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Construction work starts on Britishvolt gigafactory
Construction work has begun at the site of the UK’s first large full-cycle gigafactory. Construction firm ISG has started the enabling works at Britishvolt’s site in Northumberland – after planning permission was granted in July. When fully operational, the plant will create around 3,000 direct jobs, with another 5,000 associated jobs in the supply chain.
Britishvolt is on target to manufacture some of the world’s most sustainable, low carbon battery cells on the site of the former Blyth Power Station coal stocking yard located in Cambois, Northumberland.
The project will be built in phases towards total capacity by end-2027 onwards, allowing the business to keep on top of any technological advancements. Once at full capacity, the gigaplant will have a production capability equating to approximately enough cells for 300,000 electric vehicle battery packs per year, intended primarily for the automotive industry.
Richard McDonell, Britishvolt project director, said: “Today is a historic day as it marks the start of construction on the UK’s premier gigaplant, Britishvolt – a landmark event for UK manufacturing and the automotive industry on the road to zero. It is a pleasure to see our tier one construction partner ISG, and its world-class workforce, commence preliminary works on site ahead of the main construction programme, which we anticipate will start in late autumn/early winter. This initial phase will see the site cleared and preparatory work carried out for the services and infrastructure that will support construction activity.
“This is yet another milestone on our journey to building the UK’s first full-scale gigaplant. It’s a boost for UK plc and the real kick-start of the energy transition, of which Britishvolt batteries will be at the very heart. Main construction will see over 2,500 people involved in the project, a huge positive for the UK. This is an exciting announcement and marks the tangible start and progress of the main factory building where we will be producing some of the world’s lowest carbon, sustainable battery cells to help accelerate the transition to a low carbon future.”
Peter Millett, high tech managing director for ISG’s engineering services business, added: “The positive momentum, passion and sense of genuine excitement that underpins this nationally important project is driving the entire team forward at pace, and this significant construction milestone demonstrates our collective commitment to UK manufacturing and to supporting communities across Northumberland. This is the starting point for the transformation of a disused site in Cambois with a legacy in the industrial past, that from today will become a beacon for innovation and advanced manufacturing right here in the North East.”