Two state of the art lock gates have been successfully installed and tested at Milford Marina, making the vibrant harbour one of the most accessible locked tidal marinas anywhere in Britain.
The gates, which weigh 90 tonnes each, were installed as part of a £6m project to speed up lock times and improve accessibility into and out of Milford Docks and Marina. They have been fitted one third of the way down the giant 120m lock that was originally commissioned 126 years ago. The Dock Lock project is the single largest investment ever at Milford Marina and is one of the largest civil engineering projects of its type undertaken in the UK over the last 2 years. It is key to making the area a marine leisure hub for west Wales.
The project is part of Visit Wales' Coastal Tourism Project, part funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, to encourage tourism along the Welsh coastline. The building work for the project took 18 months to complete, requiring thousands of tonnes of concrete and steel to be buried either side and on the bottom of the lock to create a sill and hangers capable of taking the pressure exerted by the lock gates and huge volumes of water.
Alaric Churchill, Marina and Docks Manager, says for leisure users either based in or wanting to visit Milford Marina, it will transform the experience of accessing the outstanding facilities of west Wales’ only 4 Gold Anchor accredited Marina. “Boats can now come and go more often and more quickly. Now that there’s less waiting to get in, we want everyone to know we very much welcome visitors on a day out, or those wanting a perfect base for their boat from which to explore Pembrokeshire’s beautiful coastline.”
Chief Executive of the Port of Milford Haven, Alec Don added, “This has been a challenging but exciting project and we are delighted to finally announce its completion in readiness for this year’s summer season. This achievement also marks the end of the first phase of our £70 million regeneration scheme – the Milford Dock Master Plan, which is gaining momentum following its planning approval earlier this year. It is definitely an exciting time for the Port as our diversification strategy begins to pay off.”
Alaric added, “We just want to say a huge thank you to all the dock and marina users and local residents who’ve put up with the works and lock closures over the past few months. I would now love everyone to come and try out the new system and experience the improvements for themselves.
Photo caption: ‘Gypsy Dancer’ was the first boat to sail through the new lock
Notes to Editors:
Port of Milford Haven
The Port of Milford Haven is UK’s top energy port and Wales’ busiest port handling around 20% of Britain’s seaborne trade in oil and gas. It is widely recognised in the industry as the energy capital of the UK.
The Port, along with the cluster of energy-related businesses along the Waterway, is a key driver of economic activity in Pembrokeshire, attracting inward investment and supporting over 4,000 jobs.
The Port of Milford Haven also owns and operates Pembroke Port and Milford Marina and Fish Docks. Activities such as cargo handling, ferry operations, fish landing and cruise calls as well as a first class marina are spread across these two sites.
One of the most prominent on the West Coast, the Port is in the heart of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the only Coastal National Park in Great Britain. It is marked as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and has many areas designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).
The Port of Milford Haven is a trust port – an independent, commercially run organisation that has statutory responsibilities governed by its Acts, to maintain and improve navigation and the provision of Port and Harbour services and facilities. Additionally, the Port provides significant financial and in-kind support to a wide variety of local causes. All profits are retained within the business to fund these objectives.
For further information, visit www.mhpa.co.uk or contact:
Port of Milford Haven