New service launched to connect local people with wind energy and construction projects

A new initiative has been launched which will connect suppliers and job seekers with local opportunities at wind energy and construction projects in the New Cumnock area.

Managed by the New Cumnock Development Trust (NCDT), the New Cumnock Local Jobs and Business Register will allow local businesses and individuals to register for updates from projects.

Wind energy and construction projects will be able to keep local people and businesses updated on new opportunities, including job vacancies, procurement openings and tendering processes.

The vision is to create a resource that helps create and sustain opportunities for job seekers, suppliers, developers and communities across East Ayrshire and surrounding areas. It also aims to help the wider community benefit from the local economic boost created from wind energy and similar projects nearby.

The website will list the projects that have signed up to the free service, which is available for businesses and job seekers. It is available for businesses of all types, provided they employ local staff and bring direct benefit to local communities.

The NCDT, in partnership with Brockwell Energy, developed the Register in response to the current social restrictions and economic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Register will be administered by NCDT through donations from Brockwell Energy and other supporting developers.

The project has already attracted support from other developers and contractors such as REG Greenburn Limited and RJ McLeod, one of Scotland’s leading construction contractors.

Susan Kerr, Chair of NCDT said: “We at NCDT are incredibly excited about the launch of the New Cumnock Local Jobs and Business Register and believe it will act as an important resource in supporting the local community and manage opportunities open to the region.

“Coal sustained many of the communities around the New Cumnock wind cluster in the past, and now onshore wind is stepping in to replace coal as a national energy source. While the new projects will not provide the scale of employment opportunities that the coal industry did, efforts should be made to maximise the value that these schemes bring to communities, whenever that is practical.

“The Register is seeking to highlight opportunities, help make connections and publicise these successes when contracts or jobs are placed locally.”

Iain Cockburn, Director at Brockwell Energy said: “We have been pleased to work on this initiative with NCDT. Like most other developers, we are keen that our projects utilise as much local labour and business resources as possible.

“Commitments to this effect are made in the planning process, but there is often limited reporting afterwards of what does happen. This resource will help developers demonstrate the value they actually deliver and encourage and help local job seekers and businesses to position themselves for the opportunities that do arise. Together with REG Greenburn Limited and RJ McLeod, both of whom have a strong track record of local engagement, we are pleased to support this initiative and hope it does encourage more local procurement and recruitment.

“Although specialist skills and large main contractors are often required, local businesses and job seekers should be ideally placed to support many aspects of these projects. What is needed is a focus to make sure connections are made.

“Typically, jobs fairs and Meet-the-Buyer events are held to help source the skills and services needed to deliver infrastructure projects. Hosting these events in the future may be more challenging due to restrictions on public gatherings, so the New Cumnock Local Jobs and Business Register has been developed to help promote these connections.

“We are also keen for other developers to support the scheme and sign up to ensure the Register becomes a valuable resource for the community.”

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