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Gigaplant approved in Northumberland

Words: Laura Edgar
Britishvolt Gigaplant, Northumberland / Ridge

Northumberland County Council has granted planning permission for the regeneration of a disused coal stocking yard into the UK’s first battery gigaplant.

The 92.2-hectare-site was part of the former Blyth Power Station.

The new plant will have a gross internal floor area of 386,357 square metres and the capacity to produce 300,000 batteries a year for the electric vehicle market.

Manufacturer Britishvolt said an investment of £2.6 billion would create 3,000 “highly skilled” jobs and up to 5,000 more in the wider supply chain.

Multidisciplinary property and construction consultant Ridge and Partners LLP led the planning application process.

Britishvolt CEO Orral Nadjari said: “We have worked with the Ridge experts to align the corporate and stakeholder framework to deliver our highly ambitious ESG and sustainability credentials."

Peter Rolton, Britishvolt chairman, added: “This is a huge win, not only for Britishvolt, but also the people of Northumberland.  

“The gigaplant will bring with it much-needed employment, totally regenerating the area. Britishvolt has a strong social values agenda, as well as a world-class environmental, social and governance framework.  

“At our very heart is doing the right thing. This project is the right thing for UK plc, and its people, on the roadmap to a low-carbon, sustainable future.”  

Glen Sanderson, leader of Northumberland County Council, said approval of the gigaplant is “fantastic” for the local area, the wider county and the whole region.

“We’ve a long and proud history of industry in this part of Northumberland and a factory and investment of this size will put this area firmly on the map once again for generations to come.   

“Here in Northumberland, we’re at the forefront of the offshore renewable energy industry and this is a massive boost. The decision by Britishvolt to choose Northumberland demonstrates just what this county has to offer in terms of its location, its facilities, an ambitious council, and more importantly, its workforce.”

Image credit | Ridge