Alistair Eagles, CEO Seatruck Ferries tells us how far Seatruck has come since 1996, and explains how important Heysham will continue to be in a post-Brexit trading landscape.
In 1996 we started our business with a single trip, carrying just 70 trailers of freight in the first week between Warrenpoint in Northern Ireland to Heysham, Lancashire. Fast forward to today, and we’re the fastest growing ferry company on the Irish Sea, responsible for around 20 per cent of the market.
That same route is still in operation today – although it has expanded somewhat. We now have eight vessels with seven operating on the Irish Sea, undertaking 78 departures and handling around 7,500 freight units per week.
The secret to our success lies in the simplicity of our business model as the only dedicated freight only ferry company on the Irish Sea, concentrating on the unaccompanied trailer sector from ports which reduce road mileage for operators.
Seatruck operate three routes from two Peel Ports’ locations. Heysham to Warrenpoint which commenced in 1996, Liverpool to Dublin which commenced in 2007 and finally Heysham to Dublin our newest route which commenced in 2011.
Across these four locations we are able to offer customers cost effective solutions which cut out the need to undertake lengthy transit through Scotland or Wales. By selecting ports which are closer to the origin and destination of goods, we help reduce transit times, reduce road miles and drive efficiencies for our customers.
The new M6 link has transformed port access from J34 on the M6. Port traffic is able to access the motorway without the need to transit Lancaster – reducing transport costs further for our customers - making Heysham an even more attractive entry port option for freight operators.
Driver shortages, particularly in the UK are also resulting in more operators looking to use Heysham and Liverpool, thanks to the efficiency of our unaccompanied trailer model.
Continuing to look ahead post-Brexit there are lots of exciting opportunities to expand our Irish Sea offering even further. Heysham will continue to grow as more and more customers realise the benefits of using dedicated freight only services. We look forward to growing with our customers, and offering the highest standard of service to the transport industry.
To find out more about our RoRo services at Peel Ports Group, click HERE.