Geest Line is switching its port of call from Portsmouth to Dover after 16 years of calling at Portsmouth as a revised schedule requires the weekend discharge of cargoes. The change in schedule comes as Geest Line replaces four chartered vessels with five newer and larger ships increasing capacity by 40%.
With the new vessels two port calls will be added in Colombia for the loading of fruit, as well as a new call in Flushing in the Netherlands.
Explaining the switch of port call in the UK Peter Dixon, managing director of Geest Line said: “Our new logistics require a switch of days for handling eastbound arrivals in England from Sunday to Friday.
“This would have been the first scheduling change impacting Portsmouth in our 16 years at the port. The port operator has however advised that their teams are regrettably unable to handle our revised schedule so we have had no choice but to, reluctantly, relocate.”
Dixon said the company did explore moving its call to Southampton, relatively near to Portsmouth, but it did have the cargo handling capacity for Geest’s specific needs.
Dixon said that the 32 staff at its headquarters in Fareham, Hampshire, west of Portsmouth would be unaffected by the change.
However, we can imagine that port visits will be less convenient than in the past.