Green light for UK’s first hydrogen plant at key Cheshire industrial site


Plans for the UK’s first low carbon hydrogen production plant (HPP) have been approved by Cheshire West & Chester Council, in a move predicted to unlock billions of pounds of related investment.

The facility will be based at the Stanlow Manufacturing Complex, in Ellesmere Port. Construction is expected to begin this year, with the first fuel produced by 2027, feeding nearby industrial giants such as the Essar Oil Refinery, Tata Chemicals, Encirc, and St Helens glass giant, Pilkington to create the first low carbon refining operations, glass and chemicals manufacturing sites in the world.

Operated by EET Hydrogen, the hub will help to secure and grow vital industries, create jobs, and generate billions of pounds of investment.

Consisting of two plants (HPP1 and HPP2), the hydrogen hub will enable local industrial and power generation businesses to switch from fossil fuels to low carbon energy.

This will help to reduce the North West’s carbon emissions by 2.5 million tonnes every year – the equivalent of taking 1.1 million cars off the roads.

EET will develop the hydrogen hub in phases with the first plant (HPP1) at 350MW capacity, the second (HPP2) at 1,000MW capacity and an overall target capacity of 4,000MW+ by 2030.


These plants are critical to meet the UK’s hydrogen and industrial decarbonisation targets and enable the critical hydrogen infrastructure.

The development is a key pillar of HyNet – the UK’s leading industrial decarbonisation cluster.

Richard Holden, HPP1 Project Manager at EET Hydrogen, said: “This is the largest low carbon hydrogen project in the UK and one of the most advanced in the world.

“It is a vital piece of the North West’s journey to net zero, underpinning HyNet and providing the opportunity for manufacturers in the region to decarbonise their processes and support UK jobs.

“We have worked closely with regional stakeholders and are delighted to obtain this important approval for the project as we move from ambition to action.”

David Parkin, HyNet Project Director at Progressive Energy, said: “The plant will provide locally produced hydrogen to industry across the region, enabling them to switch their fuel to a low carbon alternative.

“Owned by EET Hydrogen and located at the Stanlow Manufacturing Complex, this will be the UK’s first large scale, low carbon hydrogen production facility, placing the North West region at the forefront of the UK’s journey towards net zero carbon emissions. The plant will support the creation of new jobs, safeguard existing roles and attract investment.”

Sean Murphy

Encirc managing director, Sean Murphy, said approval for the plant is another step closer to making the decarbonisation of the company’s furnaces a reality. He said: “This is another important milestone in bringing low carbon hydrogen to the North West.

“At Encirc, we’re looking forward to ensuring glass is the most sustainable packaging of choice for generations to come. With access to low carbon hydrogen, we can decarbonise our furnaces and make that future a reality.”