31
MAR

An historic moment for the city and people of Hull

So finally it has come. After years of waiting, rumour, more waiting, further rumour and yet more waiting, just over a month ago Siemens agreed to build its wind turbine manufacturing plant in Hull.

It is a historic event in the narrative of a city which in the past was devastated by the loss of the fishing industry and the automation of dock work, leaving men unemployed and their children with little hope for the future.

But now we stand on the cusp of a great transformation in the region’s fortunes with the promise of thousands of long term, skilled jobs bringing prosperity in their wake.
And, with the City of Culture bid secured for 2017 and a Premiership football team to boot, Hull is enjoying a renaissance the likes of which it has never experienced before in its history.
But it is not just the Siemens deal which will secure the Humber’s fortunes as the UK’s hub for the renewable energy industry. Other developments such as the Hornsea One wind field, due to be developed by Dong Energy and forecast to generate up to a gigawatt of power once complete, are likely to create further jobs across the region.

Although Rix Sea Shuttle is just over one year old, it is part of the J.R. Rix & Sons group of companies which has been associated with the shipping industry for nearly 140 years. During that time the company has traded through the good times and the bad and has survived down five generations through innovation, investment and cutting its cloth according to the business climate.

We were one of the first companies in East Yorkshire to invest in the anticipation of the renewables revolution, through the creation of the sea shuttle division, believing it was the right industry for the city and the wider region, and the right move for J.R. Rix & Sons.

Now we run a fleet of three crew transfer vessels, which take engineers and equipment to and from offshore wind turbines, and have two more on order which are due to be delivered this later year, representing an investment figure in the region of £7.5m straight into this exciting and burgeoning sector.
And with contracts wins firmly under our belt this has proved to be a wise and timely move. Siemens’ announcement maybe go down in history as the catalyst for a whole host of other companies choosing to locate their renewable energy projects on the Humber, making the region to clean energy what Aberdeen is to gas and oil. It is a wave on which we are prepared to ride all the way.

It is with that in mind that I and everyone else at J.R. Rix & Sons were delighted by the successful completion of the Siemens deal. It had us on the edge of our seats for many months, but the important thing was it went the right way and congratulations must go to everyone who had a hand in achieving that.
As for the future, our investment in this industry will grow, ensuring that the prosperity we gain from it is shared among the community at large through employing local people and by supporting local charities, business schemes and events.

The truth is this announcement could not have come at a better time for the Humber region, the city of Hull and the wider East Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire community. Never before has an opportunity with such potential to totally transform the fortunes of the region presented itself and now more than ever, we are equipped to take full advantage of it.
For the city we love it is a dream come true, and no one is more pleased than us that this historic day has finally come to pass. Over the past century J.R. Rix & Sons has seen Hull prosper and seen it in decline, but it is our belief that the new era the renewables industry heralds proves the best is yet to come.