ROSYTH Dockyard has won a 10-year contract to build specialist equipment for the treatment of nuclear waste at Sellafield.

Cavendish Nuclear was awarded the deal, worth up to £95 million in the first three years, to supply ‘glove box systems’ for the site in Cumbria.

It’s a subsidiary of Babcock and the firm said the work would come to Rosyth as it had a “proven track record in delivering large-scale complex products”.

The news comes just three weeks after 250 jobs at the dockyard were axed, as the £6 billion project to deliver the Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers nears the end.

Babcock CEO Archie Bethel said: “We are delighted that Cavendish Nuclear continues to support Sellafield in the delivery of this strategically-important programme.

“The team will provide the significant manufacturing capacity the project needs, as well as opportunities to share best practice across the UK.”

Cavendish will use the Rosyth facility, one of the UK’s largest manufacturing facilities, to supply Sellafield Ltd with specialist handling and containment systems to process nuclear material.

It follows major investment in new workshops, fabrication bays and remote overhead cranes at the Fife port, and the workers’ reputation for completing large-scale, complex jobs, including the containment doors for the pile fuel cladding silo at Sellafield.

Virtual reality simulation will play a key part in delivering the contract.

Once the preliminary design is complete, full-scale mock-ups with virtual reality headsets will allow the customer to test out the ergonomics and identify any modifications at the earliest possible stage.

The decade-long deal is an integral part of Sellafield Ltd’s strategy for the long-term management of special nuclear material at the site, with the first glove boxes ready to be installed in the early 2020s.

Martin Chown, the firm’s supply chain director, said: “Safe and secure clean-up of the nuclear legacy at Sellafield is our number one priority.

“Treatment and management of nuclear materials in the appropriate environment is vital. Placing this contract with Cavendish Nuclear – a highly-respected nuclear services provider – is an important step in our mission.”

Cavendish’s key supplier, Jordan Manufacturing, will work with them on the contract.

Paul Smith, managing director at Cavendish Nuclear, said: “Our team offers Sellafield Ltd significant manufacturing capacity to meet the demands of the programme whilst also providing opportunities to share best practice across suppliers.”