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Warrenpoint Port has appointed David Holmes as its new Chief Executive Officer.

David joins the harbour, the second largest in Northern Ireland, from Irwin’s Bakery where he has been Operations Director for the past six years.

Previously, David has held senior positions at Kerry Group, Unigate, and Premier Foods.

Stan McIlvenny, Chairman of Warrenpoint Harbour Authority, said:

“We are delighted to announce the appointment of David Holmes as new Chief Executive Officer of Warrenpoint Port.

“With a background dealing with complex operations and supply chains in the food industry, David’s wealth of experience will be a tremendous asset to the harbour.

“The board looks forward to working with David as he continues the transformative body of work that has been taking place at the port over recent months and years as we continue to see tonnage and turnover increase annually.

"On behalf of the board of Warrenpoint Harbour Authority, I also wish to thank our outgoing CEO Clare Guinness (appointed in 2017) for her great contribution to the port and the economic prosperity of the wider region during her tenure."

David will take up the post in late summer.

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Warrenpoint Port has made an investment of £800,000 in new plant that will significantly improve efficiency at Northern Ireland’s second largest harbour.

Authorities at the port have taken delivery of the first wave of the new fleet which will include seven forklift trucks.

Eoin O’Mahony, Head of Engineering and Estates, Warrenpoint Port said: “This investment in new plant is just the latest step in our drive to maximise efficiency across all our operations and it is a great pleasure to accept the first tranche of the new consignment that will be fully complete by September.

“The new forklifts will have a broad range of lifting capabilities allowing us to handle the full spectrum of commodities that pass through the port from timber, to steel and beyond.”

The new forklifts, manufactured by Hyster, have lifting capacities ranging from 5 to 16 tonnes, while the harbour has also taken delivery of a new Bobcat loader.

The investment follows the purchase of a new crane in 2018 while two further cranes have also been refurbished in recent months.

Ian Taylor, Operations Manager, Warrenpoint Port, added:

“The amount of goods passing through Warrenpoint is growing year-on-year and we expect that trend to continue.

“Continually reviewing our operational requirements and investing in new plant and equipment when needed ensures that we maintain the high quality of service that our customers expect, providing for a cost-effective and expeditious transit of goods through the harbour.”

Warrenpoint Port handed a record 3.6 million tonnes of cargo in 2018, valued at £6.5 billion.

Last year, harbour authorities unveiled a 25-year masterplan that forecast a significant increase in trade over the coming decades including a rise by up to 80% of core roll on, roll off freight by 2040.

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Japanese industrial gas company Nippon Gases is to establish a major liquid carbon dioxide (CO2) import and distribution terminal at Warrenpoint Port.

The €11 million (£9.5m) project represents the first major investment in Ireland by the firm since it purchased Praxair Gases Europe in December ‘18.

The facility which will store liquid CO2 for the food and drinks industry across Ireland aims to significantly improve the security of supply for the gas on both sides of the border, and also lead to a major reduction in carbon emissions by minimising the need for road tankers.

Work is due to commence this summer on the construction of the facility, which is expected to become operational in Q2 2020.

Clare Guinness, CEO, Warrenpoint Port, commented:

“This investment by Nippon Gases is a major endorsement of Warrenpoint Port and recognises the benefits provided by our unique position equidistant between Belfast and Dublin that ideally places the harbour to facilitate the distribution of goods across the whole of Ireland.

“The commencement of construction work on the terminal soon will signal the final stage of a scheme that we have been working on for some time.

“The project represents another important element in our efforts to enhance Warrenpoint Port’s offering and cement our position as a catalyst for economic growth in the local region and further afield.”

The establishment of the liquid carbon dioxide import terminal, which will have the capacity to hold approximately 2,500 tonnes, follows a major shortage of the gas experienced in Ireland and the United Kingdom during the summer of 2018.

Gerard Dore, Commercial Manager, Nippon Gases, added:

“CO2 is a key ingredient in the production of food and beverages. People know that it adds the fizz to drinks. Many are not aware however that it is also used in the processing of meat and food products. Food applications include modified atmosphere packing, chilling and freezing of foods. It is also used in the production of dry ice which is used in airline catering, online food sales plus transport of pharmaceutical and clinical products.

“However, with no significant native source of liquid Carbon Dioxide on the island of Ireland. All liquid carbon dioxide is currently imported by all the industrial gas companies daily into Ireland via road tankers coming across the Irish Sea.

“Nippon Gases already own a number of CO2 terminals and ships in North West Europe. With this investment in Ireland, Nippon is changing the supply chain radically for their Irish customers by importing via ship rather than road tanker. It is worth noting that one ship will be the equivalent of 90 road tankers coming across the Irish Sea. The carbon footprint reduction is very large. In addition, we are also linking in with the more abundant CO2 source region of continental Europe, namely the Netherlands. This is important as the British Isles currently do not produce sufficient quantities of CO2 for their annual usage.

“This facility will ensure we can continue to guarantee into the future food grade, completely traceable liquid Carbon Dioxide that Irish industry both North and South of the border desires.

“We are delighted to be working with Warrenpoint Port on this exciting venture and look forward to commissioning the terminal next year.”

The works are in addition to Warrenpoint Port’s £4m capital investment programme that includes a reconfiguration of internal infrastructure and the regeneration of the landmark Town Dock House building that will re-establish an interface between the harbour and the town.

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Work has commenced on the redevelopment of the landmark Town Dock House at Warrenpoint Port, the flagship project in the harbour’s £4 million capital investment programme.
The building, which fronts onto Warrenpoint Town Square, will be returned to its former use as the main harbour office, re-establishing a direct interface between the port and the town centre.

Clare Guinness, CEO, Warrenpoint Port, said: “As a key local employer, Warrenpoint Port has long-established historic links with our town and the surrounding area.

“The redevelopment of Town Dock House, an iconic building at the heart of our town centre, will build on those links and provide a major regeneration boost that we can all enjoy.

“The relocation of the administrative offices is just the first phase of our plans for the Town Dock, however. We also look forward to progressing plans to open up the dock to the public by creating new openings in the wall and railings to allow access from the Town Square to the water’s edge at the marina.”

The Town Dock House works will include a complete refurbishment of the existing building and an extension which will provide additional office space and board room facilities.

Eamon Larkin, Director of Newry-based architecture Milligan Reside Larkin which designed the scheme, added:

“Our team worked with Warrenpoint Port to sensitively design an extension to the former office building without impinging on the status of the existing building.

“It is an exciting project to be involved in as it will add to the vitality of Warrenpoint Town centre and complement other recent developments in the area.”

The project is part of a £4m capital investment programme that also includes the reconfiguration of internal port infrastructure, a new road layout, and additional plant and equipment.

Clare added: “Demand for our services is growing year-on-year. By continuing to invest in our facilities, we can ensure the Port is best placed to capitalise on that growing demand for the benefit of port users, our customers, our community and the wider economy.”

Building work on Town Dock House will be carried out by Newry-based firm Killowen Contracts and is expected to take six months to complete.

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Warrenpoint Port handled 3.6 million tonnes of cargo in 2018, the highest annual level recorded in the harbour’s history.

The total value of goods moving through the port also reached record levels, surpassing £6.5 billion for the first time.

The trading figures confirmed Warrenpoint’s position as the second largest port in Northern Ireland as it handled 12 per cent of all seaborne trade in the region.

Clare Guinness, CEO, Warrenpoint Port, commented:

“2018 was another record year for Warrenpoint Port following four successive years of growth.

“Much of the increase can be attributed to the success of our core roll-on roll-off freight service while we have also diversified the range of bulk goods that we handle as we look towards further growth in 2019 and beyond.”

The port handles a range of goods including timber, steel, animal feed, and cement and deals with imports to and exports from countries and regions across the world including Spain, Italy, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Ukraine, and the Americas.

The overall number of units that passed through the port in 2018 rose to more than 126,000, boosted by a 4.8 per cent increase in freight units.

This followed the deployment by Seatruck Ferries of two larger freight vessels on the key Warrenpoint to Heysham route in direct response to growing demand for unaccompanied trailer space.

The move will enable the operator to carry 30,000 additional trailers annually on the crossing as it forecasts continued growth in the service beyond Brexit.

The port also made several major investments during the year including more than £3m on the purchase of a new crane and the refurbishment of two others.

Clare added:

“As we look towards further growth in 2019 and beyond, we have plans to continue our investment programme over the coming months as we aim to improve port infrastructure, plant and equipment.

“This will allow us to be more flexible, more efficient and open up more space, enabling trade to grow in line with expectations and widen the scope of goods we can handle.

“Last year saw the commencement of wood chip exports from Warrenpoint for the first time while we also handled our largest consignment of wind turbines.”

The rising levels of activity resulted in the number of staff directly employed by the port increasing to 70.

More than 200 people work at the harbour every day while port activity sustains more than 1,500 jobs locally.

Clare added:

“Warrenpoint Port exists for the benefit of our economy and community. Trade is the lifeblood of the economy and the port activities support thousands of jobs which are vital for the prosperity of the region.

“As a trust port, we are committed to continually invest in the port estate and our community as we seek to build on and sustain our position as a driver for growth for many years to come.”

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Warrenpoint Port has commissioned a new crane and has commenced the refurbishment of two other cranes following a major £3 million capital investment.

The new crane, built and supplied by Finnish manufacturer Konecranes, will significantly improve efficiency at the Port by reducing loading and unloading times, with the ability to lift 100 tonnes up to 42 metres above sea level.

Clare Guinness, CEO at Warrenpoint Port, said: “After much anticipation, we are proud to announce that works have reached completion on the build of our latest crane, which is now fully operational.

“The £3 million investment forms part of a major drive to facilitate our 25-year growth plan that was announced earlier this year.”

In 2017, Warrenpoint Port, Northern Ireland’s second largest port, handled a record 3.56 million tonnes of cargo valued at £6.2 billion.

The crane investment will improve the Port’s bulk business, which includes grain, timber, steel, wood chip, coal and cement.

Clare continued:  “This investment in our operational equipment marks the start of a considerable port-wide capital expenditure programme to improve efficiency, customer service and throughput. This will help us obtain our strategic objective which is to boost prosperity in the region given our position as a major catalyst for economic growth.” 

Founded more than 80 years ago, Konecranes is one of the world’s leading makers of heavy lifting equipment serving the manufacturing and processing industries, shipyards, ports and terminals.

Neil Griffiths, Regional Sales & Service Director, Konecranes Port Solutions, added: “We are very proud to have Warrenpoint, who has gradually invested in Konecranes Gottwald mobile harbour cranes, as our partner in cargo handling. The most recent addition of the eco-efficient Model 3 crane for handling all kind of cargo increases our long-term customer’s fleet to six cranes and will significantly bolster up Warrenpoint’s position in Ireland.”

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#Ports&Shipping - On both sides of the border, The Irish News writes campaigners are objecting to plans to deposit dredged material within Carlingford Lough, claiming it would bring nuclear substances into the bay.

As covered on Afloat.ie, Warrenpoint Port is proposing to move the placing of dredged material collected during its regular operations and carried out in order to maintain clear access for vessels - from 16 miles out at sea to within the lough.

The port has earmarked a site between Greencastle and Cranfield for the plans.

The Carlingford Ferry crosses close to the proposed zone, from Greencastle in Co Down to Greenore in Co Louth.

For further reading, click here.

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#Ports&Shipping - A new date has been set by Warrenpoint Port (Monday 15th October) for a public drop-in event to allow members of the public and other stakeholders to learn more about proposed changes to how dredged material from the harbour is dealt with in Carlingford Lough.

The open drop-in event day is to take place at Warrenpoint Town Hall from 3pm to 6pm. The event follows the postponement on health and safety grounds due to adverse weather caused by Storm Ali, of the previously planned meeting in the same venue as also posted here on Afloat which focused on a bulk-carrier call from the Black Sea. 

Clare Guinness, CEO, Warrenpoint Port said: “We are pleased to announce a new date for the public to join with us at Warrenpoint Town Hall to find out more about proposals for a new placement site for dredged material.

“We are also extending the closing date for comments on this stage of the consultation process to 31st October.

“In our role as a custodian of the marine environment, we want to hear the views of all stakeholders before any plans are put into action.”

It is proposed that dredged material, is placed at a site in the mouth of Carlingford Lough between Cranfield Point and Greencastle.

A number of surveys, studies and assessments will be undertaken to determine the suitability of the location, the results of which will be made publicly available and will be subject to further public consultation.

The public drop-in event will be attended by staff from Warrenpoint Port and its consultants Royal HaskoningDHV.

More information is available at the port's website here while comments can be made by contacting [email protected]

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#Ports&Shipping - A Panamanian flagged bulk-carrier loaded with 18,000 tonnes of animal feed arrived in Warrenpoint Port, Co. Down following a voyage from a Black Sea port in Romania, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The bulker, Fanaria according to Warrenpoint Port was assisted onto its berth using two tugs on 11 September. Afloat has identified the tug at the stern as Mourne Shore, the veteran vessel dating to 1964 was formerly the German serving Bugsier 29. Working the mooring lines at the bulker's bow is understood to be the tug's fleetmate, Mourne Valley. 

Warrenpoint Port which is Northern Ireland's second largest port including Seatruck's ro-ro freight services to Heysham, England. In addition to handling containers, dry-bulk and break-bulk cargoes. The port as previously reported this month, announced a new proposal for dredging operations in Carlingford Lough.

The port sought views and comments from the public and key stakeholders on the proposed changes to how dredged material from the harbour is dealt with. A public consultation was scheduled to have taken place this day last week at Warrenpoint Town Hall.

On the southern shores of Carlingford Lough is Greenore Port, Ireland's only privately operated port. Last year saw the launch of the first ever car-ferry service on the cross-border lough linking the Co. Louth port with Greencastle in Co. Down. 

Published in Ports & Shipping

#Ports&Shipping - The second largest port in Northern Ireland, Warrenpoint Port, is inviting members of the public and other key stakeholders to comment on proposed changes to how dredged material from the harbour is dealt with.

The Co. Down port currently carries out a major dredging programme every two to five years with material disposed of in the Irish Sea.

However, new plans have been put forward to carry out dredging on a more regular but smaller scale, with material placed at a site in the mouth of Carlingford Lough between Cranfield Point and Greencastle.

Clare Guinness, CEO, Warrenpoint Port said: “In order for the Port to continue to support maritime trade successfully, it must ensure a sufficient water depth is maintained to allow for the safe berthing of vessels, which it does through dredging.

“In anticipation of a rise in trade over the coming years, and to ensure the Port continues to thrive as an economic driver to the local region, a new site for the disposal of dredged material is being proposed within the mouth of Carlingford Lough.

“This is also in line with current thinking that dredged material should be deposited as close as possible to source.

“In our role as a custodian of the marine environment, we want to hear the views of all stakeholders, including members of the public, before any plans are put into action.”

A number of surveys, studies and assessments will be undertaken to determine the suitability of the location between Cranfield Point and Greencastle, including marine ecology and sediment surveys, geophysical surveys, and hydrodynamic and sediment transport modelling.

A public drop-in consultation event will take place at Warrenpoint Town Hall on Wednesday 19th September from 4pm to 7pm. There will be an opportunity to discuss the proposed disposal site and the environmental assessment process with Port staff and its consultants Royal HaskoningDHV.

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As an island economy a healthy maritime sector is key to our national competitiveness. Virtually all our imports and exports pass through Irish ports.

The ports are therefore a vital cog in our economy but they're also a great place to see some interesting ships. 86 cruise liners called to Dublin in 2010 and a similar number came to Cork, including some of the biggest in the world.

These pages cover the following sectoral areas: shipowners, harbour authorities, shipbrokers, freight forwarders and contractors, cruise liner operators, port users, seamen, merchants, academic institutions, shipyards and repair facilities, naval architects, navy and defence personnel.

Our pages are covering some of the most notable arrivals around our coast and reporting too on port development and shipping news.

This section of the site deals with Port and Shipping News on our largest ports Dublin Port, Port of Cork, the Shannon Estuary, Galway Harbour and Belfast Lough.

A recent study carried out for the Irish Ports Association (IPA) totalled 75.7 billion during 2004 and their net economic impact was some 5.5 billion supporting around 57, 500 full time employees.

We also post updates on fishing, fisheries, lighthouses, cruise liners, naval visits, the Irish Naval service, coastal marinas and lots more too!

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