22nd July 2015


We have appointed wind expert Chris Holden to head up our new multi-million pound training village in Lincolnshire, which opens in August. 

The state-of-the-art facility, which is based at the HCF CATCH facility near Grimsby, will provide world-class training and competency courses for the energy, engineering and renewables industries in the Humber region.

53-year-old Chris will be responsible for managing the multi-million pound facility, which is being constructed in two phases. Phase one features facilities to deliver world-class, industry-approved training in working at height, rigging and lifting, confined space, ropes and essential wind courses. With phase two including the development of a world-class innovation and training village with survival pool and dedicated skills centres to be completed in early 2016.

Chris from Humberside has a wealth of experience having worked in senior management roles for a number of the UK’s biggest organisations. Chris joins AIS from RES Group, where he was responsible for managing operations and maintenance teams working on some of the world’s largest offshore wind projects.

Before that Chris was operations manager at Carillion overseeing all the maintenance of Yorkshire Water’s 2,300 waste water treatment plants.  He also worked for Anglian Water for 15 years where he was responsible for establishing the very first ‘Aqua-university’ for staff to capture and build on best practice in water engineering across the organisation.

Chris’s first priority will be to establish AIS Grimsby and its offering and to forge strong links with the thriving renewable energy and chemical sectors in the Humber region.

He said: “As offshore ops manager at RES, I already had experience of AIS’s training philosophy so when this opportunity came up I jumped at the chance. The quality of the training here is unrivalled and I’m really looking forward to replicating the North Shields model in Grimsby. This area is well recognised as being at the heart of the UK’s wind industry and also has a booming chemical sector so I see lots of untapped opportunities to establish the AIS brand and make us number one choice for raising standards and competencies. I also see huge potential for promoting the innovative passive fire protection products and services that AIS Technical offers in the area.”

AIS’s Immingham centre will mirror our 150,000sqft world-class training village in North Tyneside, which trains 17,500 people every year for the oil and gas, wind and heavy industry sectors.