Centre helps Michael find his dream job

Father-of-two Michael Montgomery has a new career as an offshore wind turbine inspection technician thanks to the Centre.

His original college qualification 20 years ago was in engineering, fabrication, assembly and manufacturing with an initial plan of working offshore.

It did not work out and in recent years and he ended up in technical field sales and business development, with the last few years spent in the maritime industry attending vessels, checking data and systems.

Within two days of completing his East of England Offshore Wind Skills Centre transition course, 39-year-old Michael joined leading energy services provider 3sun Group, as a turbine inspection technician working on the company’s new £2.5m contract for the East Anglia ONE offshore wind farm.

“I can’t believe it. I finished the course on Tuesday, had an interview with 3sun on Thursday and started on Friday. The course has taken me where I want and need to be.”

The three-week transition was launched to develop a pipeline of skilled technicians to work in the growing offshore wind industry. It is aimed at people with existing technical qualifications who want to transfer them to the offshore wind industry.

It includes an introduction; working at height, basic safety training, basic technical training, slinger banksman, confined space working, sea survival, first aid, fire awareness and manual handling.

Michael, who lives at Stalham with his wife and 11-year-old son and eight-year-old daughter, said he “enjoyed every minute” of the three-week course which helped him towards his “dream job.”

“My grandad was a fisherman in Great Yarmouth and the void left in the town following the decline of fishing was filled by the oil and gas industry, so I was very aware from an early age about the potential job opportunities available right on my doorstep.

I never stopped looking for ways to kick start my engineering career and with the arrival of the offshore renewable energy industry on the east coast, these opportunities have become far more readily available.”

He added: “Since getting the job I have been on cloud nine and my story shows others that you should never stop chasing your dream, if you work hard for anything you will succeed. I was worried at my age my chance may have gone but I have learnt starting a new career is possible at any age.”