Could Cruise Ships be heading to Hull?
Plans for a new cruise terminal and riverside berth to be built in Hull have been approved by senior councils as part of a large-scale project to transform the city. It is hoped that the new terminal will open in time to coincide with the UK City of Culture celebrations and events, which will take place in 2017.
So with so much going on in the city and many visitors expected to visit throughout the year, it seems logical to introduce a new method of transport into the city. Yorkshire does not currently have a large-scale cruise terminal; with the nearest alternatives being Newcastle and Liverpool – both of which are at least a two and half hour drive away from Hull.
As is the case with many large scale developments, there is debate as to where it should be located and the impact it could potentially have on the local community. The preferred location of the new riverside berth is Sammy’s Point – adjacent to The Deep, a popular public aquarium containing thousands of sea creatures. Building the terminal here will allow passengers easy access into the city centre and prove highly beneficial to the local economy.
Other alternative locations include Albert Dock, west of Sammy’s Point; and Alexandra Dock, located to the east. Wherever the terminal is built, there is no question that Hull has the maritime resources to be able to accommodate a variety of cruise ships. But what kind of ships would be interested in docking in the Yorkshire city?
Just a little further to the east lies the King George Dock, which already operates a number of ferry and cruise services. Cruise and Maritime Voyages are, at present, the only cruise line to operate itineraries to the Norwegian Fjords and Faroe Islands out of Hull. Their smallest ship, Azores, is also the fleet’s newest addition, having been transferred earlier this year. In 2016, however, it is interesting to note that former CMV flagship, Marco Polo, will operate an extended range of cruises to the Baltics, Iceland and the Faroes out of Hull.
Whilst Marco Polo weighs in at 22,080GT; it is hoped that the new cruise terminal and riverside berth may attract much larger ships to the area. The plans could support a total of 41 ship visits per year, as well as bringing 40,000 passengers into the city and pumping £13 million into the local economy.
Cruising is a booming market in the UK. The introduction of a new cruise terminal and riverside berth in Hull will result in holidays on the seas being more accessible to the people of Yorkshire.
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