When news happens text pix and video to 80360. Start your message with BE then leave a space.
RNLI: New £11.12m scheme will create 90 jobs
9:01am Monday 14th January 2013 in News
THE RNLI has welcomed Poole council’s decision to give its new boat-building centre the green light.
The scheme approved by Poole planners will enable the charity to bring its all-weather lifeboat production in-house, securing the future of its boat-building and maintenance.
It will be built on land at the depot in West Quay Road already owned by the charity and will create 90 new jobs in Poole with a further 25 filled by existing staff.
Estimated to cost £11.2million, it will save the charity £3.7m a year once it is up and running. The centre is expected to pay for itself in less than 10 years.
“We need to make the best use of all donations we receive, so once we saw the benefits of bringing the work in-house, and as there are fewer and fewer boat builders able to work to our very specific requirements, we knew we had to go ahead – even in the current economic climate,” said RNLI chief executive Paul Boissier.
“We’ll be our own customer and so have a guaranteed order book – planning for our lifeboat requirements means we’ll need to build six new all-weather lifeboats annually for the next 20 years.”
He said efficiency savings had raised £6.2m for the project but they needed to fundraise for the remaining £5m.
“We must succeed because being unsure of our future lifeboat supply is not an option,” he said. “We need tight control of production over the long-term, and we have a duty to guarantee the quality of our lifeboats – lifeboats that our volunteer crews rely on every time they launch to save others.”
Planning committee chairman Cllr Phil Eades said: “I am pleased that the planning committee was able to give this development their unanimous support. The proposal will create significant new jobs, demonstrate a commitment to a quality building and a continued investment in Poole creating a modern boat building facility and a right of way through their site linking Asda with Whittles Way.”
Old buildings will be cleared from the site, the sea wall rebuilt and the site raised to comply with flood defence requirements before the two new large buildings are constructed. The Shannon class all-weather lifeboats will be the first to be built.