Steelmaker Cours has unveiled its intentions to bring 220 jobs back to the Teeside factory area that closed in February leaving 1,600 jobless. The company said the new jobs would be open to the former employees of the factory and that is good news to the town of Redcar. The plant will be producing monopolies, which is the steel structure used to fix wind turbines to the seabed.
The government has plans to build thousands of offshore wind turbines as an aim to secure alternative energy sources. All of those wind turbines will need structures to be installed and the new company wants to supply them. The old steelmaking plant will be rebuilt and redesigned to allow the manufacturing of the monopiles.
Chris Elliot, product marketing director at Corus, said: “The UK Government has approved ambitious plans to build thousands of wind turbines at sea over the next 10 years.”
He added: “In the UK alone, we estimate that about six million tonnes of steel will be needed over the next 10 years to make the foundations and tower structures for offshore wind turbines. We are positioning ourselves to take full benefit of these opportunities.”
When the Corus plant closed it ended the area’s 170 year tradition of mass steelmaking.
Geoff Waterfield, chairman of a multi-union represented committee with Corus, said: “It is absolutely fantastic. We are so due a bit of good news. People have been through very hard times and we deserve this good news today. Companies like ours should certainly be looking at renewable energy, as projects will require a huge amount of steel and the north-east has been earmarked for that. But it is a new area for Corus and it is a little bit of a gamble. This is a good opportunity for the government to give some support to Corus that was not forthcoming earlier in the year.”