a floating offshore wind project at a site of the north coast of Caithness. The paper considered by Councillors is available to view here .
Week Commencing 16 January 2017. Energy & business services: Following last week's very welcome news that Highland Council has approved the application to redevelop harbour-side buildings in Wick as an Operations & Maintenance base for the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm (BOWL) project comes the first visualisation of what the restored buildings will look like - for picture see the BOWL Twitter feed at https://twitter.com/beatricewind .
This is a short message to update you on activities relating to the Caithness & North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership (CNSRP). Enabling activities: Following last week's news that the Reporter appointed to lead the Public Local Inquiry (PLI) into the Berriedale Braes Improvement Scheme had recommended that the proposed Improvement Scheme should go ahead unamended, it was good to hear this week from Humza Yousaf MSP, Scottish Government Minister for Transport and the Islands, that work will now be undertaken to progress the scheme through the remaining statutory processes.
Week Commencing 12 December 2016 Energy & business services: Good to see news yesterday (Thursday) that the second phase of the Meygen project has reached financial closure, allowing construction to take place in the inner sound of the Pentland Firth in 2017. The project will be taken forward by Stroma Tidal Power Ltd, a wholly owned company of Atlantis Resources Ltd.
Energy & business services: I met this week with RES Offshore, who are working on the Dounreay Tri project, which is seeking consent to build a floating offshore wind demonstrator at a site north of Dounreay. Myself and Alan Ogg of North Highland College met with Senior Developer Jack Farnham to discuss the potential for jobs associated with the operation & maintenance of the project.
Week commencing 21 November 2016 Energy & business services: Representatives of the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Ltd were in Wick yesterday (Thursday 24th) to give a public update on progress with the project, and perhaps more specifically with plans to use Wick harbour as the Operations & Maintenance base for the project. The event was very busy, and it was great to be able to talk to key personnel involved in the project.
Week Commencing 5 November 2016 Energy & business services: · The vessel Olympic Ares arrived in the Inner Sound of the Pentland Firth this week to install the first of the turbines for the MeyGen tidal energy project. As previously highlighted here the turbine support structures and ballast blocks were successfully installed during October, bringing welcome work to the area through Scrabster harbour and local companies.
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