Harwich Haven Authority announces major improvement project for Harwich Harbour

16 October 2019

Harwich Haven Authority today announces that it is launching a major development in the Haven ports and has applied to the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) for consent to increase the depth of the harbour and approach channel to -16.0m (plus tide).

This significant improvement project will ensure that Haven ports will continue to be able to handle the increasing numbers of super-sized container vessels in operation and under construction for the future.

The improvements are vital for the future of the local, regional and national economies, to maintain the Haven’s role as the UK’s premier container hub and to sustain both employment and economic viability.

Neil Glendinning, Chief Executive Officer, Harwich Haven Authority commented: “The proposal we have put forward to deepen the harbour and channel is vital to ensure the flow of trade into and out of the UK’s largest port facility.

“The shipping industry is critical to the UK economy with approximately 95% of all British imports and exports being moved by sea and the UK maritime sector contributes in excess of £2bn GVA to the economy. Many UK port operators face increased competition for trade and we’re keen to ensure that Haven ports remain the premier destination for the global container shipping fleet.

“As the trend to build mega-sized container vessels continues, we need to ensure that we can facilitate the unimpeded arrival and departure of these vessels at the Haven ports. We also need to ensure that the local and regional economy continues to benefit from the trade and inward investment that this brings and safeguard jobs for future generations.”

Marine Management Organisation licence process

Before granting a licence to improve the access channel to Harwich Harbour the MMO will conduct a public consultation to seek the views of other regulators and stakeholders, which will last for a period of 42 days from 21 October 2019.

Public Notices announcing the licence application will be posted in the East Anglian Daily Times and Harwich and Manningtree Standard starting 21 October 2019 and will include an invitation for interested parties to have their say about the proposed improvement project. In addition – and outside of the required consultation process – Harwich Haven Authority will also be holding two information events during October. The first event will be held in Harwich on the 23 October at the 1912 Centre, Cow Lane between 10am and 3.30pm. The second information day will be held at the Felixstowe Town Hall, Undercliff Road, Felixstowe on 25 October between 10.30am – 3pm. More information about these events can be found on our website – https://hha.co.uk/news/events/ or on Facebook page @harwichhaven.

For further information contact: Fiona Brunning, Communications Manager
Tel: 01255 252310 or 07598282580
Email: [email protected]


Harwich Haven Authority:

Harwich Haven Authority is the Harbour Authority, set up by Acts of Parliament, to oversee the marine operations in Harwich and Felixstowe. It is required to do what is necessary for the ‘…conservancy, protection, regulation, maintenance and improvement of the Harbour and approaches within the Harwich seaward area, and the navigation thereof…’

The Authority’s jurisdiction covers the Harbour (including the Port of Felixstowe, Harwich International Port and Harwich Navyard), the tidal River Stour (including the Port of Mistley), through traffic to Associated British Ports; Ipswich, and an area to sea extending to the Shipwash Bank.

As a trust port the Authority has no shareholders and surplus profits are invested back into the Haven for the benefit of stakeholders. These include the port facility operators, the shipping lines, local businesses and communities, leisure users and visitors. As a statutory Harbour Authority, its main focus is on safety of navigation for all its users and it seeks to carry out these responsibilities as sustainably and transparently as possible.