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Upgraded Ferry Terminal at ABP’s Port of Troon Now Completed

21st April 2022
Marine works to upgrade Troon’s East Pier Ferry Terminal have now been completed to support the CalMac ferry service from neighbouring Ardrossan which serves routes to Brodick, Isle of Arran and Campbeltown on the Mull of Kintyre. The south-west Scottish port AFLOAT adds had been served by P&O Ferries fast-craft seasonal service linking Larne which ceased operations in 2015. The Antrim port, however recently saw partial service resume on P&O Ferries connection to Cairnryan, following a major crewing dispute that erupted in March. Marine works to upgrade Troon’s East Pier Ferry Terminal have now been completed to support the CalMac ferry service from neighbouring Ardrossan which serves routes to Brodick, Isle of Arran and Campbeltown on the Mull of Kintyre. The south-west Scottish port AFLOAT adds had been served by P&O Ferries fast-craft seasonal service linking Larne which ceased operations in 2015. The Antrim port, however recently saw partial service resume on P&O Ferries connection to Cairnryan, following a major crewing dispute that erupted in March. Credit: ABP-twitter

An upgraded ferry terminal at the Scottish port of Troon, operated by Associated British Ports (ABP) has been announced following marine works including new berthing fenders and a suspended concrete deck were completed.

The works carried out by civil engineering contractor George Leslie, are to support the CalMac ferry service to Ardrossan-Brodick/Campbeltown when it temporarily relocates to Troon (see Easter ferry related story) as part of the Ardrossan Harbour Project.

With the marine works complete, the focus at Troon now shifts to the completion of the required shoreside infrastructure, including the installation of a modular terminal building, extensive car parking, check-in lanes and pickup and drop-off areas. All of these works are scheduled to be completed by this summer

Commenting on the project’s completion, ABP’s Regional Director Andrew Harston said: “It is great to reach such an important milestone in the project and I am hugely proud of the local ABP team and our civil engineering contractors, George Leslie, who have worked so well together to deliver this on time and within budget.”

The berth upgrade has been designed to accommodate both of CalMac’s existing ferries and the newbuild M.V.Glen Sannox class of vessel which is due to enter into service next year.

Andrew Harston commented: “We are hopeful that the Port of Troon’s sheltered East Pier berth and track record of offering all-weather berthing will play a major part in helping to support the Arran communities call for improvements in terms of the reliability and resilience of ferry services to the island.”

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Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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Ferry & Car Ferry News The ferry industry on the Irish Sea, is just like any other sector of the shipping industry, in that it is made up of a myriad of ship operators, owners, managers, charterers all contributing to providing a network of routes carried out by a variety of ships designed for different albeit similar purposes.

All this ferry activity involves conventional ferry tonnage, 'ro-pax', where the vessel's primary design is to carry more freight capacity rather than passengers. This is in some cases though, is in complete variance to the fast ferry craft where they carry many more passengers and charging a premium.

In reporting the ferry scene, we examine the constantly changing trends of this sector, as rival ferry operators are competing in an intensive environment, battling out for market share following the fallout of the economic crisis. All this has consequences some immediately felt, while at times, the effects can be drawn out over time, leading to the expense of others, through reduced competition or takeover or even face complete removal from the marketplace, as witnessed in recent years.

Arising from these challenging times, there are of course winners and losers, as exemplified in the trend to run high-speed ferry craft only during the peak-season summer months and on shorter distance routes. In addition, where fastcraft had once dominated the ferry scene, during the heady days from the mid-90's onwards, they have been replaced by recent newcomers in the form of the 'fast ferry' and with increased levels of luxury, yet seeming to form as a cost-effective alternative.

Irish Sea Ferry Routes

Irrespective of the type of vessel deployed on Irish Sea routes (between 2-9 hours), it is the ferry companies that keep the wheels of industry moving as freight vehicles literally (roll-on and roll-off) ships coupled with motoring tourists and the humble 'foot' passenger transported 363 days a year.

As such the exclusive freight-only operators provide important trading routes between Ireland and the UK, where the freight haulage customer is 'king' to generating year-round revenue to the ferry operator. However, custom built tonnage entering service in recent years has exceeded the level of capacity of the Irish Sea in certain quarters of the freight market.

A prime example of the necessity for trade in which we consumers often expect daily, though arguably question how it reached our shores, is the delivery of just in time perishable products to fill our supermarket shelves.

A visual manifestation of this is the arrival every morning and evening into our main ports, where a combination of ferries, ro-pax vessels and fast-craft all descend at the same time. In essence this a marine version to our road-based rush hour traffic going in and out along the commuter belts.

Across the Celtic Sea, the ferry scene coverage is also about those overnight direct ferry routes from Ireland connecting the north-western French ports in Brittany and Normandy.

Due to the seasonality of these routes to Europe, the ferry scene may be in the majority running between February to November, however by no means does this lessen operator competition.

Noting there have been plans over the years to run a direct Irish –Iberian ferry service, which would open up existing and develop new freight markets. Should a direct service open, it would bring new opportunities also for holidaymakers, where Spain is the most visited country in the EU visited by Irish holidaymakers ... heading for the sun!

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