PM: Heysham 3 will happen

Prime Minister David Cameron (left) talks with David Morris MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale, where they discussed a link road from the M6 to Heysham during a tour of the north east and north west of England. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday December 13, 2013. See PA story POLITICS Cameron. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Prime Minister David Cameron (left) talks with David Morris MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale, where they discussed a link road from the M6 to Heysham during a tour of the north east and north west of England. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday December 13, 2013. See PA story POLITICS Cameron. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

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The Prime Minister has confirmed that a third nuclear power station will be built at Heysham.

Speaking in parliament to Morecambe and Lunesdale MP David Morris, David Cameron said the Heysham M6 Link Road would open up the port and help “when we bring in the new nuclear power station”.

Heysham Port and power stations

Heysham Port and power stations

Mr Morris said it was a case of “when not if” Heysham 3 will come online.

EDF Energy, which runs the current nuclear operation at Heysham, said it remained focused on its plans to build two other nuclear power stations in the UK, but that Heysham had the potential for new development in the future.

A decision on whether to extend the lifetime of Heysham 1 beyond 2019 is expected to be made next year, and Heysham 2 beyond 2023 in 2020. However, EDF said the intention was to extend the lives of the two reactors.

In parliament last week, Mr Morris asked the Prime Minister whether he agreed that Morecambe was “back open for business” following a drop in unemployment and the expected benefits of the Heysham M6 Link Road, due to be completed next summer.

Mr Cameron said in response: “I well remember visiting my hon Friend’s constituency and looking at the very important road works that are going to open up the port, and that are going to help when we bring in the new nuclear power station and all the other steps he wants to see.

“The long-term youth claimant count in his constituency has fallen by 30 per cent in the last year, so those young people are now able to work, and able to benefit from our growing economy.”

The nuclear operation at Heysham employs 1,500 people.

Mr Morris said: “Heysham is number seven of eight sites to be built across the country and it is a case of when not if it is going to be built.

“I have been having regular talks with the Prime Minister, the Chancellor and the Energy Secretary on when this new build may begin.

“I have also been having regular meetings with Andrea Leadsom MP who is the Minster who leads on nuclear power. I am always meeting with companies who build power stations, who are based all over the world. Companies based in France, Japan, China and even Canada to name a few and at the moment it looks as though a modular design station is the most likely to be built in Heysham securing local jobs for the future.

“I think that as Hinkley C is nearing the end of its planning stage then the Ministers are starting to look at sites further down the list.

“I will be doing everything I can to ensure Heysham 3 is built as soon as possible, as I promised in the General Election period, and I am delighted that the Prime Minister is behind my efforts.”

A spokesman for EDF said: “EDF Energy remains focused on its plans to build new nuclear power stations at Hinkley Point C in Somerset and Sizewell C in Suffolk.

“Heysham was included in the government’s National Policy Statement for sites strategically suitable for new nuclear power stations by 2025, and so EDF Energy feels the site has the potential for new nuclear development in the future although the company is focused on its plans for new nuclear, led by construction of a new power station at Hinkley Point C.”