In 1962, the Transport Act established the British Transport Docks Board. By Act of Parliament, the Board was reformed in 1982 as Associated British Ports (ABP), which is now a subsidiary of ABP Jersey Ltd. Today, ABP is the largest ports group in the United Kingdom. It owns and operates 21 ports, including the Port of Ipswich, that make up a nationwide network capable of handling any type of cargo.
The Port of Ipswich enjoys a central location, near both the UK’s agricultural heartland and the shipping lanes of the North Sea. The port handles containers, dry and liquid bulk, forest products, general cargo, roll-on/roll-off cargo, and aggregates. It also has a waterfront conference facility and marina with berths for 250 leisure and recreational vessels.
The Cliff Quay Container Terminal is equipped to handle 40-ton loads and includes warehouses. The Coldock Terminal handles dry bulk cargoes that include animal feeds, fertilizers, aggregates, and grain. The terminal includes 16 thousand square meters of covered warehouse space. The Grain Terminal and Sentinel Shipping Services handle grain and animal feed cargoes, and the IAWS Fertilisers and Southern Cement Ltd operates new facilities that handle imported bulks. The port also has three aggregates terminals.
The Port of Ipswich has long handled forest products from the Baltic states and Scandinavia. Today, about 300 thousand cubic meters of timber products move through the port, and facilities include a state-of-the-art timber treatment center. The port operates a monthly container and general cargo service that links Ipswich to the Caribbean.
The Port of Ipswich includes a liquid bulk terminal with capacity for 89 thousand cubic meters of chemical and oil products. With four berths that can handle 400 tons of cargo per hour, the terminal offers tank storage and a complete line of services like blending, heating, and drumming. Roll-on/roll-off facilities are located at the West Bank Terminal, with direct rail connections.
The Port of Ipswich’s Wet Dock is 90 meters long with alongside depth of 5.5 meters and can accommodate vessels to 2800 DWT. The Cliff Quay is 155 meters long with alongside depth of 8.4 meters, accommodating vessels to 23 thousand DWT, and it contains 67.6 thousand square meters of covered storage as well as open storage facilities. The Cliff Quay also has petrochemical storage tanks with capacity for 89 cubic meters.
The West Bank Quay is 150 meters long with alongside depth of 7 meters, accommodating vessels to 16 thousand DWT, and has 6.4 thousand square meters of transit sheds as well as open storage. The West Bank Quay houses the roll-on/roll-off ramp with capacity to handle loads of 180 tons. Both the West Bank and Cliff Quays are equipped to handle and process sea-dredged aggregates.