A Ruthin-based civil engineering firm has reached a key milestone as part of its work to deliver the land-based infrastructure for a major UK offshore wind farm.
Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK has installed almost 73 miles of underground cabling for Dogger Bank Wind Farm, located in the North East of England, which will be capable of powering six million UK homes annually on completion.
The award-winning firm is delivering the onshore high voltage direct current (HVDC) cabling, which weighs 3,500 tonnes, to help connect the first two phases of the project, Dogger Bank A and B, to the national grid over a 20-mile route.
The Dogger Bank project is the first offshore wind farm in the UK to use HVDC technology, which allows electricity to be transmitted efficiently across long distances.
The firm has completed the HVDC cabling in East Riding of Yorkshire with the support of Bristol-based Power Systems UK and cable installation specialists F B Taylor.
The team will now focus on the installation of around four miles of high voltage alternative current (HVAC) cable from the converter station to the Creyke Beck electricity substation, which connects Yorkshire to the national grid.
Jones Bros project manager James Lockwood said:
“Hitting this key milestone on the world’s largest offshore wind farm has been made possible thanks to the efforts of every individual on site.
“I know it brings everyone from senior managers to trainees and apprentices a great sense of pride to be associated with this project, and we’re excited to see how the rest of the scheme develops.”
During the scheme, the company has reached 500,000 hours without recording a single lost time incident (LTI), meaning no employee sustained an injury leading to a loss of productive work time, or became unable to perform regular duties.
Onshore project manager for Dogger Bank Wind Farm, Oliver Flattery, said:
“The whole team has worked incredibly hard and diligently since the start of 2020 to safely and efficiently prepare the 30km route, through a combination of trenching and drilling methods, before installing protective ducts and then feeding 3,362 tonnes of underground cables through these ducts.
“This has been a huge undertaking, and one we’re all proud to have been part of.”
The project is a joint venture between SSE Renewables (40 per cent), Equinor (40 per cent) and Eni Plenitude (20 per cent).
Dogger Bank Wind Farm, which is being built more than 130km off the Yorkshire coast in the North Sea, is currently being developed in three 1.2GW phases: Dogger Bank A, B and C.
Jones Bros previously completed the enabling works for the construction of the onshore converter station platforms for Sofia Offshore Wind Farm and Dogger Bank C, as part of the third phase of the scheme.
Established in the 1950s, Jones Bros owns one of the largest plant fleets in the UK and employs approximately 500 people.
The company is currently working on contracts in various sectors including highways, flood and marine defence, waste management and renewable energy around the UK.
The company runs an award-winning apprenticeship scheme, which has produced nearly 50 per cent of its current workforce, with many of its senior managers having started out as apprentices or in a trainee role.
It has recruited more than 100 apprentices during the past three years.