The new inner gates, which each measure over 24 metres wide and 13 metres high and weigh-in at an enormous 140 tonnes, represent a £3 million investment by Associated British Ports (ABP) in the Port of Hull’s infrastructure and will improve resiliency on the port estate.
Senior Project Engineer Kevin Malton explains why the gates needed replacing.
“The old gates had been in situ for over forty years and had gone past the point of economical repair, ” said Kevin. “It was essential that we invest in new equipment to ensure the lock gates were fit for purpose and met the needs of ABP and its customers, as well as other port users.
“It was decided that investment was needed in the inner gates first and foremost, and the decision was taken to replace them completely.”
The old gates have now been replaced by brand new bespoke steel, semi-buoyant equipment, which has been fabricated in Holland by specialist marine engineering firm Ravestein.
The gates have taken nine months to construct and were brought over to Hull from the company’s base in Deest by barge. Crane barges were used to remove the old gates and install the new ones, and the old gates will be taken back to Holland to be dismantled and recycled.
The entire replacement process took a week to complete and the lock at King George Dock is now functioning as normal.
ABP is the UK’s leading ports operator with 21 ports and other transport related businesses creating a unique national network capable of handling a vast array of cargo.
Around one quarter of the UK’s seaborne trade passes through ABP’s Statutory Harbour Areas. ABP contributes £5.6 billion to the UK economy every year and supports 84, 000 jobs. Our current investment programme promises to deliver an extra £1.75 billion for the economy every year.
- Handled over 1.5 million vehicles in 2013.
- Generates around one quarter of the UK’s rail freight
- Has 1.4 million square metres of covered storage
- Has 1000 hectares of open storage
- Handled 119m tonnes of cargo in 2013
- Owns 5000 hectares of port estate
- Has 87km of quay
Over the next five years, ABP is investing over £650 million in a wide range of major projects across the group.
The four ports of Grimsby, Immingham, Hull and Goole handle more than 65 million tonnes of cargo between them each year.
Grimsby and Immingham form the UK’s busiest trading gateway and move around 54 million tonnes of cargo per annum.
£130-plus million is currently being invested in the biomass handling terminal in Immingham, in a Humber-wide agreement with Drax Power Ltd that has seen £25 million invested in a biomass handling facility in Hull. The Immingham Renewable Fuels Terminal handles sustainable biomass shipments and will create over 100 permanent jobs once complete. The construction phase has also created 100 employment opportunities.
The Port of Hull handles 10 million tonnes of cargo per annum and is the is the focal point for the development of the UK’s largest offshore wind turbine construction, assembly, and service facility, which will be located on the Port’s Alexandra Dock. This new facility, coupled with a new rotor blade manufacturing base near Paull to the east of the port estate, represents a £310 million investment and could create up to 1000 direct jobs.
The Grimsby River Terminal represents an investment of £26 million and allows large car-carrying ships to berth outside the Port’s lock system. This development confirms the Port’s position as the UK’s leading automotive handling facility.
More than the equivalent of 1million teus (twenty foot equivalent unit) of unitised trade is shipped through ABP Humber ports.
Ro-ro and container traffic represents more than 30 sailings a week to Europe, Scandinavia the Baltic and beyond.
The Humber ports handle more than 70 freight train movements per day.
Goole is situated 50 miles upriver and is the UK’s premier inland port. It handles over two million tonnes of cargo annually.