ABP Short Sea Ports

ABP's 11 short sea ports handle a combined tonnage of nearly ten million tonnes each year.  In the main they are serving their immediate hinterlands or providing locations for specialist cargo-handling streams.

The Scottish Ports of Ayr and Troon have easy access to Scotland's central industrial belt.  P&O Ferries is the major client at Troon, offering freight and passenger services to the Port of Larne, just 77 miles away, in order to serve the Irish market.  ABP's innovative timberLINK operation is also based at Troon, where logs are transported from other West Scotland locations by sea in order to supply the local paper-producing industry.  Ayr provides the opportunities to handle a range of cargoes in small size shipments and the current profile includes salt, recycled metals, fertiliser, and other agribulk products. 

At Barrow on the Cumbrian coast, traditional ship-building industry owned by BAE Systems continues to thrive, while the port has extended its activities to provide the ideal base to serve the Irish Sea offshore energy industry, from gas to offshore wind.  This development exploits the highly-skilled workforce which is available to these growing industries from the local community.

The Port of Silloth services the immediate needs of the surrounding agricultural industry and as a result it handles grains and animal feeds, and other agribulk products. 

Both the leisure and offshore industries are two centres which can provide opportunities for the development of Fleetwood, which has recently suffered the loss of a daily roro service operating to Larne.  Existing business at Fleetwood is based on the port's historical connections with the fishing industry where there is still a flourishing fish market and packing and processing industry.  Fleetwood also provides a safe haven for the boating community, and the marina, with its Four Gold Anchor-rated facilities, is meeting the needs for this expanding leisure market.

On the northern bank of the River Mersey, ABP's Port of Garston continues to thrive, handling more than 500,000 tonnes a year of steel, fertiliser, sand, recycled metals, food products including rice, and specialist animal feed products.  The Port of Garston benefits from its location within the Merseyside industrial region, as well as being close to the large chemical industry based in Cheshire. 

The historical Port of Plymouth is a home for Brittany Ferries, which offers daily and weekly freight and passenger services to Roscoff and St Malo in France, and Santander in Spain. 

Teignmouth serves the needs of the immediate industrial and agricultural hinterland, handling vessels up to 5 m draught carrying cargoes such as ball clay, salt, and fertiliser.

The East Anglian Ports of Lowestoft, King's Lynn, and Ipswich provide a range of facilities to meet the needs of a long-established offshore energy industry, as well as providing the ideal locations to serve industry in Norfolk and Suffolk.  Ipswich is the largest of the three ports handling more than two million tonnes a year.  Ipswich is also rail connected and DB Schenker offers intermodal services from the port to inland rail terminals including ABP's Hams Hall Railfreight Terminal in the Midlands.  Ipswich is the base for expanding Marina activities.

King's Lynn is primarily serving the agricultural cargo needs of the local farming industry.

For over 30 years, Lowestoft has played a key role in serving the needs of the offshore energy industry.  As a result, Lowestoft has become a centre of excellence and, with the continued expansion of the offshore wind industry, there are real prospects for Lowestoft to enhance its position in this industry of the future. 

For all commercial enquiries, please contact:

East Anglia

Alan Mason, Sales Manager amason@abports.co.uk, +44 (0) 1473 231010

South West

Dave Atkin, Port Manager datkin@abports.co.uk, +44 (0) 1752 662 191

North West

Paul Jervis, Port Manager pjervis@abports.co.uk, +44 (0) 1514 275 971


Stuart Cresswell, Port Manager scresswell@abports.co.uk, +44 (0) 1292 281 687