Page 0011

Of the renewable technologies, large

onshore wind is the largest provider of

the UK's renewable electricity, and over

recent years the UK has witnessed record

amounts of capacity being installed.

It is now one of the largest markets in

Europe, second only to Germany in 2013.

As we went to Press, the pipeline of large

onshore wind projects either in construction

or consented is almost as large as the 7,500

MW of capacity already installed, with more

projects awaiting consent decisions.

The supply chain impacts of onshore wind

were extensively analysed in the 2012 report

"Onshore wind: Direct & Wider Economic

Impacts" which concluded that the direct

and supply chain GVA of large onshore wind

could reach £913m in 2020 if 15GW of

capacity is installed.


The report also found that across 18 case

studies, 98% of development costs, 45% of

construction costs and 90% of operation and

maintenance costs were spent in the UK.

Wind turbine tower manufacture makes up a

significant proportion of the UK spend in the

construction phase, with UK suppliers,

Mabey Bridge (based in Chepstow) and

Wind Towers (Scotland) Limited

(Campbeltown) being the largest.

The number of components in the bill of

materials for towers runs into the thousands.

Components for hub control systems and

manufacture of convertors are further examples of UK based manufacturing activity and

trade association RenewableUK now regularly maps UK manufacturing activity in its

annual state of the industry reports.

To maintain and increase the UK content,

RenewableUK has recently launched a good

practice guide that sets out guidance to

suppliers wishing to enter or expand into the

sector and to developers seeking to maximize

local content.

The guidance outlines and introduces the

development process to those new to the

sector; it covers technical, health and safety

requirements and provides advice for developers and primary

contractors on how to

scope out local opportunities and create

networks with the local business community.

Case studies highlight that local contracts

can easily account for a third or more of the

construction budget. Realising and even

exceeding this figure where possible is at the

top of the industry's agenda.

It is important to recognise also that the UK

continues to be a world leader in small wind

turbine manufacturing with many companies

manufacturing and exporting more systems

than any other country.

Larger employers include Gaia Wind in

Glasgow, Ampair in Milbourne St Andrew in

Dorset, Evance in Loughborough, and

Marlec in Corby. In July 2013 Endurance

announced that they have commenced

manufacture of a 225KW medium wind turbine in Kidderminster

and ACSA announced

plans to manufacture its 225KW turbine in

Toonebridge, Northern Ireland.

For pipeline information:







Photos courtesy

RenewableUK, left, at

the Mabey Bridge facility, and, below,


access to a Vestas

turbine. RenewableUK

has launched a good

practice guide to help

suppliers enter the

market and developers

maximise local content.


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