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The two MPs were taken on a tour of the £9 million centre, which provides a unique in-house training environment for service technicians for conventional and renewable energy plants. Siemens has invested £3 million alone in the wind power training school, which is part of the centre, and which houses two full-scale wind turbine nacelles, training towers and electrical and mechanical work stations. All 500 plus Siemens wind power technicians will pass through this school as part of their training before being deployed on UK wind farms. Siemens also offers this training to its customers’ technicians.
Chuka Umunna, commenting on Siemens’ Training Centre said: “I am truly impressed by what I have seen today. Siemens is a major employer in the North East and contributor to the UK economy. The company’s investment in skills and training, especially apprenticeships is key to generating long term employment and especially in the green economy. It is a model for industrial growth and development here in the North East and nationally.”
The centre is in fact part of a wider investment story for Siemens in the UK, which employs 13,000 people, of which 8,000 are engaged in manufacturing and engineering. Of these, 2,000 are based in the North East and 1,000 at Siemens Energy Service site in Newcastle. Siemens works across the energy spectrum - what it terms the “power matrix”, providing infrastructure and technologies, which will help ensure the UK has a diverse and secure energy supply in future years.
Investment in the UK’s renewables infrastructure is a key part of Siemens’ strategy. This year alone, Siemens has made multi-million investments in enhancing its environmental portfolio in the UK. In February Siemens completed the acquisition of Bristol-based Marine Current Turbines, the UK’s leading tidal energy company, and last month acquired Tronic and Matre, a leader in subsea power grid solutions based in Cumbria and Norway. Earlier this month, Siemens also achieved another milestone for its proposed wind turbine assembly and production facility at Green Port Hull, when planning permission was granted by Hull City Council. This would be the UK’s first facility for wind turbines. Further news about the Green Port Hull development is expected later in the year.
As Graham Hartley, managing director of Siemens Energy Service UK and Ireland said:
“As an energy business committed to combating climate change and developing next generation low carbon sources of energy, we are investing across the board in technologies to facilitate this. We are about to complete the largest ever turbine modernisation programme with Drax Power Station, which will save over one million tonnes of CO2. Equally, we are investing in renewables.
At Newcastle, we are leading the way in developing service engineers for the future. Having a world-class training facility to support this is critical. Given the North East’s history and engineering heritage, we’re incredibly proud to house the UK’s only training centre combining training facilities for technicians working on wind farms and power plants.”
Siemens has also made further investments in its training infrastructure with the arrival at the weekend of the larger 3.6MW nacelle in Newcastle and the tripling of its renewables apprenticeship intake.
Notes to Editors:
Siemens in the UK
Siemens was established in the United Kingdom 169 years ago and now employs 12,972 people in the UK. Last year’s revenues were £4.4 billion*. As a leading global engineering and technology services company, Siemens provides innovative solutions to help tackle the world’s major challenges, across the key sectors of energy, industry, infrastructure & cities and healthcare. Siemens has offices and factories throughout the UK, with its headquarters in Frimley, Surrey. The company’s global headquarters is in Munich, Germany. For more information, visit www.siemens.co.uk
* Data includes intercompany revenue. Data may not be comparable with revenue reported in annual or interim reports.
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