Region’s companies net contracts as new wind farms take shape

Gibb Safety & Survival's Vattenfall safety wear

Gibb Safety & Survival is among a host of East Anglian firms to net contracts with Vattenfall. It will provide protective clothing, safety, and survival equipment - Credit: Gibb Safety & Survival

East Anglian firms are celebrating as the region’s growing offshore wind energy industry nets them key contracts.

Diss-based Ordtek, Bury St Edmunds-based Miles Drainage and Great Yarmouth-based Gibb Safety & Survival have all won contracts with Swedish energy group Vattenfall, which is set to build Norfolk Vanguard and Norfolk Boreas offshore wind farms.

Norwich-based aerial filming company Hexcam and geoconsulting firm East Point Geo have also recently landed work. Great Yarmouth-based Worley and GEV Power and Lowestoft-based James Fisher Marine Services which will deliver a range of inspections, maintenance and repair services to Vattenfall’s 900 turbines across its 50 wind farms in the UK, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden.

PPE manufacturer and supplier Gibb Safety & Survival has a contract to supply all its 11 UK wind farms for at least three years creating at least six jobs.

It will provide protective clothing, safety, and survival equipment to keep workers safe across its 11 UK wind farms.

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Gibb Group’s new £2m distribution and service hub at Great Yarmouth will see jobs created as a result of the three-year contract to supply and service workwear, head-to-toe PPE, specialist clothing to protect workers from arc or electrical explosion burns, working at height apparatus and rescue, survival and marine equipment.

Miles Drainage will design drainage solutions for Norfolk Vanguard and Norfolk Boreas offshore wind farms for a 60km cable corridor from landfall on the north Norfolk coast to an inland substation where its green electricity will connect to the National Grid.

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Miles Drainage contracts manager Andrew Wright said the firm, based at Great Ashfield, was currently consulting 100 landowners of the 348 plots and fields along the route where the cables will be laid in trenches. As part of what expected to be a year-long contract, the team will walk the cable corridor to identify any special features, come up with plans for effective drainage and feed back to Vattenfall, he said.

“This is a big project for us. Our contracts are anything between 2-3 km and 100 km. We are very pleased that Vattenfall is so keen to use local companies,” he said. “Our work will prevent the (cable) trenches being drenched and flooded when they are dug.”

Ordtek will carry out desk-based unexploded ordnance (UXO) risk management.

Managing director Lee Gooderham said a team of three UXO specialists and geophysical and historical experts used Ordtek’s Mine Map to determine where risks lie across the project zone and would use geophysical data to clear unexploded devices ahead of construction. 

“This important work reinforces our relationship with Vattenfall as we work with them on projects across Europe,” he said.

Vattenfall procurement boss Caroline Olley said: “We’ve been working with companies in the region for several years to prepare the ground and make sure that they were ready to benefit from the opportunities that would come to the area through our investment.

“These contract awards show that the work being put in to refine their offering is starting to pay off, with businesses from the region successfully competing for contracts in the global offshore wind supply chain.”

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