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Port of Tyne celebrates success on the Tall Ship Atlantis13 May 2008

On Friday 16th May His Royal highness The Duke of Gloucester will officially open the Port of Tyne's refurbished Riverside Quay. Over 100 guests will have the opportunity to see for themselves the reinvestment the port has made to the Tyne's main operational berth. Guests will then board the Tall Ship Atlantis for lunch and set sail for Newcastle.

The Celebration of Success marks the culmination of a ten year programme of development by the Port of Tyne in which a total of £100 million has been reinvested during what has been a period of tremendous growth and success. In particular, the port's main operational quay, Riverside Quay, has been extended by 180m to 754m and deepened from 10.5m to 12.1m and the main river channel from the piers has been deepened to -9.1 metres, giving the port the ability to handle panamax-class vessels. Dry cargo tonnage has doubled within four years and while coal has been the resounding success story for the port, it also handles newsprint, wood pulp, steel slabs, grain, coke breeze, aluminium hydrate and scrap metal.

Today, the Port of Tyne is unique among UK ports with the capability to handle the whole of the logistics supply chain in house through Port of Tyne Logistics Services. With an enviable reputation as a major European car terminal, the port's success in vehicle handling extends beyond cars with significant amounts of high and heavy vehicles such as excavators, plant and machinery being handled.

In addition, with the refurbishment of the port's Northumbrian Quay, and investment in passenger handling facilities, makes the port one of only five UK ports capable of handling cruise vessels up to 335 metres in length and the acknowledged major cruise port in the north east. Instrumental in attracting cruise lines to the region the port will be welcoming the QE2, again when she visits the Tyne again this October.

In April 2008, the Port of Tyne was named Port Operator of the Year, in the Lloyd's List London Awards 2008, triumphant against serious competition from major league ports such as APM Terminals (The Netherlands), DPWorld (Dubai Ports), Port Said Port Authority (Egypt) and PSA International (Port of Singapore Authority).

Friday 16th May is a celebration of a decade of successful reinvestment and development and a look forward to future growth and continuing success.

Bringing a flavour of past history to what is a celebration of present success and future opportunities is the resurrection of the Lord Mayor's Barge Day when the Lord Mayor of Newcastle, Councillor Peter Arnold will symbolically receive the Oar Mace from Captain Rudyard Shipley Master of Trinity House on board the Atlantis, and a flotilla of historical craft from the North East Maritime Trust will follow the Atlantis upriver.

Operational Note to Editors

The Port of Tyne is an important Northern Gateway and key player in the Tyne & Wear region; a dynamic trading hub with five business areas: conventional and bulk cargoes; logistics; car terminals; cruise and ferries; and estates.

For further information contact

Lisa Donohoe, Assistant Marketing & Communications Manager
Tel: 0191 455 2671
Mob: 07912 390 777

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