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The OEA attends RenewableUK Global Offshore Wind: Coming of Age

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Recently, the Offshore Energy Alliance, the supply chain cluster for North Wales, led by Dr Debbie Jones and Ffion Davies of M-SParc, visited the Global Offshore Wind: Coming of Age event at Manchester Central on the 18th and 19th of June, 2024.

A Tour of Hutchinson’s Manufacturing Facility 

On Monday (17/06), Hutchinson hosted a behind-the-scenes tour of their industry-leading manufacturing facility to a number of companies. Attendees were introduced to an in-depth look at Hutchinson’s operations and cutting-edge technologies and was an interactive experience.  

It was great to see so many company representatives asking questions, engaging with Hutchinson’s experts and learning about their manufacturing and engineering processes. We hoped that everyone had left with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the innovative work being done at their site! 

Day 1: Highlighting the Region’s Strengths and Opportunities 

It was a busy first day – but that’s what made it a good one! We hosted a mini panel session featuring our five Topic Champions, who were questioned about the challenges and the opportunities presented by the offshore wind sector. The session covered some key areas such as the supply chain, skills development, maritime and vessels, ports, advanced manufacturing, and innovation. 

The discussions were insightful and inspiring, addressing the challenges we face while also identifying the opportunities for growth and collaboration. The panel session was a great way to gain an insight into the progress we’ve already made in the offshore wind sector in North Wales and the North West, but also highlighted that there is so much more to do – and our Topic Champions are helping us lead the way in doing so! 

  • Hutchinson – supply chain development 
  • North Wales Regional Skills Partnership – skills in North Wales 
  • AMRC Cymru – advanced manufacturing and innovation 
  • Bibby Marine – maritime and vessels 
  • ABP – Ports 

Day 2: Engaging Conversations and Networking 

The second day of GOW was equally as engaging. Attendees had the chance to meet and chat with representatives from Ambition North Wales and AMRC Cymru at our stand. Dan and Matthew were busy chatting to individuals with a genuine interest in their roles and how they support the offshore wind sector, as well at The Offshore Energy Alliance. 

We also hosted a “Smoothies and Networking” session! It was great to see so many people showing a genuine interest in the cluster’s initiatives as well as some positive feedback on the cluster’s growth over the past couple of years. 

Reflecting and Looking Forward 

Being at Global Offshore Wind with The Offshore Energy Alliance reinforced the importance of the role of the cluster for the local communities across North Wales and the North West.  

The offshore wind sector is key to reaching our net zero ambitions and creating positive economic benefits and contributions to communities. There is work to be done to maximise these benefits and unlock the barriers but we’re looking forward to playing our role in achieving this!  

See you at next year’s GOW! 

Cluster Up!

Discuss with Ffion how you can get involved with future events and opportunities.

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Tom Burke

Digital Innovation Manager

Tom used to work at the KFC in his hometown of Colwyn Bay before it mysteriously burned down. He then spent several years “on the lam” in East Germany, where he worked as an animator in Berlin. When the wall fell, Tom came home.

He enjoys climbing and hates ice-skating.