Power plant back on track

An artists impression of the power station and (below) Coun Gordon McCann.
An artists impression of the power station and (below) Coun Gordon McCann.
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A £600m jobs and energy boost is back on track.

Work on a gas-fired power station to be constructed just over the Fleetwood boundary at Hillhouse International Industrial Estate could begin before the end of next year bringing around 750 construction jobs.

Coun Gordon McCann

Coun Gordon McCann

And 50 good-quality permanent jobs will be on offer when it is completed in 2015.

Behind the project is Welsh Power, working through its subsidiary Wyre Power, which had previously hoped the power station would open in 2014.

Company chairman Alex Lambie said bosses were working with central government to resolve noise issues connected with the site and once that was resolved he expected to get permission to go ahead in April.

He said: “It will probably take six months to get the site ready so building should begin in December next year or January 2014.

“We want to get these issues right because we want to be a good neighbour – we don’t want to do anything that would annoy anyone or cause a nuisance.

“If anything, gas plants are becoming more in demand because nuclear plants are not being built until something like 2025. Gas-fired plants will be needed to fill the gap.”

He said: “There will be about 50 jobs on the plant and they are good quality jobs that will last for 25 years.

“That’s the life of the plant but it could be renewed after that.”

Chairman of Fleetwood Town Council, Coun Alan Marsh, said: “It’s ideal, but we need to sit down with people like Wyre Council to see we are getting people properly trained, otherwise people will come from outside to take the jobs.

“Once building work has finished people will have more chance of getting a job because they have CVs and will be in the jobs market.

“If we can get this right it’s magnificent for the area.”

Wyre Council’s cabinet member for the economy, Coun Gordon McCann, said: “Anything that brings business and improves the economy of Wyre is to be welcomed.

“It will be an essential part of power supply because windfarms don’t produce electricity all the time and you need something other than coal-fired power stations which have to run all the time.”

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