No let-up in battle for wind jobs

Stuart Drummond speaking during last nights event at the Belle Vue Centre.
Stuart Drummond speaking during last nights event at the Belle Vue Centre.

HARTLEPOOL will not be taking its foot off the pedal as it battles to win 1,000 wind energy jobs.

That was the promise today from town Mayor Stuart Drummond after news that its original Scottish rival for a turbine-making plant had been thrown out of the equation.

Dundee has been rejected by Spanish turbine firm Gamesa because it can not accommodate Gamesa’s offshore requirements.

But a new rival north of the border has emerged and Leith, in Edinburgh, will now oppose Hartlepool in the bid for the multi-million pound deal.

Mr Drummond (pictured) said: “All we can do is keep on providing Gamesa with the answers to the questions they are posing.”

He said it was “hard to tell” whether a change in Hartlepool’s rival for the Gamesa investment was good or bad news.

“We certainly won’t be easing up in our attempts to get Gamesa to come to Hartlepool and we won’t get carried away by this news. We will not take our foot off the pedal.

“We shall keep on lobbying ministers to lobby on our behalf.”

Madrid-based Gamesa wants to build a UK plant to make wind turbines which will create 1,000 direct jobs as well as 800 supply chain posts.

A spokesman for the firm said Gamesa was ploughing £128m into its UK offshore wind business and that sort of investment “requires thorough analysis of all potential sites”.

She said Dundee was out of the running because it could not match the timescales and “offshore requirements” needed to meet Gamesa’s manufacturing ambitions.

She added: “Hartlepool also continues to be evaluated by Gamesa and the company continues an open dialogue, exchange of information and negotiation with PD Ports regarding this.”

● The Mayor on Wednesday: Page 10

● Mail view: Page 8