Australian engineering firm creates new jobs in Scotland

Australian engineering firm creates new jobs in ScotlandNicola Sturgeon, Deputy First Minister, today announced the creation of 110 new jobs by a global oil and gas contractor, Clough in Glasgow.

The investment of £1.5 million Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) fund will enable the Australian engineering contractor to service the energy, chemical, mining and mineral markets across Scotland while boosting economic growth and the trades industry.

Ms Sturgeon said: “This is yet another indication of the strong performance in the Scottish economy, which can only be enhanced by the powerful economic levers available to us through independence, which would be used to attract even more jobs and investment.

“This company has a long history of working across the globe and they have shown a commitment in investing in the workforce in Scotland. With their expansion to Scotland and in doing so creating 110 jobs which will support a boost to the local economy.

“This is a testament to the quality and skills of the local workforce. Scotland’s energy sector boasts strong engineering and manufacturing skills that are globally recognised across the oil and gas industry.”

Kevin Gallagher, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, said: “The opening of our operating centre in Scotland represents a key step in Clough’s international expansion strategy, and enables our world class engineering, project management, commissioning and operations and maintenance services to support new regions.

“Scotland was selected as the most attractive location for Clough due to its access to world class technical universities and highly experienced engineering resources, combined with its proximity to clients and opportunities in the North Sea, Europe, Middle East and Africa.

“Our Scottish centre will provide engineering support services to projects throughout this region as well as Australasia, helping to enhance value for clients across Clough’s extensive project portfolio.

“I’d like to acknowledge and thank Scottish Enterprise for their outstanding support in helping Clough establish a strong foundation for growth in the region”.

Carillion awarded £200m Nottingham hospitals contract

Carillion logoNottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust has chosen Carillion for a five-year facilities management contract worth £200 million.

The scheme will also include Queen’s Medical Centre and Nottingham City Hospital with Carillion anticipated to start running these services from June 2014

The decision follows a two year procurement process which involved the Trust going out to the market to provide assurance that services are achieving best value for money, delivering the highest quality for patients and are fit for the future.

Commenting, Peter Homa, Chief Executive of Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “Carillion has extensive experience of running estates and facilities services at other similar-size hospitals.

“We are confident that by working in partnership with Carillion and utilising their expertise and innovative ideas for running these services, we can build on our strengths and further improve service standards for the benefit of our patients.”

Carillion Chief Executive, Richard Howson, said: “I am delighted that Carillion has been selected as the preferred bidder to become a strategic partner for one of the country’s largest NHS Trusts.

“We look forward to working with the Nottingham University Hospitals Trust and to using our extensive skills and experience in the health sector to support the Trust in delivering first-class patient services.”

Aberdeen development plans approved

Aberdeen development plans approvedA multi-billion pound investment in jobs, homes and infrastructure over the next 20 years in Aberdeen has been given the go-ahead by the Scottish government.

Ministers approved the Aberdeen City and Shire Strategic Development Plan which replaces the previous Aberdeen City and Shire Structure Plan (2009) with immediate effect, paving the way for new jobs and boosting economic growth.

The new Plan is also consistent with the Scottish Government’s aspirations for the development of Scotland as set out in Proposed National Planning Framework 3.

Councillor Ramsay Milne, chair of the Strategic Development Planning Authority (SDPA), welcomed the approval of the new Plan.

He said: “The approval of the Strategic Development Plan by Scottish Ministers is very welcome, setting a firm foundation for its implementation, including through the Local Development Plans being prepared by the two councils.

“We are the only city-region in Scotland to have achieved 100% coverage of up-to-date development plans, an achievement we should all be rightly proud of maintaining with the approval of the Strategic Development Plan.”

SDPA vice-chair Councillor Peter Argyle added: “With the approval of the Regional Transport Strategy Refresh earlier this year and now the Strategic Development Plan, we have a consistent and positive framework for both planning and transport at the city-region scale.

“This joint working between the SDPA and Nestrans, as well as the two councils, is very welcome and I am sure it will continue as we work with all parties to deliver the infrastructure to facilitate the growth aspirations of our plans.”

Bam bags £20m Teesside University development

Bam bags £20m Teesside University developmentBAM Construction has won a multi-million pound contract to build a brand new, world class teaching centre for Teesside University, boosting local jobs in the trades.

The £20 million campus heart development will transform the centre of the University campus offering modern, flexible teaching facilities for students with state-of-the-art new and innovative learning spaces and technologies.

BAM will encourage smaller local firms to become involved in the building of the development through ‘meet the buyer’ events.

The company has shown its commitment to involving students and apprentices as part of the project and ensuring there are work experience and placement opportunities.

BAM’s project manager Mark Sanderson said: “It is not often you get to make such an impact on a university campus and creating this flagship building for Teesside will be a huge highlight of many of our personal careers.

“We look forward to working with local companies and students to ensure the building project benefits Middlesbrough’s economy and environment during construction as well as when it’s complete.”

BAM will deliver a facility with an impressive BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating and a string of strong environmentally friendly features.

Work will begin on construction in April while the project will also be used as a live example of building information modelling (BIM) for study groups.

Extensive landscaping and public realm will also provide an attractive and vibrant centre to the campus which will be enjoyed by students and the wider community.

Malcolm Page, Teesside University Chief Operating Officer, said: “This is a fantastic new development for the University and represents a significant investment for students, the community and for Middlesbrough and the region.

“BAM were chosen for this project because of their innovative approach to the project which offered a top class solution to delivering our vision along with a strong emphasis on value for money.”

New Build to Rent scheme to deliver homes and jobs

New Build to Rent deal to deliver homes for private rentA new deal signed today will deliver newly-built homes specifically for private rent in 6 different towns, Housing Minister Kris Hopkins has announced.

The minister welcomed this third deal through the government’s £1 billion Build to Rent scheme that will help build new homes and boost the construction industry.

The overall scheme is on track for work on 10,000 new homes for private rent to be underway by 2015.

Building to rent

Under the terms of today’s deal, the Mill Group will receive £8.7 million to work alongside Bovis Homes to deliver 190 homes for private rent.

The team will build 110 houses and 80 apartments across 6 different sites. They are:

  • Wickhurst Green, Horsham – 46 homes
  • Charlton Hayes, Filton, Bristol – 43 homes
  • Coopers Edge, Brockworth – 31 homes
  • Oak Tree Place, Hedge End, Southampton, Hampshire – 30 homes
  • Great Kneighton, Trumpington, Cambridge – 27 homes
  • Aspen Park, Hemel Hempstead – 13 homes

The Build to Rent fund is designed to help developers build large scale, quality homes specifically for the private rented sector.

Housing Minister Kris Hopkins said: “Millions of people use the flexible option of renting in the private sector. I want to ensure tenants have a choice of high-quality homes, rented under reasonable terms.

“So I’m pleased that this deal is complete to build 190 homes across 6 sites specifically for private rent.

“And with more sites being considered for a share of our £1 billion Build to Rent fund, we’re well on track to have work underway on 10,000 homes for rent by 2015.”

Margaret Allen, Interim Executive Director of programmes and recoverable investment at the Homes and Communities Agency, said: “This investment in the private rented sector is a good example of innovative partnership working using the Build to Rent programme.

“When complete it will provide private rented choice alongside market sale homes in 6 areas where there is a high demand for homes.”

Work gets underway at Southend housing scheme

Sanctuary GroupThe Sanctuary Group has started construction work on a new £4.8 million housing scheme in Southend-on-Sea that will see the building of 33 apartments and boost the trades.

The development is being built by Sanctuary Group’s contractors UK Construction Ltd and on completion, will replace Chalkwell Lodge, an existing supported living scheme in Westcliff-on-Sea.

The scheme is expected to help the local economy and create new jobs. The Sutton Road project is due for completion in Spring 2015

Chris Cole, Sanctuary Group’s head of development – east and south east, said: “This development is set to provide much-needed supported accommodation for Southend and we are pleased to be working closely with Southend-on-Sea Borough Council to deliver this.

“The bespoke design of the apartments and the communal facilities will ensure that residents can live independently in a safe and secure environment with the care they need on hand.”

Councillor Lesley Salter, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council’s Executive Councillor for Adult Social Care, Health and Housing, said: “This is a very exciting development to give vulnerable residents the vital opportunity to live independently in a safe and supportive environment.

“We are very pleased to be working in partnership with Sanctuary Group on this development, and are extremely grateful for the Government funding enabling us to do so.”

Richmond Fellowship locality manager Lesley Brady said: “We’re really excited about this new development as it means our residents will be able to live in self-contained flats rather than the more communal accommodation we’re currently using.

“This will make it much easier for us to support them to develop the independent living skills they need to be able to move on to their own homes.”

Crossrail extension set to boost the trades

Crossrail extention set to boost the tradesThe government has confirmed that Crossrail will be extended to Reading and Twyford which will create new jobs and boost the UK construction industry.

Crossrail will now run to Reading after the joint sponsors, the Department for Transport (DfT) and Transport for London (TfL), instructed Crossrail Limited to extend the route.

It is estimated that Crossrail will generate at least 75,000 business opportunities and support the equivalent of 55,000 full time jobs right around the UK.

Three out of five businesses currently winning work on the project are based outside London and over half are small and medium-size companies.

Rail minister Stephen Hammond said: “Crossrail reaching Reading is further proof of our commitment to deliver a transport network fit for the 21st century. It will improve connectivity and deliver greater choice and convenience for passengers travelling into London.

“It will also make better use of the already congested Great Western Main Line, freeing up capacity for further improvements including potential direct services from Reading to Heathrow as part of the western access scheme.

“In addition I have requested Network Rail to look at the cost benefit analysis of increasing the number of faster trains between Reading and Paddington.”

Trades boost as Crossrail is extended to ReadingCrossrail will boost London’s rail capacity by 10% by connecting Reading and Heathrow in the west with Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. Up to 24 trains an hour will run between Paddington and Whitechapel during peak times.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “I am thrilled that the people of Reading and Twyford will be able to take advantage of Crossrail, putting them on the doorstep of London’s main employment centres by directly linking them to the City and West End in world-class style.”

Industry investment delivers jobs boost for Ayrshire

The Scottish GovernmentThe Scottish Government has announced the creation of 67 highly skilled new jobs at oil and gas service company, Howco Group, in its Ayrshire engineering division following a £7.5 million investment.

This investment will bring the total number of Scottish jobs across the company’s Aberdeen, Cumbernauld, Glasgow and Irvine sites to over 360 and will see an additional 2,000 sq metres of factory space being created, to accommodate the company’s ambitious international growth plans.

The company, which specialises in the provision of specialised steels and equipment for the buoyant oil and gas sector, has ambitious expansion plans which are being supported by Japanese parent company, Sumitomo Corporation and a £750,000 Regional Selective Assistance grant from Scottish Enterprise.

First Minister Alex Salmond said: “The creation of this number of highly skilled jobs is excellent news for North Ayrshire.

“I am delighted that Howco are investing more than £7 million to allow them to improve their facilities here, as well as expand to their new site nearby.

“This is a tribute to the success of the team here at the Drybridge site, supported and enabled by Scottish Enterprise, and North Ayrshire Council.

“The fact that the company is so supportive of training by offering apprenticeships is also to be welcomed.

“The record investment being made in the oil and gas sector, of which Howco is part, points to a bright and healthy future for the industry for decades to come.”

As a major local employer, Howco is committed to opening up even more employment opportunities through the Modern Apprenticeship Programme and support Scotland’s future oil and gas industry.

Wiltshire College plans get the go-ahead

Wiltshire College plan gets the go-aheadWiltshire College has been given the go-ahead to build its new £21 million campus in Chippenham, with construction work set to start in May 2014.

Wiltshire Council granted planning permission that will see the building of a 9,100m2 three-storey teaching block while boosting the local economy and creating new jobs in the trades.

Ben Allen, Vice Principal for Business Development, said: “We are delighted to have got planning permission for the new campus.

“This is a transformational project for both the college and the wider community of Chippenham and we are looking forward to starting on site.”

Building work is due to take around 16 months to complete with the world class facilities opening to students in September 2015.

The new campus will be flexible to meet the future anticipated demand of students, employers and the community and will provide industry standard workshops and vocationally-tailored spaces, together with realistic working environments.

The project has been aligned with the Local Economic Partnership initiatives and Chippenham Vision Master Plan.

MP for Chippenham Duncan Hames said: “I am delighted that the Coalition Government has been awarded the money to rebuild the Chippenham campus.

“Chippenham missed out under the last Government, as I reminded the Prime Minister in the House of Commons, when I enlisted his support for the College’s bid, so it’s great to see the Coalition Government giving our young people the best chance to gain the workplace skills employers demand.

“After such a long wait, I’m very pleased that construction will be getting underway soon.

“This sort of long-term investment in the skills of the next generation is essential to build a stronger economy in a fairer society where everyone can get on in life.”

New town of Northstowe reaching out with new jobs

Building IndustryPlans for a major housing scheme in Cambridgeshire, which will create thousands of new jobs in the trades, have been published this week.

The next phase of a proposed 10,000 house building project in Northstow could go-ahead as local people have now the chance to input into how the development could take shape.

Consultation with the public started on 21 March, and explores an outline plan including the town centre, secondary school, two primary schools and approximately 3,500 new homes as well as two new access roads, employment possibilities and recreational areas.

It follows on from the first 1500 homes and related facilities being developed by Gallagher Estates gaining planning consent in October 2012.

The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), landowner of the airfield part of the development, is proposing to submit three planning applications following the public consultation and are inviting views on each of them. The outline planning application for this next phase of plans covers an area of approximately 159 hectares and in total includes:

  • approximately 3,500 new homes
  • two primary schools, and a secondary school
  • the town centre including employment potential
  • recreation space and landscaped areas
  • a new ‘eastern’ sports hub
  • part of the ‘western’ sports being built along with the first new homes (phase one)
  • up to three primary roads linking to the southern access road and the busway running to the south of the site, engineering and infrastructure works.

The consultation period runs from 21 March until 4 April 2014 and people are invited to give their views about the proposals online at or at a number of locations locally.