Peel Ports’ historic Gladstone Lock gets £10 million upgrade

15 June 2023

Peel Ports Group has invested £10 million on new outer lock gates at the port of Liverpool as it further enhances its resilience.

The new gates will play a key role in enabling the safe navigation of local vessels, increasing reliability and improved operational efficiencies for port users.

Gladstone Dock has been serving vessels for more than 95 years, with original works completed in 1927.

Several iconic ships have passed through the dock since then including anti-submarine warfare and minesweeper ships during the second world war.

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Peel Ports appointed contractor Ravestein BV, which specialises in the fabrication of heavy steel structures, to install the new gates. The work was completed in May 2023, with the gates expected to be in action for the next 50 years.

Construction of the gate took place in Holland, with each gate weighing an impressive 300 tonnes, and measuring 20m x 20m wide.

To transport such substantial weight and size, Ravestein BV commissioned a specially designed barge to make the voyage between Holland and Liverpool.

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Marking its maiden voyage, the barge ensured that zero road miles were used for the delivery of the gates, supporting Peel Ports’ ambitious plans to become a net zero port operator by 2040.

Phil Hall, Mersey Port Director at Peel Ports Group, said: “This latest investment signals our dedication to future proofing our operations at the Port of Liverpool, as well as our commitment to providing a safe and reliable passage for vessels through our waters and ports.

“The new gates will be used for decades to come, helping to create a more efficient and speedy service for cargo owners. We would like to thank the teams at Ravestein BV for delivering and installing them in such a safe and sustainable manner.”

The project was delivered as part of Peel Ports’ newly launched partnership programme, which has facilitated collaborations with leading consultancy firms to deliver multimillion-pound sustainable infrastructure projects.

This venture follows the announcement of a new £28 million warehouse facility at the Port of Liverpool, the firm’s biggest single investment in warehousing this year. The facility will have 300 metres of dedicated quayside and state-of-the-art cranes to optimise vessel discharge.

Peel Ports has invested over £1bn on sustainable infrastructure projects over the last decade, with a further £200m planned in the next twelve months.