Inch Cape offshore substation assembly and fit-out kicks-off at Wallsend yard

The assembly and fit-out of the offshore substation platform and jacket foundation for the 1.1 gigawatt (GW) Inch Cape Offshore Wind has now kicked off at the Smulders yard in Wallsend, Newcastle.

A consortium of Siemens Energy and Iemants, a Smulders subsidiary, is responsible for the delivery of the offshore substation for the Scottish project located 15 kilometres off the Angus coast. Siemens Energy is also responsible for the design and construction of the project’s onshore substation in Cockenzie, East Lothian

The work at the Wallsend yard will include the fit-out and assembly of the platform, which will use Siemens Energy’s Offshore Transformer Module (OTM®) technology, and its jacket foundation.

A team of more than 250 local employees will work on the project which will take approximately 18 months to complete, before transportation by sea for installation at the wind farm site expected in 2025.

Work has already started on Inch Cape’s 2.6 hectare onshore substation, located on the site of the former Cockenzie Power Station and in close proximity to the existing transmission network connection.

Inch Cape is owned by Inch Cape Offshore Wind Limited, a joint venture company held equally by Red Rock Power and ESB.

Topside deck load-in at Smulders’ Wallsend yard, Newcastle, UK

Screening opinion received from Marine Directorate on temporary cofferdam

Inch Cape has received the screening opinion from the Marine Directorate confirming the application to use a temporary cofferdam during the installation of the export cable would not need an environmental impact assessment (EIA).

The project team applied for a screening opinion having found that a temporary cofferdam may be required for additional works at the Cockenzie landfall site and for the installation of its export cables. A cofferdam would provide a safe working area and protection for the works set to take place within the intertidal zone.

Full details of the proposal as well as the feedback from the Marine Directorate can be found in the published Screening Opinion under the Marine Works (Environmental Impact Assessment) (Scotland) Regulations 2017h.

The next steps for the process will be the submissions of an application for a marine licence for the works before the end of 2023.

The pre-application public consultation on the temporary cofferdam has concluded however further consultation will be carried out with statutory stakeholders through the application process.

This screening opinion follows two other approvals received by the project from the Scottish Ministers in 2023 including a variation to the offshore transmission works marine licence received in August and a variation to the Section 36 consent and generating station marine licence received in June 2023.

An application for a new marine licence for additional landfall works was also submitted to the Marine Directorate in August 2023

Inch Cape Offshore Limited selects Vestas as preferred supplier for wind turbine package

Inch Cape Offshore Limited, the joint venture between Red Rock Power Limited (RRPL) and ESB, has appointed Vestas as the preferred wind turbine supplier for the 1.1 GW Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm.

The project will feature 72 V236-15.0 MW turbines, and the agreement also includes a 15-year Operations and Maintenance (O&M) contract.

A spokesperson for the Inch Cape Wind Farm said, This is another important step in the development of the Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm, which will be Scotland’s largest single source of renewable power when commissioned. Vestas brings a wealth of international experience and we look forward to working with the team to deliver this significant project.”

Inch Cape Offshore Limited secured a Contract for Difference in the UK’s fourth CfD allocation round, which concluded on 07 July 2022, and recently announced the Renewables Hub at the Port of Dundee as its intended pre-assembly site and the Port of Montrose as the project’s O&M base.

Port of Dundee Renewables Hub Selected as pre-assembly base for construction of Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm

Project reserves custom-built facility at Port of Dundee for pre-assembly and marshalling of wind turbines

Inch Cape Offshore Limited has selected the Port of Dundee as the pre-assembly and marshalling site for the construction of the 1.1 gigawatt (GW) Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm, which will be one of Scotland’s largest offshore wind projects when commissioned later this decade.  The agreement will see turbine blades, towers and nacelles, which house the turbine generators, being delivered to and pre-assembled at the port’s Renewables Hub before being shipped out for installation 12km off the Angus coast.

Dundee has been chosen after a competitive selection process due to its proximity to the project site, coupled with its unrivalled storage and assembly capacity and purpose-built quayside facilities.

The offshore wind project will be Scotland’s largest single source of renewable power when built and will feature the tallest turbines ever deployed in Scottish waters, with consent for tip heights of up to 291 metres.

Inch Cape Offshore Limited has reserved the entire Renewables Hub at the port, equivalent to 28 football pitches, from March 2025 to March 2026, with around 50 staff expected to be on site over that time.

Adam Ezzamel, Project Director, said, “Inch Cape will be the largest offshore wind project built in Scotland, and we are delighted to be working with the Port of Dundee on the construction phase of this exciting development.

“The port is ideally-sited for our construction operation and offers us the area we require for the number – and sheer scale – of the turbines we will be deploying.

“Offshore construction is a specialist area and the Port of Dundee offers us a management team with the experience and capability to deal with the logistical challenges that have to be managed during our construction phase.

“After successfully securing a Contract for Difference earlier this summer, this latest contract award is another important step towards us delivering the project – and generating low cost, renewable power for consumers across Great Britain.”

David Webster, Director of Energy at Forth Ports (owner of the Port of Dundee), said, “This is a very significant project for The Port of Dundee as we establish Forth Ports as the partner of choice for the renewable energy sector in Scotland.

“We have built Scotland’s only custom-built renewables hub at the port which, when coupled with Dundee’s proximity to the project site in the North Sea and the natural deep waters of the Tay, makes the port ideally suited to the requirements of this major contract for Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm.”

Councillor John Alexander, Leader of Dundee City Council said, “The Port of Dundee is an incredibly important asset, not only for the city but for the renewables sector more generally. It’s strategically very well placed to support and deliver key pieces of the infrastructure that the UK will require in the future.

“Today’s announcement is a clear vote of confidence in the quality of the infrastructure here and I’m delighted that Inch Cape has selected Dundee as a critical part of the delivery of the largest offshore windfarm in Scotland.

“The scale of this project is unrivalled, with a level of ambition which is set to redefine offshore wind. Inch Cape’s success is our success, and everyone benefits from the delivery of this 72-turbine project so I’m very much looking forward to seeing the Port continuing to be a hub for this type of activity.”

Forth Ports Wind Farms
For more information see press release
Pic Peter Devlin

Adam Ezzamel, Project Director (centre) with Councillor John Alexander, Leader, Dundee City Council (left) and David Webster, Director of Energy at Forth Ports (right).

Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm Event to Highlight Opportunities for Local Businesses

East Lothian businesses are being invited to attend an event to find out more about the business opportunities from the building of the Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm onshore and offshore substations.

This event will highlight the wide range of opportunities for local firms on the construction, transportation and installation of the project’s onshore and offshore substations, with work expected to start on site early next year.

Speakers will include Duncan Humphries, Package Manger – Substations, Inch Cape Offshore Limited, and Jason Horsfall and Colette Flynn from Siemens Energy Limited, the company responsible for the design and build of the project’s onshore substation at Cockenzie.

Speaking ahead of the event, Nikki Keddie, the project’s stakeholder manager said:

“Having secured the long-term contract for power that we needed to proceed with the project, we are now proceeding with major contract awards ahead of starting work onshore in early 2023.

“It’s important to us to highlight the opportunities for local businesses from the project and we hope East Lothian firms will take this opportunity to hear more about the huge range of services we are likely to require during construction and beyond.”

The event is being held at Musselburgh Racecourse on Tuesday 13 September.


Click here to register

Inch Cape Offshore Limited Secures Contract for Difference

Responding to the announcement that Inch Cape Offshore Limited has secured a Contract for Difference, Adam Ezzamel, Project Director, said:

“This is an important milestone for the project, and testament to the great work of team which has completely re-engineered the wind farm over the last two years.

“Their work has resulted in a project with significantly greater output and a lower cost of energy, ensuring that we were able to submit a successful bid to the auction.

“Our focus now moves to the contracting of key work packages and progressing towards a final investment decision by the middle of next year.”

Inch Cape Appoints Siemens Energy and lemants Consortium to Deliver Onshore and Offshore Substations

Inch Cape Offshore Limited, the 50/50 joint venture between ESB and Red Rock Power Limited, has appointed Siemens Energy and lemants, subsidiary of Smulders, for the supply and build of its onshore and offshore substation package.

Siemens Energy will design and build the onshore substation, which will be sited at the former power station site at Cockenzie, East Lothian.  Early onsite works are expected to commence early 2023  following engagement with the local supply chain.

Siemens Energy and lemants will supply the wind farm’s offshore substation platform, using Siemens Energy’s proven Offshore Transformer Module (OTM®) technology. Fit-out and assembly of the OTM and its jacket foundation will take place at the Smulders yard in Wallsend, Newcastle.

Commenting on the plans, Adam Ezzamel, Inch Cape’s Project Director said:

“The substation package is a critical element of the project and we’re looking forward to working with Siemens Energy and lemants following their selection.

“Today’s announcement is an important milestone for the project ahead of the CfD results next week.”

Mark Pilling, Vice President HV Grids at Siemens Energy, said:

“The award of this contract is another step towards the UK achieving its target of 50GW of offshore wind by 2030.

“I’m incredibly proud of Siemens Energy and our partner Iemants.  It is important that we support our customers by building innovative infrastructure that enables clean energy to be delivered to our homes and businesses across the country.

“Siemens Energy has a strong record of delivering offshore wind farm projects in Scotland and we will be actively working with Iemants and Inch Cape Offshore Limited to engage with the local supply chain on potential contract opportunities.”

John Muir Way – Temporary diversion – February 28 to March 4

Walkers on the John Muir Way should look out for a temporary diversion around the site of the former Cockenzie Power Station for five days, from Monday February 28 to Friday 4th March.

The diversion will occur towards the end of a three-week programme of site investigation at the Cockenzie site which starts Monday [14 Feb].  This work is being carried out by Inch Cape Offshore Limited, which is developing an offshore wind farm off the Angus coast, to test ground conditions for their planned electricity substation.

The work will involve drilling boreholes over the site, as well as digging some trial trenches on a small section of the John Muir Way next to the seawall where export cables from the wind farm will eventually be installed.

“The diversion will be signposted a week in advance and will apply to the section which runs from around Cockenzie Harbour along the seawall towards the Hummocks,” explains Nikki Keddie, Stakeholder Manager at Inch Cape.

“We hope this will not prove too much of disruption to walkers and we will reinstate the original route following the completion of works on March 4,” Nikki concludes.

The Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm, currently in late-stage development, will see up to 72 turbines located 15 km off the Angus Coast and connect to the National Grid at Cockenzie. Once complete, it will be one of Scotland’s largest single sources of renewable energy and power up to one million homes with clean electricity.

Please see below for a map of the proposed diversion.

Inch Cape selects Montrose Port as offshore wind operations and maintenance base

Inch Cape Offshore Limited has selected Montrose Port as the future operations and maintenance base for its offshore wind farm – which will see up to 72 turbines located 15 km off the Angus coast.

The wind farm, owned by Red Rock Power and ESB, will create an initial £5.2 million investment and more than 50 long-term skilled jobs during its lifetime.

The decision was marked by a visit to Montrose Port by local MSP Mairi Gougeon, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and Islands at The Scottish Government, where she was able to meet senior figures from Inch Cape and Montrose Port to discuss their plans.

The Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm has applied to the UK Government for a long-term energy contract in its latest ‘Contracts for Difference’ allocation round, with results expected this summer.

If successful, this will trigger the18-month £multi-million investment programme in the Angus port with more than 50 long term skilled operations and maintenance jobs to follow.

Initial work on the infrastructure upgrade will begin in 2023 with the construction of offices and warehouse at the port’s South Quay.

A dedicated pontoon for crew transfer vessels travelling to and from the Inch Cape site will also be constructed along with the installation of dock side cranes and a communications mast, with the latest technologies in vessel fuelling being considered as an additional investment.

Works are expected to be complete and the base operational by early 2025 to coincide with the commissioning of the first turbines at the offshore wind farm. Once fully operational, the Montrose base will support up to 56 direct, full-time equivalent (FTE), long-term jobs including turbine technicians, asset managers and office staff.

Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougeon said:

“This award highlights the direct long-term economic benefits which are flowing into local communities across Scotland as a result of our fast-growing offshore wind industry. The Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm, which will provide sustainable career-long jobs for people in Angus, is a great example of this.

“Montrose Port has long played an important role in supporting Scotland’s offshore energy sector and the investment announced by Inch Cape will help it become a major facility supporting our just transition towards a Net Zero economy.”

Adam Ezzamel, Project Director of the Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm said:

“This new infrastructure will make Montrose Port a key element in the Inch Cape Offshore Wind Farm, which will become one of Scotland’s largest single sources of renewable power, operational for at least 30 years. We plan to utilise the very latest technology to reduce carbon emissions from vessels to operational base designs, operating and maintaining some of the biggest wind turbines in the world deployed in water depths of up to 57 metres.

“If we succeed in the current Contracts for Difference round, Inch Cape will deliver millions of pounds of new investment, not just in Montrose but, with other key suppliers and facilities in Scotland and beyond, supporting local communities and a transition to a greener economy. The UK is already a world leader in offshore wind and this project will see Inch Cape increase this lead – delivering long-term skilled jobs and enough electricity to power more than a million homes.”

Capt. Tom Hutchison, CEO and Harbourmaster at Montrose Port said:

“We are delighted to welcome Inch Cape to Montrose as part of our growing offshore wind portfolio. We aim to become the go-to port for the industry and believe that with our geographical position, deep water berths, and sheltered quays we are ideally placed to do so.

“As a Trust Port we are driven to develop our offering to benefit our community of stakeholders both now and for future generations to come. We have already started to see the benefits offshore wind can bring to our regional economy and we are proud to be championing Montrose and the wider Angus region as a bastion for green energy.”

Adam Ezzamel, Project Director, Mairi Gougeon MSP, Capt. Tom Hutchison, Harbourmaster

Inch Cape Offshore Limited – operational update

In the next few days, weather permitting, East Lothian residents may see the arrival of a jack-up vessel, operated by contractors Fugro, which will begin a programme of near-shore survey work not far from the coast at Cockenzie on behalf of Inch Cape Offshore Limited.

The information gathered will be used to inform detailed design work and ultimately the construction process.  The wind farm will be Scotland’s largest single source of renewable power when built, with up to 72 turbines generating the equivalent of the annual demand of more than 1 million homes.

Image: Fugro