THE company behind plans for the Wylfa Newydd nuclear power station were urged to “stay true to its promise" to maximise job opportunities for Anglesey residents.
Anglesey AM Rhun ap Iorwerth responded to Horizon Nuclear Power’s announcement it would move to new headquarters in Gloucester by calling on the company to create “create employment now on the island” for those who want to commit to the project long-term.
He said: “I have always recognised the economic potential of the new Wylfa, but it is vital that Anglesey feels the economic benefits now.”
Mr ap Iorwerth said that most of the staff in the current Gloucester HQ are working on the Wylfa development and the number is growing, although in time the HQ will also accommodate staff developing another power station at Oldbury.
He added: “Some recruitment has taken place for work on-site at Wylfa, and some workers from Anglesey are based in Gloucester; but with Horizon already employing well in excess of 100 staff on the project I have urged the company to take every opportunity to create employment now on the island, for those who want to commit long-term to the Wylfa project – including those who no doubt already have the right skills but have left the island due to a lack of employment opportunities.
“I have been in close contact with Horizon since my election and before then, and they know I will not rest in my determination to put the interests of the island, its workforce and the future prospects of our young people first.”
Horizon Nuclear Power spokesman Richard Foxhall said: “We’ve already awarded 52 contracts to local companies and right now we’re ramping up from 50 to 100 people working at the Wylfa Newydd site, including local contractors, as we enter a multimillion pound phase of ground investigations.
“The expansion at our current location allows us to keep the programme on track and deliver the associated growth in North Wales.
“The Anglesey workforce will far exceed those who will remain in Gloucester, with up to 6,000 people employed during construction and up to 1,000 once the station is operational.”