Forth Ports moves ahead with big Tilbury expansion


Leith-based Forth Ports said its Port of Tilbury business, London’s major port, submitted an application for a development consent order (DCO) to the UK Planning Inspectorate to build a new terminal adjacent to the current port in Thurrock.

Forth Ports is owned by Arcus Infrastructure Partners.

The proposed new port, known as Tilbury2, will be built on a 152-acre site which was part of the former Tilbury Power Station.

Tilbury2 is central to Port of Tilbury’s £1 billion investment programme for 2012-20.

This investment also includes the UK’s largest warehouse at the port’s second extension site — the 70-acre London Distribution Park — for Amazon UK, which began operating this autumn.

Tilbury has doubled the size of its business in the past 10 years and is projected to double the volume across the quay — from 16 million to 32 million tonnes — and triple the direct employment from 3,500 to 12,000 jobs over the next 10-15 years.

Expansion is needed to cope with rising demand for construction materials and aggregates from the UK’s building sector, imported and exported cars, as well as an increase in ferry traffic, which carries consumer goods, perishables and steel between Europe and the UK.

Forth Ports Group CEO Charles Hammond said: “As London and the South East grows, Tilbury grows.

“Tilbury2 will deliver much needed port capacity to support businesses importing and exporting to-and-from Europe and across the globe at a crucial time for the UK.

“Tilbury2 is a significant part of port’s £1 billion investment strategy as we look to provide the next generation of logistics facilities to equip Britain to take advantage of new business opportunities and cement existing trading relationships.”