Newly approved factory will bring up to 207 highly skilled jobs to Cambois

Plans to bring up to 207 highly skilled jobs to a Northumberland coastal town have been hailed by councillors after being given the green light by planners.

By James Robinson
Wednesday, 8th June 2022, 12:06 pm
A CGI of the planned JDR Cables factory at Cambois.
A CGI of the planned JDR Cables factory at Cambois.

Councillors on Northumberland County Council’s Strategic Planning Committee approved a planning application for an offshore windfarm cable factory at Cambois in a meeting on Tuesday.

It follows on from the approval of plans to build the Britishvolt gigafactory to manufacture car batteries for electric vehicles, creating up to 5,000 jobs.

JDR Cables, which makes high-voltage cables to connect to offshore wind farms and also has a site in Hartlepool, announced plans to build the factory in September last year, with the factory to be located north of the former Blyth Power Station.

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A CGI of the planned JDR Cables factory at Cambois.

Speaking at Tuesday’s meeting, Coun Alex Wallace, who represents the area, said: “It is schemes like this that will benefit the whole of Northumberland. Cambois is becoming a jewel in the crown industrial wise.

“There aren’t enough people in Cambois for all the jobs – it will be the youngsters of tomorrow that will be coming through the doors. I want to say to the residents of Cambois – you will get your opportunity for employment, but this goes beyond Cambois.

“It goes across the length and breadth of the county and even to Tyneside.”

Under the conditions set out in the application, JDR Cables will seek to provide local residents with job opportunities for at least the next ten years, with opportunities such as apprenticeships and graduate schemes offered under a section 106 agreement.

The company will also build relationships with local colleges and the region’s universities.

The meeting’s chairman, Coun Trevor Thorne, added: “This is a really good news story. We’re bringing jobs and industry back to the south east corner.

“It is the only way you restore prosperity back to an area. You bring the jobs, you invest, you bring wealth, spending power and hopefully we will see the prosperity of that south east corner come up again.

“I think the section 106 agreement on jobs is marvellous news because it is not all about jobs and training, it’s about getting local people into work and I find that very encouraging. I would like to give this application my full support.”

The committee unanimously approved the proposals.

Speaking after the meeting, Deputy Council Leader Richard Wearmouth, Cabinet Member for Resources, said: “We’re absolutely delighted to be welcoming one of the most advanced subsea cable manufacturing facilities in the world into the county.

“This brand-new facility will focus on renewable energy products and services – which is crucial towards the county’s carbon neutral plans.

“It’s also the latest step in Northumberland’s new green industrial renaissance – where once we had heavy industry we’re now seeing a new wave of renewable manufacturing plants coming to the area – bringing jobs and prosperity.

“Getting to this stage is testament to the hard work of many of our staff and partner organisations who must take much of the credit of securing planning approval.”

Cllr Jeff Watson, Chair of Advance Northumberland, added: “This is great news. We’ve been working tirelessly to support this facility, which will be another major employer in south-east Northumberland – and continue the county’s emergence as a key hub for renewable energy engineering and industry.”