GSK – Wind and Solar PV Farm


Developing a new wind farm and solar photovoltaic (PV) farm is no easy task and poses a range of health and safety risks. Our company came on board in 2021 to support this large-scale project at the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Irvine site in North Ayrshire, Scotland.

The Solar PV farm includes grid connection works for both the wind and solar projects. This includes an 11.4km export cable from the onsite DNO substation to the existing offsite DNO (Scottish Power) substation at Kilwinning. These works have been carried out by an Independent Connection Provider (ICP), an accredited company that carries out works on behalf of clients on the electricity network.

The scope of work required for the Solar PV farm, grid connection, and export cable comprised of the design, supply, delivery, off-loading, construction, installation, connections, site testing, commissioning, and performance testing.

The project was delivered by ib Vogt who were acting as project and construction managers and designers for the development. Ib Vogt are a leading utility-scale solar development organisation with a global footprint for producing high-quality turnkey solar PV power plants for end investors across the world.


Project Scope

Pre-construction Phase

We were tasked with determining the health and safety needs of the project and identify any gaps in the project setup. During this phase of the project our key contacts were the ib Vogt project manager and the QHSSE team based in Berlin. Key deliverables during this phase included:

  • Developing and maintaining a legal register of all UK HSE law & regulations
  • Providing an HSE project checklist for required actions
  • Regular reviews of project documentation including studies, drawings, and building permit to understand project risks
  • Site visits to assess potential risks and develop mitigation measures
  • Preparation of site risk assessments for both the construction and operational phase
  • Create OHS plan and ESMS plans/procedures for the operational phase


Construction Phase

During this phase of the project, we delivered the following services:

  • Continual review and update of the CPP
  • Check all contractor and subcontractor documents regarding the company, risk assessments, method statements, training status of employees, equipment/machinery for compliance and completeness
  • Checking and updating of the site risk assessment
  • Site inductions for contractors’ management and HSE coordinators, updating site induction presentation when required
  • Monthly/weekly/daily site safety updates covering general observations, accidents/incidents, and near misses
  • Reporting any accidents/incidents/dangerous occurrences to the HSE
  • Carrying out project HSE performance reporting to ib Vogt
  • Uploading of documentation to the ib Vogt Sharepoint to ensure that the offsite team in Berlin can monitor
  • Development and maintenance of emergency & evacuation measures and setting up emergency drills
  • Execute regular HSE meetings with all HSE representatives in order to agree on the actions and safety measures to be taken
  • HSE awareness talks on site according to the Environmental Monitoring Plan
  • Auditing of the environmental KPI’s
  • Monitoring of permitting requirements and update permitting register according to national requirements

Our Support

Before and During Commissioning

Our consultants provided HSE support to the construction site management required during the commissioning phase to fulfil local HSE requirements.

This phase included off-load tests/cold commissioning, grid connection/energisation of PV plant, and hot commissioning/on-load tests.

Support provided before commissioning included checking;

  • That electrical works permit documentation, to be provided by subcontractors, is in place
  • And update site risk assessment based on ib vogt template
  • Commissioning procedure to be provided by ib vogt and inform about required equipment, signage, etc.
  • Commissioning procedure including risk assessment and method statements, to be provided by subcontractors, for compatibility with ib vogt procedure and inform about required equipment, signage, etc.
  • Qualification/PPE of switching personnel


And following that:

  • On day of commissioning, conduct site induction with special focus on electrical works & EPRP
  • During commissioning, monitor compliance with the commissioning procedure
  • Check safety measures implemented for partially energised parts of the PV plant


Before & During Operation

The O&M site management requires support in the O&M phase to fulfil local HSE requirements:

  • Monitor permitting requirements and update permitting register according to national requirements.
  • Check and update the site risk assessment based on updated construction phase risk assessment (including only the residual risks).
  • Regularly checking that site access is in accordance to local regulations and HSE standards.
  • Monitor O&M works of subcontractors.
  • Review of subcontractors’ Near Miss and Accident reports and performing accident investigation and report (RCA) to ib Vogt O&M manager.
  • Semi-annual, or yearly, site audits and reports, together with O&M company and/or ib Vogt O&M team.

Key Challenges

  • Providing HSE support and oversight across multiple locations (grid works/photovoltaic install) and sub-contractors
  • Managing health and safety with non-english speaking sub-contractors and their operatives (circa 40 operatives and management teams)
  • Implementing local HSE requirements and best practice needs with international sub-contractors
  • Managing safety standards and differing values regarding safety on site
  • Building relationships with local/international site management and sub-contractors on site.
  • Providing safety training sessions, both formal and informal, including classroom based learning, toolbox talks, and coaching with ib Vogt’s international solar installation contractor (Sunotec). Sessions were translated and included safe use of tele-handlers and skid steers, fire safety, and general construction safety

Additional Support

Our team would frequently plan and lead corporate VIP site visits around the Solar site. Amalgamate looked after the safety of the delegation, as well as answering questions on the array of challenges faced throughout the project.

In addition to our engagement with the Principal Contractor, Amalgamate were engaged by Sunotec, ib Vogt’s Bulgarian based solar installation contractor to provide local health and safety support.


If you would like to hear more information about this project or how we can help you manage your health and safety needs, please contact us on +44 (0)141 244 0181 or email You can find out more about our consultancy services here or our health and safety training here.

Amalgamate Safety