Prime Minister praises role Blyth is playing in green industrial revolution

The Prime Minister has said investment is available in Northumberland to ensure people can secure high-paid and highly-skilled jobs.

Monday, 22nd November 2021, 2:39 pm
Updated Monday, 22nd November 2021, 2:57 pm
Prime Minister Boris Johnson visits Tharsus headquarters in Blyth.

Boris Johnson was visiting the Tharsus factory in Blyth today to see first-hand their work with robotic and automated machinery and talk to a number of their apprentices.

He was also full of praise for other companies bringing highly skilled jobs to the region including ORE Catapult in Blyth, Britishvolt’s gigafactory in nearby Cambois and GE Renewable Energy.

And he said that both private and public sector investment was ensuring growth in high skilled and high waged jobs.

The PM met apprentices during his whistlestop tour of the Blyth factory.

Mr Johnson said: “Here at Tharsus, they employ around 400 people now with the potential for expansion.

"We’re looking to help the region level up.

"No matter how deprived an area may be, there are going to be people who are just as talented and enthusiastic as other parts of the county.

“There is a lot of interest in Blyth at the moment and it’s in a great location for the renewable energy sector.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson walks next to Tharsus CEO Brian Palmer during a visit to their headquarters.

"It’s got the workforce and the skills and the government has a role in bringing them together.

"We’ve invested £26bn nationally in the green industrial revolution and there has been £90bn invested from the private sector.

"The government is trying to be as useful as it can be, but the best indication is coming from the private sector and it’s fantastic to see.”

Concerns had been raised that the region was missing out on potential government investment following last week’s cuts in a number of projects, but Mr Johnson strongly refuted the claims.

He added: “Through the Town’s Fund we’re investing £3.6bn nationally, with £20million of that going to Blyth to regenerate its town centre, including a new hotel.

"We’re investing in hospitals in the area, such as the new sterilisation unit at the hospital in Cramlington, as part of our 40 new hospitals in the county programme.

"The private sector is investing in the region and they wouldn’t be doing that without that kind of investment from ourselves.”

Mr Johnson also refuted claims the north east was being left behind in improvements to the rail network, saying train journey times from Newcastle to London would reduce by 20 minutes, while the reopening of the Northumberland Line was great news for the county.

"That line was closed two generations ago and is now being re-opened,” he said.

"It is great news for residents as they can get from Ashington to the Metro network.

"It is part of our investment in infrastructure.”

Blyth Valley MP Ian Levy was delighted to welcome Mr Johnson back to the constituency for the third time in less than 12 months.

He said: "It was a pleasure to once again welcome the Prime Minister to Blyth Valley and to show him the excellent and innovative work of Tharsus.

“It also gave me the opportunity to update Boris on the progress being made on the Government backed initiatives that will make a difference to residents across Blyth Valley.

“This includes the Northumberland Line with three stations planned for Blyth Valley to complement the existing East Coast Main Line station at Cramlington and the investment that is lined up through the Future High Street Fund and Town Deal.”