ENGINEERING company SLP is starting a contract on a North Sea gas platform at the former Amec shipyard on Tyneside which will create 100 jobs.
And the Surrey company is considering bringing another contract to the site in Wallsend, North Tyneside, which would create at least 200 jobs.
The second project partly hinges on SLP being able to strike a deal to remain at the site, which is currently owned by marine giants Shepherd Offshore.
SLP chairman Dennis Clark said: “The UK is no longer self-sufficient when it comes to gas, but platforms like this make a huge contribution to self-sufficiency.
“We are delighted to be able to do this work and bring it to Tyneside, and our plan is to try and bring more work in the future. “We do have another project in the pipeline for another platform, and it is our intention to build it on Tyneside.”
The current contract, which will complete in August, is to build a gas platform which is destined for the southern sector of the North Sea, off the cost of Great Yarmouth. Mr Clark said discussions were continuing over the continued use of the Wallsend site. He added: “Lawyers have been instructed and we are in discussions. The second contract is dependant on being able to use the site, so we hope we can reach an agreement and bring this work to Tyneside.”
SLP is also a specialist manufacturer of towers for offshore wind farms and its arrival in the region follows Shepherd Offshore’s announcement of plans for a renewable energy centre of excellence on Tyneside.
Shepherd has lodged plans with Newcastle City Council to build a factory in Walker, Newcastle to make the blades of wind turbines. It is hoped the wider initiative would create up to 6,000 jobs directly and indirectly.