Home Associations New agreement between ABP and RMS Group supports region’s role in Northern Economic Powerhouse

New agreement between ABP and RMS Group supports region’s role in Northern Economic Powerhouse

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Mike Sellers (fare left),  and James Leeson (far right), with Ian Parsons, Mike Kirby - Image courtesy of ABP/David Lee Photography

Mike Sellers (fare left), and James Leeson (far right), with Ian Parsons, Mike Kirby – Image courtesy of ABP/David Lee Photography

The relationship between Associated British Ports (ABP) and long-standing customer RMS Group looks set to strengthen following the signing of a new 15-year agreement, which will see the two work together to develop and grow RMS’ business.

This latest deal will see two of the Humber Estuary’s biggest businesses working closely to help cement the region’s role in the Northern Economic Powerhouse, a concept designed by Government to improve the economic performance of the North of England.

RMS Group has facilities on all four of the Humber ports, as well as their own terminal facilities on the River Trent. The business offers stevedoring, cargo handling and inland logistics for general cargoes and specialises in the steel and renewable energy sectors.

This new agreement will strengthen the companies’ existing relationship and provide a strong framework for growth throughout the Humber for RMS as ABP’s Head of Commercial, Humber James Leeson explains.

“RMS’ businesses on the Humber have grown considerably from their initial operations at the Port of Goole, ” said James. “The demands for new, renewable energy sources have resulted in significant growth, most notably in Grimsby and at RMS’ joint venture in Hull.

“ABP has invested £750, 000 in warehouse development to facilitate this growth in order to allow the company to better serve its customers, and this new agreement means we can look at further investment for RMS and extend our partnership with them for a further 15 years, which is something we’re very excited about.”

Ian Parsons Chairman of RMS Group said: “We look forward to further strengthening our longstanding partnership with ABP. The Humber estuary is poised for growth particularly in the renewable energy sector and signing this long-term agreement is a measure of our confidence in the future”.

Under the new agreement ABP will be working with RMS to attract new customers to their terminal operations and to ABP’s Humber ports and new investments have already been agreed for the company’s terminal at Grimsby’s Royal Dock.umber poortHum


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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.

ABP Humber

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.


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