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Suppliers Careers

ABP Property and Other Businesses

ABP Property

Our property division brings together an unrivalled land bank spanning 21 multi-modal locations around the country, with 950 hectares of port-based development land.

ABPmer

Drawing on 60 years of experience, ABP Marine Environmental Research (ABPmer) provides specialist marine environmental research and consultancy services.

UK Dredging

UK Dredging (UKD) operates the largest British-owned dredging fleet and specialises in the provision of reliable and cost effective port maintenance dredging services.

Alastair Welch, Director at the Port of Southampton, the UK’s biggest export port, explains how current growth is shaping future expansion plans.

In 2016, we consulted on our updated port masterplan which sets out our options for the future. It sets out how we have increasingly made more and more from the space we have and how we have moved many non-port operations off the site – including to our newly acquired industrial estate close by in Marchwood. We have built five multi-storey car parks – with two more in construction – and plans for a further two
to increase our capacity for car storage in the port to 55,000 spaces. This will all help our growth in the short term.

We are also the UK’s largest cruise port with 2 million cruise passengers a year, we handle 3 million ferry passengers and we have the UK's second largest container port handling over 2 million 20ft containers (TEU) each year. Add to this the bulks business-handling grain, gypsum, salt, biomass, scrap metals etc, the oil terminals in Fawley and Hamble and the world’s busiest yachting community, the port is a pretty busy place…

We are working to improve what we do every day as we try to give our customers the very best service – and to support the growth of their businesses.

As we try to grow our business further, space is our biggest single constraint. With cruise ships getting bigger and the growth aspirations of the automotive manufacturing industry in the UK, the space challenge is only going to grow.

In 2016, we consulted on our updated port masterplan which sets out our options for the future. It sets out how we have increasingly made more and more from the space we have and how we have moved many non-port operations off the site – including to our newly acquired industrial estate close by in Marchwood. We have built five multi-storey car parks – with two more in construction – and plans for a further two to increase our capacity for car storage in the port to 55,000 spaces. This will all help our growth in the short term.

As we look to the long-term, we are exploring all options as we consider how we might grow to meet the increasing demand to handle exports from the UK.

We have strong ambitions for our future in Southampton, ambitions to grow the port, deliver capacity for UK manufacturers and help our customers’ businesses to grow, as well as to support our community.

In particular, we will consider the case for progressing development to the west of the port on land held for the last 50 years for port development, but for which permission has not yet been granted for that purpose.

We are working with the local parish, district, unitary and county councils, land owners, MPs, the National Park Authority and local residents as we explore the options to safeguard the future of the port and to secure permission to grow for the long-term.

Whilst these plans for the future may take ten years to come to fruition, we have much to do to deliver better service for our customers in the meantime.

Our marine team and operations team will shortly be in the same open plan office environment as we better plan how we can deliver improvements to our service.

Our rolling programme of investments are seeing improvements to quay walls, air bridges, car parks, cranes, railway sidings and security facilities.

We are also working hard to improve the operations we currently provide, organising teams to better deliver for customers, reviewing how our contractors work to get the best value for money we can and challenging many things we have done for years as we look to get better at what we do.

“We have strong ambitions for our future in Southampton, ambitions to grow the port, deliver capacity for UK manufacturers and help our customers’ businesses to grow, as well as to support our community.”

And finally, we have been removing as much junk as we can – keeping assets we use, and removing those we do not. This frees up space and money and allows us to focus on the future.

We have strong ambitions for our future in Southampton, ambitions to grow the port, deliver capacity for UK manufacturers and help our customers’ businesses to grow, as well as to support our community. With permission to grow from the local community, we believe we have an exciting future ahead.