Offshore wind transforming communities

Grimsby: turning the tide

The people of Grimsby explain how offshore wind
is transforming their town.

David Ornsby

David is the seventh generation of his family to work in Grimsby after one of his ancestors was attracted to the area by the fishing industry.


“Grimsby is a place that has always seemed to attract pioneering people: people with the spirit to change the future.”

Dennis Avery

Dennis is now retired after a career in the fishing industry but would get back on the water tomorrow if he could.


“I first took this ship in 1975 and I was here until 1983 until it all packed up. Everything was geared toward the fishing industry, and when the fishing industry went into decline, that was it. Grimsby didn’t exist.”

Rob Walsh

Chief Executive, North East Lincolnshire Council

“Grimsby’s legacy is a fantastic fishing heritage, but we’ve had to come out of that and think differently…we’ve set about creating a new vision for Grimsby and the Humber region, and part of that vision is around offshore wind and renewable energy. So, I think green energy is our answer for the next 30-50 years.”

Lauren Little

Lauren grew up in Grimsby and is excited about continuing the family legacy on the docks.


“One day we had a lecture, it was about how offshore wind was growing and developing in the Newcastle area and how it was regenerating the town. That’s when I started to look into careers in this sector and saw there was a great future for Grimsby and lots of careers to aspire to for a young person like me.”

Courtney Doughty

Courtney wanted to stay in Grimsby after school and is already emerging as an ambitious engineer.


“I’d like to stay within Ørsted because green energy isn't going to disappear anytime soon, and it’s a company that is going to stay around for a long time.”

Jayden Donnelly

Jayden has always wanted to study engineering and is looking forward to putting his lessons into action on the turbines.


“For me, I was just interested in engineering and wind turbines. It was the route for me to go down. That’s why I got into it.”

Ash Hedges

Ash joined Orsted after 12 years in the Royal Navy. He uses his operational experience in his current role.


“The most attractive thing for me was the work life balance, so I can be at home every night to see my family. And Ørsted’s vision is “let’s create a world that runs entirely on green energy” and I’m really proud to be part of that. If I can make a small impact into that, and it carries on with my children, then why would I not want to do this job?”

Emma Toulson

Emma Toulson was born in Grimsby and moved away but was drawn back to the area while studying at university. She has been living in the region for the past eight years.


"Our people live and work in the community. And if they’re living in the local community and they’re earning money in their roles in this industry, then of course they’re spending that money in the local shops, and local services in their leisure time. So it’s a whole broader benefit of what the industry is bringing to this town.”

Steve Hall

Steve, owns a café and catering company in Grimsby. 

“The day we opened, it was me and three members of staff…We’ve now three different sites with 23 employees, so we’re growing quite a bit and a lot of that is directly due to the offshore wind industry…there’s definitely an impact there.”

Will Douglas

Will is the director of Docks Beers in Grimsby. He and his partners were outgrowing their existing site and saw the business potential in Grimsby.


“10 years ago, it would not have been possible to do what we’ve done here and open a brewery…I think, within the next three years, this square mile of Grimsby near the docks is going to be virtually unrecognisable.”

Melanie Onn

Member of Parliament for Great Grimsby 2015-2019
Deputy Chief Executive, RenewableUK

Melanie is a born and bred Grimbarian who is very proud of her roots and the local community.


“Grimsby is becoming well known now as a leader in this area of technology and expertise and it probably would not have happened if we hadn’t seen offshore wind come to the area. It is the place people want to come, whether they’re coming from London or coming from America…this is where they want to come. This is where they want to see how transformational a change can be from one industry.”

Kurt Christensen

Kurt Christensen’s family wasn’t keen on him going to sea but he overcame reservations to start his own business using his fishing knowledge to help offshore wind farm companies.


“Here's my advice: if wind power is coming to your town, grab it with both hands. You will be rewarded. It’s a fascinating ride.”

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