[Updated 1st February] Last week saw the first delivery of finished vehicles to the port of Ramsgate in the UK, marking the start of a new port operation, which is being handled by transport and logistics provider Gefco.
Around 1,000 Peugeot-Citroën vehicles were delivered aboard the UECC-operated car carrier Autopremier from Zeebrugge in Belgium, including passenger and light commercial vehicles.
The port is owned by Thanet District Council, which has granted a licence to Gefco to import and store cars there prior to onward distribution around the UK. Gefco has installed storage systems and physical security for the port operation while Thanet District Council has been conducting dredging operations in the area to develop and make the port operational for use.
The port of Ramsgate has three ro-ro berths and can accommodate vessels of up to 175 metres in length, with a 6.5 metres draft.
"I am pleased to confirm the first shipment of 1,000 new vehicles into the Port of Ramsgate," said John Stocker, Gefco's finished vehicle logistics director. "The vessel sailed from Zeebrugge, Belgium and is the first in a new shipping schedule between these ports. This new service is a result of several months of planning and co-operation between Gefco UK and Thanet District Council and we look forward to a continuing mutually beneficial partnership.”
Previously freight services at the port were handled by TransEuropa Ferries, which offered sailings to Ostend in Belgium, but those stopped in April 2013 when the company went bankrupt.
“It’s fantastic to see another business operating out of the port of Ramsgate,” said the council’s cabinet member for regeneration and enterprise services, Hunter Stummer-Schmertzing. “This new operation uses the port’s existing infrastructure and a portion of the freight and car lanes, all of which are ready to accommodate this new business, without compromising additional new ferry opportunities. This is a great message that the port of Ramsgate is open and ready to do business and that the industry is recognising the potential opportunities that our facilities have to offer.”
Automotive Logistics UK is a new one-day summit, to be held in London at a luxury venue in the heart of the nation’s business and government centre. “It will provide the opportunity to assess strategy and think operations for an unusual and increasingly-significant market,” says Louis Yiakoumi, publisher of the Automotive Logistics group.