Horizon appoints new head for Wylfa nuclear

Horizon Nuclear Power has appointed Duncan Hawthorne as its chief executive officer, initially to head up the company's development of the Wylfa Newydd nuclear power project. Hawthorne, born and educated in Scotland, will join Horizon, from 1 May 2016 following a 15 year period as president and CEO of the Canadian nuclear operations firm Bruce Power. Widely known and respected in the nuclear power sector, Hawthorne has previously held positions including chair of the World Association of Nuclear Operators and president of WANO’s governing board. He has been on Horizon's board of directors since 2013.

Horizon Nuclear Power was formed in 2009 to develop new nuclear power stations in the UK and is now owned by Hitachi. Horizon is developing plans to build two  new nuclear power plants totalling 5.4GW in capacity at Wylfa on the Isle of Anglesey and Oldbury-on-Severn in South Gloucestershire. These sites will each employ 850 people once operational with a construction workforce of between 8,000 and 10,000, the company says.

Hawthorne said, “I am very pleased to be joining this organization which has ambitious plans for the future and I hope to be able to add my experience in plant operations and leadership to help complement the many talented people who already are part of the Horizon workforce."

Hitachi Power Systems executive officer Katsumi Nagasawa, said, “With the Horizon project now entering an important new phase, we are delighted to have recruited someone of Mr Hawthorne’s reputation and experience to lead us forward. Our ABWR design is a tried and tested technology and will play a crucial role in helping the UK meet its energy goals of secure, reliable and low carbon power. The appointment of someone of Mr. Hawthorne’s calibre is a tangible demonstration of our commitment to succeed in this vital project."