The UK’s new deep-water port celebrated the arrival of the first ship, which delivered an early Christmas gift of four new automatic stacking cranes.
The very first ship to dock at London Gateway was the Wieniawski, which began its journey in China several weeks ago and completed its journey last week. The ship was guided from the piloting station in the Princes Channel safely to London Gateway by a Port of London Authority Pilot.
The historic occasion was marked with a ceremony where London Gateway CEO Simon Moore and Harbour Master, Colin Hitchcock, presented the ship’s captain, Capt. D. Musil and Port of London Authority Pilot, Simon Liley, each with a bronze model dhow to commemorate the significant event.
Mr Hitchcock said: “The Wieniawski arrived on time, on schedule and berthed safely. London Gateway will bring huge benefits to the UK’s shipping industry and this is a great big Christmas present for the whole team”.
Simon Moore, CEO of London Gateway, said: “Historically, London has played a major role in the world’s shipping industry and today marks the start of a return to former glories. Soon, London will once again be able to boast one of the world’s most advanced ports and have regained its place at the heart of the UK’s trade.
He continued: “By building a new port for the UK which is closer to the major population and distribution centres such as London, Birmingham and Manchester, we can make supply chains more efficient and reduce costs for shippers across the UK.”
The delivery of the ASC’s to London Gateway will mean the new port will deliver a step change in port reliability for the UK market. The automated cranes will operate consistently throughout the working day and night. The stacking areas for shipping containers will have dedicated landside and quay-side equipment which mean that road vehicles will always have equipment dedicated to their needs.
Port of London Authority pilot, Simon Liley, added: “It’s a great honour to have played a part in such an historic occasion. Everything went to plan and having undertaken numerous practice simulations for the berthing of the world’s largest ships at London Gateway, I’m now looking forward to their arrival when the port opens in 2013.”
London Gateway will open in Q4 2013 and will be able to handle the world’s largest container ships. It will be integrated with one million square metres of logistics and distribution warehousing, providing businesses with opportunities to reduce supply chain costs, time and CO2.
About London Gateway
Opening in Q4 2013, London Gateway will be the UK’s first 21st Century major deep-sea container port and Europe’s largest logistics park. Owned and operated by DP World and situated on the north bank of the River Thames, London Gateway will provide unrivalled deep-sea shipping access to the largest consumer markets in the UK. The port’s location, with its superior operational systems and service, will ensure ships load and unload as fast as possible, making London Gateway a world class asset for the UK.
Press Release, December 28, 2012; Image: londongateway