THE 1,000th offshore wind blade has been produced at Vestas Isle of Wight base.

The company celebrated its more than 20-year history at the Island facility, in Newport, with the production of the blade, a V164-9.5 MW blade destined for the 1,075 MW Seagreen offshore wind project being developed by SSE Renewables and Total.

Following its recent re-entry into offshore wind, Vestas has now announced its intentions to further expand its UK offshore wind production footprint, contingent on the success of the company in securing sufficient project volume in an upcoming allocation round.

Vestas is currently investigating the potential of expanding its UK footprint through additional manufacturing and supplier sites across the UK.

It anticipates it could create nearly 2,000 direct jobs across the wind turbine manufacturing supply chain, if successful in securing enough project volume.

Henrik Andersen, president and chief executive of Vestas, said: “With over 20 years in the UK, more than 1,000 V164 blades now produced from the Isle of Wight for UK and European markets, and significant activity on our cutting-edge blades taking place in the UK, we are truly committed to the UK.

"We are extremely proud of the onshore and offshore wind expertise we have built up in the UK and are positive about the market potential."

Vestas recently announced its next-generation turbine, the V236-15.0 MW turbine, which is due to be powered by mammoth 115.5m blades, a world-leading blade length.

The Isle of Wight manufacturing facility has the potential to be expanded for serial production of the 115.5m blades, enabling Vestas to

leverage the wind expertise the company has built up in the UK.

Since 2002, Vestas has manufactured more than 10,000 onshore and offshore blades on the Isle of Wight.

More than £360m worth of blades has been exported for North European offshore wind projects from the Isle of Wight since 2014.

Vestas has also carried out blade technology research and development for its latest turbine blade models on the Isle of Wight for the past 20 years, located at a centre at West Medina Mills.

Vestas currently employs more than 1,500 people in the UK, over 700 of which are employed on the Isle of Wight.