Wind Turbine

Renewable energy company Ørsted has pledged more than £60,000 to help support NHS workers and local foodbanks on the East Coast as the fight against COVID-19 continues.

The company, which has its East Coast Hub operations facility on Grimsby Royal Docks and a site in Brightlingsea, has announced donations of £20,000 to both the Health Tree Foundation and the WISHH Charity, (Working Independently to Support Hull Hospitals). In addition, £15,000 is being donated to the Colchester & Ipswich Hospitals Charity.

The Health Tree Foundation works in partnership with the Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust to support workers at three hospitals across North and North East Lincolnshire and the East Riding of Yorkshire. The Foundation aims to improve the hospitals themselves, support treatment research, specialist medical training, and install state-of-the-art equipment and community services across the region.

WISHH is an independent charity which supports the development of facilities, services and equipment at Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital, for the benefit of patients and visitors alike.

Colchester & Ipswich Hospitals Charity supports the work of the East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust and its staff. The charity recently launched an appeal to specifically aid the welfare and wellbeing of staff during the Coronavirus crisis.

Ørsted’s East Coast sites have also chosen to donate a total of £5,000 to assist the vital work of local foodbanks run by Rock Foundation, Hull Foodbank and £1,000 to support the Colchester Foodbank at Brightlingsea.

Clare Woodward, Charity Manager at The Health Tree Foundation, said: “The Health Tree Foundation has been overwhelmed with the offers of help and support we have received lately.  This most generous gift from our local friends at Ørsted will be put to immediate and practical use, across our three hospital sites and community services, to support staff and patients through the most unprecedentedly challenging time.”

Sue Lockwood, Chairman of Hull Hospitals official charity WISHH, said: “This generous support will enable us to enhance provision of facilities for staff at both Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital, to support the overall wellbeing of staff both now and in the future. Staff across both hospitals have faced major changes as wards have being reconfigured to provide increased intensive care provision, and specific wards designated to care for patients suspected or diagnosed with Covid-19.  All hospital staff from across the Trust have stepped up to the challenge, dealing with many things outside of their normal routine dealing with new situations and in some cases providing end of life care.  It is important we support their wellbeing too.  This kind and extremely generous donation from Ørsted will enable us to achieve this by enhancing our wellbeing provision.”

Nick Hulme, Chief Executive of East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We have been overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity shown towards the NHS during the COVID-19 outbreak. This donation from Ørsted will make a huge difference to the way we can support our hardworking NHS staff, both during and after the pandemic.”

Pam Hodge, CEO at Rock Foundation, said: “At this time of unprecedented national crisis, the need to pull together as a community to help each other through has never been greater. We are so grateful that Ørsted pulling together with us in this way, as we seek to serve some of the neediest people in our community.”

Russ Barlow, Manager, Hull Foodbank, said: “We are so grateful to Ørsted for their donation at such a difficult time for charities and the people they support.  As we continue to help people, by supplying emergency food parcels to those in need, the support from Ørsted is a valuable resource helping our work to carry on through the crisis.”

Darren Ramshaw, Head of UK East Operations at Ørsted, said: “The need to support our communities, families and friends is even more important at this time. As a company, we pride ourselves on being an integral part of the community here on the East Coast, so we wanted to do something to support the amazing healthcare providers and workers in their crucial role to helping battle this crisis.”

Ørsted operates five offshore wind farms on the East Coast – Westermost Rough, Lincs, Race Bank, Gunfleet Sands and Hornsea One.

Hornsea Two is currently under construction and will be joining the East Coast portfolio in 2022. Once complete, all six sites will bring the total capacity up to 3.9 GW, enough to power well over 3.5 million homes across the UK.

The company will also be supporting charities and foodbanks on the West Coast (Barrow, Merseyside & Northwich) where it operates a further six offshore windfarms and a waste-to-energy facility. Donations are also being made to support workers at Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospital and Westminster Foodbank, in London.