Wind in the sails for Whitby farm plan

 

Politicians from all the major parties have given their backing to a campaign to create a manufacturing hub for wind turbines Yorkshire - with a knock on effect in Whitby.

MPs, candidates and council leaders from across the political spectrum have given their support to a campaign, which was launched on Saturday and aims to ensure the region reaps the full economic benefits of the massive expansion of offshore wind farms.

With at least 2,500 huge turbines required over the next decade in two vast wind farms out in the North Sea, planners and industry experts believe some 10,000 jobs could be created in this region if manufacturers can be persuaded to base themselves on the banks of the Humber.

Austin Mitchell, the veteran Labour MP for Great Grimsby, said: ""This area has been a centre for the energy sector for a long time, and we now need to move further ahead into the new age and become a centre for the alternative fuels of the future.""

Ports further up the Yorkshire coast could also potentially benefit from the new industry, with Whitby and Scarborough earmarked as possible locations for the new service industry which will maintain the wind farms.

Robert Goodwill, Conservative MP for Scarborough and Whitby, said: ""The fishing industry is in decline, particularly white fish, so this would be a good way of filling up these berths and providing employment for the very skilled sea-faring community.""

The use of Endeavour Wharf to provide maintenance for the proposed farm was first mentioned when the cargo shed was sold last year.

Although the site will now be used as a car park, Scarborough Borough Council left open its future use with one eye on supplying services to the wind farm as one of the closest ports.

Whitby Gazette 2010