Not many get the opportunity to see an offshore wind farm up close, but during May we hosted a full week of taking VIPs and employees (also VIPs!) out to Galloper Offshore Wind Farm to experience it for themselves.
Throughout the week we took 87 people, over ten trips to the wind farm which is located roughly 20 miles from the Galloper operations and maintenance base in Harwich.
We were delighted to welcome visitors from National Grid, Ofgem and Freeport East. As well as Harwich and North Essex MP Sir Bernard Jenkin and Clacton MP Giles Watling, along with Essex County Councillor Lesley Wagland, Tendring District Councillor Nick Turner and Harwich Town Councillor Ivan Henderson.
Sir Bernard Jenkin MP said: “This was not just a great day out, but an education: about how the wind industry is developing a scale and efficiency that makes wind power more and more relevant to our clean energy future.”
Following a thorough safety briefing, visitors geared up in full PPE before heading out onto the pontoon and starting the 4 hour round trip out to the wind farm on our crew transfer vessel. Once out at the wind farm they got to view the 180m tall turbines right from sea level and were taken as close as they could be, with the vessel ‘pushing on’ to the access ladder. Our visitors were shown our offshore substation which collects all the electricity from our turbines and sends it along our export cables. There was plenty of opportunity for some impressive photographs and the Galloper leads explained every aspect of the wind farm, answering any of our guests’ queries.
Many of the hundreds of people who work in offshore wind for RWE don’t have roles that require trips out to the wind farm, so this was a great opportunity for them to witness first-hand what they have a part in developing, building or maintaining. Over 27 new starters and 26 other employees from teams such as Entity & Governance, Design & Implementation, Engineering and Communications visited the wind farm, as well as team members from neighbouring development projects North Falls and Five Estuaries.
“It was so great to see you all and have this wonderful exceptional opportunity!” – RWE employee from Offshore Development.
“Thank you for giving me the opportunity to join one of your offshore tours today. It was really interesting and informative, and I got some great photos. We were so lucky with the weather too and it was also good to meet other members of the RWE Team.” – Heidi Turnbull, Economic Growth Officer, Tendring District Council.
We enjoyed taking visitors out to show them what we get to experience every day. We hope that people found it useful and gave them a greater understanding of the wind farm and how it works as well as how offshore wind delivers clean energy, contributing to the UK’s net zero targets.