Great Yarmouth ready to handle huge timber imports

20 November 2020


Lacy & Middlemiss, part of the Denholm Group, specialises in short sea shipping operations, primarily for the forest products sector.

The company has an established timber liner service that operates principally between the Baltic and the UK, as well as from the Mediterranean and Scandinavia.   Through specialist support from across the Denholm Group, Lacy & Middlemiss also provides ship agency solutions, as well as warehousing, haulage and distribution services.

As one of the leading shippers of timber, Lacy & Middlemiss’ liner service is used by multiple timber customers across the UK.  The UK has seen a huge uplift in the demand for timber products in recent months, driven in part by the construction sector and the rise in residential gardening and DIY projects.

The Challenge

Lacy & Middlemiss was interested in adding Great Yarmouth to its East Coast UK port offerings. The initial enquiry originated from one of their main cargo customers who import approximately 60,000 cubic metres per year.  Lacy & Middlemiss discovered that it might be a good opportunity for them and their customers to offer a liner service to Great Yarmouth.  This meant the volume increasing from 60,000 cubic metres to in excess of 100,000 cubic metres per year, overnight.

The business required a port that could handle this capacity, reside close to the East Anglian region and have previous experience in handling timber.  Most importantly, they wanted a port that could show evidence they could handle volume growth in the future.

The Peel Ports solution

Lacy & Middlemiss chose Peel Ports Great Yarmouth to handle its liner service imports into the East of England for all of its customers operating in the region, due to its experience, location and expansion prospects.

One of its main cargo customers, Landguard Point, is an independent UK mixed timber importer and saw Great Yarmouth as perfectly positioned to support the handling of these high volumes of timber imports.

By listening to Lacy & Middlemiss and their customers’ constraints, Peel Ports designed a bespoke offering with IT solutions for stock management and the timber load-out process.

Peel Ports offered further logistical solutions through their sister company, Quality Freight.  Quality Freight are a UK leading shipping and freight forwarding company, and provide a national haulage service ensuring a seamless onward journey for all cargoes giving direct access to markets.  With the looming Brexit deadline, they are perfectly placed for offering custom clearance services.

Ideally situated on the east coast, Great Yarmouth offers improved road links with the new A14 in Cambridgeshire now open reducing travel time to the Midlands and Northern Counties. Peel Ports has an established footprint in the region to ensure an efficient operation.

Through regular communication and feedback sessions, and by utilising expertise and experience from its sister port Sheerness, Peel Ports has formed a partnership approach with Lacy & Middlemiss to deliver a successful service to all parties.

Niall Denholm, Managing Director at Lacy & Middlemiss and Divisional Managing Director of Denholm Logistics Group, said: “Lacy & Middlemiss has been delighted with the responsive service and proactive approach from Peel Ports Great Yarmouth.  Speed of discharge, resource availability and port operating hours make Great Yarmouth an ideal port in the East of England for our customers to have timber product imported.  Combined with the IT solutions to administratively handle timber products arriving into the port, cargo is promptly available for onward distribution, which is particularly important for our customers to meet the rising demand for timber products.

Richard Goffin, Port Director at Peel Ports Great Yarmouth, added: “At the Port of Great Yarmouth we are proud to offer Lacy & Middlemiss unique operational and administrative solutions and a highly experienced team to ensure that their fortnightly vessel calls are handled as efficiently as possible.  We have demonstrated that we have the ability to respond quickly to our customers’ needs by switching on services within weeks from receiving the initial enquiry to the first vessel arriving at Port.

“Great Yarmouth, by offering flexible and bespoke solutions to meet the requirements of the UK timber importing market, is perfectly positioned to meet the demands of Lacy & Middlemiss’ clients and their future volume growth plans and expectations.”