Dock makes hay from imports

Tweed Dock

Tweed Dock

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Berwick Harbour Commission has reported a significantly increased net profit after tax of £65,401 for 2013.

At its annual meeting, chairman Andy Richardson said it had been a satisfying and productive year for the commission.

It builds on a profitable 2012 when it returned a net profit of almost £30,000 in its first full year of trading.

“This positive result is encouraging and clearly demonstrates the potential and capability of the port,” said Mr Richardson.

He felt the port had undoubtedly benefited from an increase in barley importations during 2014.

Cargo tonnage handled in the port during the year rose to 100,621 tonnes, an increase of 17% from 2012. Cargoes handled during the year include malting barley, oilseed rape, fertiliser and cement.

The commission continue to provide Ship Agency services in Blyth which is also a positive and productive service.

Cargo machinery had been upgraded during the year to cater for the larger vessels visiting the port.

“We invested significant funds during 2014 and were able to replace our ageing fleet of forklift telehandler machines with new models,” said Mr Richardson.

“The single largest investment was in the acquisition of a new Sennebogen crane. This crane is considerably larger than our other cranes and will comfortably cope with any size of vessel in the Tweed Dock. I consider the machinery upgrade to be a positive step and it will enable us to market the port more vigorously in the knowledge that we can attract the larger vessels.”

The Tweed Dock and approaches were dredged during 2013. Dredging is an ongoing requirement but Mr Richardson hoped that it would be another two years before a further programme is required.

Commissioners were also pleased to play a part in the re-launch of boat trips on the river.

The primary objective this year is to address the condition of the approach jetty.

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