Britishvolt has selected a site in the North East of England to build the UK’s first battery gigaplant, which it says will create 3,000 jobs and a further 5,000 in the wider supply chain.
The company has acquired exclusive rights to a site in Blyth Northumberland and intends to begin construction in Summer 2021, with lithium-ion batteries will be in production by the end of 2023.
Total investment for Britishvolt’s gigaplant is £2.6bn, which it says makes it the largest industrial investment in the North East since Nissan’s arrival in 1984 and one of the largest-ever industrial investments in the UK. By the final phase of the project in 2027 it will be employing up to 3,000 highly skilled people, producing over 300,000 lithium-ion batteries for the UK automotive industry. It will further provide up to 5000 jobs in the wider supply chain.
Britishvolt’s gigaplant is widely regarded as being strategically important for the UK automotive industry in order for it to maintain competitive advantage as we accelerate towards an increasingly electrified future. The building of a battery gigaplant is also one of the key pillars of the British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson’s, ten-point plan for the UK’s green recovery and an important step to a Net Zero economy by 2050.
Britishvolt CEO Orral Nadjari said: “We are delighted to have secured this site in Blyth. This is a tremendous moment both for Britishvolt and UK industry. Now we can really start the hard work and begin producing lithium-ion batteries for future electrified vehicles in just three years. It is crucial for the UK automotive industry and for the entire economy that we are able to power the future. The sooner we start, the better.
“Blyth meets all of our exacting requirements and could be tailor made. It is on the doorstep of major transport links, easily accessible renewable energy and the opportunity for a co-located supply chain, meets our target to make our gigaplant the world’s cleanest and greenest battery facility. We have had an extremely warm welcome from Ian Levy MP and Northumberland County Council and are looking forward to working with them closely on this project.”
The Britishvolt gigaplant will be built on a 95-hectare site, formerly the site of the Blyth Power Station. It will use renewable energy, including the potential to use hydro-electric power generated in Norway and transmitted 447 miles under the North Sea via the world’s longest inter-connector from the North Sea Link project.