Regeneration bosses want answers over future of Hartlepool’s nuclear power station

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REGENERATION chiefs will step up the pressure on the Government to find out when Hartlepool could get a new power station.

Bosses at Tees Valley Unlimited are promising a year of activity in 2014 with wind energy and nuclear power high on their agenda for questions that they want answers to.

They say it’s time to end the uncertainty and find out when Hartlepool can expect movement on both fronts.

TVU managing director Stephen Catchpole said: “We would look to see some sort of movement on the power station.

“There seems to be signs of life that new nuclear may have a programme at last being established by the Government, starting elsewhere in the country.

“We would be looking to see where Hartlepool would benefit on that.

“It is almost a sense of discussing with Government about where that site is in their thinking, that they now seem to have potential builders of nuclear power stations in place.

“We want to find out what their intentions are.”

Although a new nuclear power station is being planned in the UK , it will be constructed at Hinkley Point with Hartlepool on a list of sites approved for new build but without a specific date for development.

But the nuclear industry is only one part of TVU’s bold commitment on green energy for 2014. Another is wind energy where Hartlepool wants to be a hub for firms manufacturing for the offshore market.

But there are problems there too, with experts saying a lack of clarity on finance is deterring potential investors from stepping forward.

Mr Catchpole added: “We shall be looking to see offshore wind become more certain in terms of funding and the opportunities, particularly in the North Sea.

“We would like to see someone from the offshore industry look at Hartlepool.

“There are all sorts of things on the horizon that we want to pursue.”

Once the Dogger Bank wind farm becomes reality, it would provide enormous potential for investment in Hartlepool, said Mr Catchpole.

Mr Catchpole said: “For a while, it has been uncertain but these things are a bit more clear and perhaps it will be a big boost to the economy.”