What is Hinkley?
You may already be aware that the proposed Hinkley Point C in Somerset will be the UK’s first new nuclear power station in 20 years. The EDF Energy-led project will be Europe’s largest ever construction scheme, employing 5,600 people at peak and providing a huge boost to regional economic activity during the construction process, When operating, it will provide electricity to around 5 million homes.
Hinkley Point C will be the first new nuclear power plant in the UK in 20 years following an agreement between the government and EDF Group.
“As we compete in the tough global race, this underlines the confidence there is in Britain and makes clear that we are very much open for business.” Former UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, on the Hinkley Point C agreement.
The site and its construction will not only create jobs and benefit the economy in Somerset but also nationally, as well as producing “home-grown” electricity that could power an area twice the size of London.
The 430 acre site – reducing to 165 acres once operational - will generate enough electricity to power nearly 6 million homes once operational, bring 900 permanent jobs to the area and create around 25,000 jobs during construction.
The Nuclear Industry provides nearly a fifth of electricity and employs around 40,000 people in the UK.
What skills are needed?
The first phase of the project will be the construction of the power station, which is estimated to last around 10 years. During this time there will be significant demand for construction workers and civil, electrical and mechanical engineers. Opportunities will include construction, civil engineering, electrical installation, hospitality, catering, logistics, security, site services, support roles and others over the coming years.
The nuclear industry is highly regulated, which means that EDF Energy and its construction partners need clear evidence of the skills individuals hold who are working on the site. If your employees do not yet have any formal qualifications they will need to acquire them. There are various fast-track routes available for those with existing skills and experience. They will also need to undertake training in relevant health and safety aspects, and to comply with any site access requirements relevant to the work they will be doing. In certain cases, basic English and maths skills will also be required.
What are the benefits for my business?
Apart from the obvious benefit of being ready to tender for Hinkley C-related contracts, a more highly skilled workforce is likely to lead to increased productivity, higher profitability and greater versatility. An employer who invests in his workforce through training is likely to find that employees are more motivated and loyal.
Petroc has a range of training available to suit your business and provide you with the support to consider tendering for work to be part of the proposed Hinkley Point C supply chain.