Growth of the northern ports contributes to the growth of UK competitiveness as well as more sustainable patterns of distribution by bringing goods closer to their end destinations and avoiding long haul road and rail journeys from ports in the south, according to a report by consultants MDS Transmodal and Regeneris.
The report, for “The Northern Way” group of regional development agencies, says firms are increasingly taking advantage of these market trends by locating national distribution centres in proximity to northern ports.
For example, B&Q decided in 2003 to redirect much of its container traffic from southern container ports to Immingham, supported by the development of three large national distribution centres.
The report will be used in evidence to the Department of Transport’s Ports Policy Review. John Jarvis, The Northern Way’s transport director, said The Northern Way wanted the government to recognise the benefits of the growth of the north’s ports for the country. In particular it wants infrastructure improvements for better on road and rail access.