After the meeting of the Tees Valley Combined Authority on Thursday, Bill Scott OBE, chief executive of Wilton Engineering described the unanimous vote for the plan and content of it as “amazing”.
“I was so pleased to see the public turnout at the meeting and people said what they wanted to say and didn’t hold back, which was good,” he told Tees Business.
“We have needed councillors to put forward their challenge along the way, it’s really important because it gives a balance, and I think they have identified the plan in its entirety. It includes the airport and I think it’s a really good thing for Teesside.”
In terms of the plan’s implications for his own business and the area, Scott said: “It’s not a surprise that offshore wind is one of the largest-growing energy sectors at the moment.
“Getting a company of Equinor’s size and stature to put a footprint in Teesside is amazing.
“You are talking about a £3.2bn project. Dogger Bank is basically the largest offshore wind project in the world, and it is right outside the mouth of our river.
“I think it’s about 200 miles in a straight line. To get those guys to come and put a footprint in Teesside is just amazing.”
Scott would now like to see some unique trade routes developed at Durham Tees Valley Airport.
He added: “I understand there are 10 routes planned – I would love to see what they are and would love to see some kind of trade routes to Copenhagen, Hamburg and, possibly, to Madrid.
“One to Oslo as well, something like that. I think if we can offer something other people don’t do, get that connectivity into the North-east, that would be fantastic.
“As a company, we go to Germany quite often, Poland, Italy, Nigeria and America, so we travel a lot.”
On politics being set aside to agree the plan, Scott added: “It was absolutely necessary.
“It wasn’t about whether it was blue, red, yellow, green or white with pink dots on it. It was about what’s right for Teesside, and the vote is just amazing.”