NUCLEAR new build activities in South Gloucestershire and Wales have been suspended, putting hundred of jobs at risk.

Horizon Nuclear Power has today announced that it will suspend its UK nuclear development programme, following a decision taken by its parent company Hitachi.

Horizon is developing the Wylfa Newydd nuclear plant on Anglesey in North Wales and has a second site at Oldbury on Severn in South Gloucestershire.

The company has informed the UK Government of the decision taken at the Hitachi Board meeting today (January 17) not to continue with the current programme of activities.

Business secretary Greg Clark told MPs the government had offered a guaranteed minimum price of £75 per megawatt hour and was willing to take a one-third equity stake as part of a 'significant and generous package' of support, but could not go further because taxpayer value had to be maintained.

Duncan Hawthorne, CEO of Horizon Nuclear Power said: “I am very sorry to say that despite the best efforts of everyone involved we’ve not been able to reach an agreement to the satisfaction of all concerned.

“As a result we will be suspending the development of the Wylfa Newydd project, as well as work related to Oldbury, until a solution can be found.

"In the meantime we will take steps to reduce our presence but keep the option to resume development in future.”

Addressing the effects that this decision will have, Mr Hawthorne said: “Clearly this will have a significant impact for all involved with our project.

"We will look to minimise this as much as possible as we move into this next phase and we will begin consultation on the implications immediately with our staff who have shown extraordinary talent, resilience and determination to take this complex and exciting project to this stage.

“We will also engage closely with the many international and UK-based stakeholders who have strongly supported the project’s development, especially our lead host community of Anglesey in Wales, represented by the Isle of Anglesey County Council and Welsh Government, and the key representatives around Oldbury.”

Horizon Nuclear Power was formed in 2009 to develop new nuclear power stations in the UK. It was acquired by Hitachi, Ltd. in November 2012.

The company had been developing plans to build at least 5,800MW of new nuclear power generation plant at Wylfa on the Isle of Anglesey and Oldbury-on-Severn in South Gloucestershire.

Its power station sites were set to employ up to 850 people each once operational, with construction workforces of up to 9,000.