The capacity of Bristol Port’s container terminal has been boosted significantly by the completion of a £9 million upgrade. The investment is a further commitment to the ever-expanding container services offered at Avonmouth and Portbury Docks. James Stangroom, Commercial Manager at Bristol Port, said: “This upgrade is designed to further refine our productivity, and to provide considerable extra capacity to handle an increase in container traffic.
“Our container services continue to grow, as more and more businesses recognise the huge advantage of using the most centrally located container port in the UK, and the benefits that brings of connectivity and efficiency in bringing containers closer to domestic markets.”
The geographical advantage of Bristol and the south west of England, with motorway links to all points of the compass, has been highlighted by a number of major companies – including Amazon, The Range and Roper Rhodes – setting up national distribution centres in the hinterland around Portbury and Avonmouth.
James said: “We are a global gateway and have developed partnerships with a number of these key businesses, including for example The Range, which brings in thousands of containers every year via MSC shipping line.”
Bristol Port has two container terminals. Portbury handles larger vessels including the weekly MSC feeder from Antwerp. Avonmouth serves smaller vessels with rapid turnaround time for smaller volumes.
Carriers operating with Bristol Port include MSC, DFDS Suardiaz Line and Containerships (both providing weekly services to and from Bilbao; Grimaldi Lines (weekly services to and the Mediterranean, Sweden and Denmark) and Cronus Logistics (three sailings a week to Northern Ireland).
Earlier this year, Bristol Port launched a brochure to showcase how it is “Brexit ready”. One possibility will be for importers to move from lorry-borne cargo – which has potential for delays by the imposition of tariffs – into containers, providing a further boost in this area.
The terminal update to increase capacity and the purchase of two new gantry cranes are examples of how Bristol Port is well placed to deal with any re-diverted traffic from Dover and other ports.