Port of Felixstowe
The Port of Felixstowe, in Felixstowe
Felixstowe is a seaside town on the North Sea coast of Suffolk, England. The town gives its name to the nearby Port of Felixstowe, which is the largest container port in the United Kingdom and is owned by Hutchinson Ports UK...

, Suffolk
Suffolk is a non-metropolitan county of historic origin in East Anglia, England. It has borders with Norfolk to the north, Cambridgeshire to the west and Essex to the south. The North Sea lies to the east...

 is the UK's
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 busiest container
Containerization is a system of freight transport based on a range of steel intermodal containers...

 port, dealing with 35% of the country's container cargo. It was developed following the abandonment of a project for a deep-water harbour at Maplin Sands
Maplin Sands
The Maplin Sands are mudflats on the northern bank of the Thames estuary, off Foulness Island, near Southend-on-Sea in Essex, England, though they actually lie within the neighbouring borough of Rochford...

. In 2005, it was ranked as the 28th busiest container port in the world
and Europe's sixth busiest. The port handled of traffic in 2007, a ten percent increase on 2006.


The port has two main container terminals, Trinity and Landguard as well as a RO-RO terminal, Dooley.

There is a continuous quay of over 2.3 km, equipped with 29 ship-to shore gantry cranes. The main navigation channel is dredged to 14.5 metres below chart datum
Chart datum
A chart datum is the level of water that charted depths displayed on a nautical chart are measured from. A chart datum is generally a tidal datum; that is, a datum derived from some phase of the tide...

, with a maximum depth of 15 metres alongside the quay. This allows Felixstowe to accommodate the world’s latest generation of deep-draughted post-Panamax vessels.

The port has its own police force
Port of Felixstowe Police
Port of Felixstowe Police is a small specialised police force responsible for policing the Port of Felixstowe. Officers of this force are sworn in as special constables under section 79 of the Harbours, Docks, and Piers Clauses Act 1847. As a result, officers have the full powers of a constable on...

, fire
Fire service in the United Kingdom
The fire services in the United Kingdom operate under separate legislative and administrative arrangements in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales...

 and ambulance services.

The port is operated by the Felixstowe Dock and Railway Company, which is one of the few limited companies
Private company limited by shares
A private company limited by shares, usually called a private limited company , is a type of company incorporated under the laws of England and Wales, Scotland, that of certain Commonwealth countries and the Republic of Ireland...

 in the UK that do not have the word "Limited" in their name as it was set up under an Act of Parliament
Acts of Parliament in the United Kingdom
An Act of Parliament in the United Kingdom is a type of legislation called primary legislation. These Acts are passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom at Westminster, or by the Scottish Parliament at Edinburgh....

, the Felixstowe Railway and Pier Act 1875. In turn, the Dock and Railway Company is wholly owned by Hutchison Port Holdings
Hutchison Port Holdings
Hutchison Port Holdings is a private holding company incorporated in British Virgin Islands, it is the subsidiary of Hutchison Whampoa. In April 2006 Hutchison Whampoa sold 20% shares to PSA International, Hutchison Whampoa still owned 80%....

 Ltd (HPH), a subsidiary of Hutchison Whampoa
Hutchison Whampoa
Hutchison Whampoa Limited or HWL of Hong Kong is a Fortune 500 company and one of the largest companies listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. HWL is an international corporation with a diverse array of holdings which includes the world's biggest port and telecommunication operations in 14...

 which holds an 80% share of HPH. Much of the land on which it sits is owned by Trinity College, Cambridge
Trinity College, Cambridge
Trinity College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge. Trinity has more members than any other college in Cambridge or Oxford, with around 700 undergraduates, 430 graduates, and over 170 Fellows...


Transport connections

The A14 connects the port to the English Midlands
English Midlands
The Midlands, or the English Midlands, is the traditional name for the area comprising central England that broadly corresponds to the early medieval Kingdom of Mercia. It borders Southern England, Northern England, East Anglia and Wales. Its largest city is Birmingham, and it was an important...

 via the M6, the north via the M1 and M6 and A1 and via the A12 to London.

Each terminal has its own rail terminal which connects to the Felixstowe Branch Line
Felixstowe Branch Line
The Felixstowe Branch Line is a railway line from Ipswich to Felixstowe in Suffolk. The line follows the East Suffolk Line from Ipswich to Westerfield, and then diverges to the south. Passenger services are operated by National Express East Anglia...


Felixstowe South

In 2008 work began on the construction and reconfiguration of Felixstowe South terminal creating 1,300m of quay served by 13 new ship-to-shore gantry cranes. Work will be carried out in two stages with 750m of sea wall complete by the end of 2010 and stage which is expected to open in 2014. This new terminal will have a clearance of 16m and gantries suited for extra large box carriers.

Felixstowe and Nuneaton freight capacity scheme

The railway track between Felixstowe
Felixstowe is a seaside town on the North Sea coast of Suffolk, England. The town gives its name to the nearby Port of Felixstowe, which is the largest container port in the United Kingdom and is owned by Hutchinson Ports UK...

 and Nuneaton
Nuneaton is the largest town in the Borough of Nuneaton and Bedworth and in the English county of Warwickshire.Nuneaton is most famous for its associations with the 19th century author George Eliot, who was born on a farm on the Arbury Estate just outside Nuneaton in 1819 and lived in the town for...

 will be upgraded to allow for more freight trains and it will also be cleared to W10 loading gauge
Loading gauge
A loading gauge defines the maximum height and width for railway vehicles and their loads to ensure safe passage through bridges, tunnels and other structures...

 to allow 'Hi-cube' shipping containers
Intermodal container
An intermodal container is a standardized reusable steel box used for the safe, efficient and secure storage and movement of materials and products within a global containerized intermodal freight transport system...

 to be carried between the Port of Felixstowe and the West Coast Main Line
West Coast Main Line
The West Coast Main Line is the busiest mixed-traffic railway route in Britain, being the country's most important rail backbone in terms of population served. Fast, long-distance inter-city passenger services are provided between London, the West Midlands, the North West, North Wales and the...

 at Nuneaton. The West Coast Main Line is already cleared to W10 and the route from Nuneaton to Birmingham is already cleared to W12.

This work will accommodate additional freight traffic as a result of 'Felixstowe South' expansion at the Port of Felixstowe and from the proposed new Bathside Bay
Harwich International Port
Harwich International Port is a North Sea seaport in Essex, England. It lies on the south bank of the River Stour one mile upstream from the town of Harwich, opposite Port of Felixstowe...

 container terminal at Harwich. It will also allow the newer high-cube containers to be carried by train - and the percentage of these containers is expected to increase from 30% in 2007 to 50% in 2012. Network rail completed the gauge enhancement from Ipswich to Peterborough in 2008. Work should be completed by 2014. at an estimated cost of £291 million.

Copdock Roundabout

As part of the Felixstowe South development Hutchinson Ports will provide financial support intended to increase capacity at the Copdock interchange (J55) between the A14 and the A12.

Further reading

External links

The Felixstowe Haulage Support web site offers live information for Felixstowe hauliers and warehouse operators that can be found on the internet.
Haulage Support aas a Twitter Feed
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