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P&O Ferries to Open New Calais – Tilbury Freight Route

Update 03.09.19: Despite the below email having been sent to customers, shipping publisher Shippax was unable yesterday to get confirmation of the new route from P&O Ferries Headquarters at Channel House with the company replying “that no final decision had been taken regarding Calais – Tilbury”.

From the end of September this year, P&O Ferries will offer a new direct freight service between Tilbury and Calais.  The identity of the vessel to be used is not yet clear, but the stated capacity suggests a Ro-Ro with around 1,600 lane metres of freight space will be used.  The service is designed to have trailers shipped from France to a port closer to London, thus allowing hauliers to bypass any congestion at Dover and Folkestone.  P&O already offer a two-ship freight service between Zeebrugge and Tilbury using the long-term chartered Ro-Ro’s NORSKY and NORSTREAM.

The following was sent to freight customers via email earlier today:

“P&O Ferries is pleased to announce the launch of a new Calais – Tilbury – Calais daily service operating from end September 2019. This is in response to customer demand for an improved unaccompanied product connecting cargo flows from Calais and Continental rail connections with a location close to London, and therefore supports both your traffic flows and safeguarding your customers’ supply chains with improved BREXIT options.
 
The service will provide space for 12 self-drive tractor-trailers and 90 unaccompanied trailers or containers per sailing. The ship is planned to arrive in Tilbury daily at 0430 hours enabling your driver to be on the M25 before 0600 hours.
 
A new direct route to and from Tilbury gives you quick and direct access to the M25 London markets, the South of England and also all the Regional Distribution centres north of London / along the M1 corridor up to Birmingham.
 
This route saves up to 75 miles / 125 km each way versus the traditional Dover-Calais crossing.
 
Not only will you save fuel, but also save on drivers hours, and wear and tear on your vehicles and trailers.
Fast discharge of vessels means units available in Tilbury 0600 hours or before, placing your drivers on the M25 beating the rush hour.
 
Allocated space for regular round trip shippers guarantees availability to support your contracts.
 
Fast turnaround of units gate to gate on all our terminals.”
 
P&O Ferries
Godby Shipping's MISTRAL seen arriving at Dublin on March 5th while covering on P&O Ferries Liverpool - Dublin route. Copyright © Robbie Cox
Godby Shipping’s MISTRAL seen arriving at Dublin on March 5th while covering on P&O Ferries Liverpool – Dublin route. She has since been made a permanent vessel on the route, replacing the Ro-Pax EUROPEAN ENDEAVOUR. The as-yet unknown vessel to be used on a P&O Freight service between Tilbury and Calais is likely to be of similar size, and perhaps even a sister of MISTRAL. Copyright © Robbie Cox

Last update 04.09.19:  Fixed caption

Steven Tarbox

Steven is a former retail professional and a ferry writer and photographer. He created NI Ferry Site as a web design project in 2014 to be a news and information source for everyone with an interest in ferries, with a particular focus on Northern Ireland. Steven is the editor of the website and looks after all of the technical aspects.
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