PD Ports has welcomed a new pilot vessel to Teesport in a naming ceremony held last week. The new vessel will join the current fleet to aid navigation of ships into Port.
In a ceremony held Thursday 26 June at Teesport the new vessel was officially named Saltholme, after the Middlesbrough RSPB nature reserve, in keeping with its two sister vessels, Coatham and Greatham, which are also named after protected areas. Following a blessing undertaken by Father Adam Gaunt and Colin Worswick from Mission to Seafarers, Dame Julia Cleverdon DCVO, CBE – Vice President Business in the Community, was given the honour of undertaking the christening by breaking a bottle of champagne on the new pilot cutter. She then was taken out for a trip on the River Tees to see the first-class performance of the vessel.
PD Ports has invested over £1M into this new vessel, built by Anglesey based Holyhead Marine Services Limited, which will enable the Tees Bay Pilots to continue to assist Teesport and the Port of Hartlepool.
David Robinson, CEO at PD Ports, commented: “We are constantly looking for ways to invest in the business and improve our services for the customer. This new vessel was essential in keeping the River Tees running safely and efficiently. It has been a pleasure to have Dame Julia Cleverdon at the Port to be part of the official naming ceremony.”
Dame Julia Cleverdon DCVO, CBE added: “It's an honour as Vice President of Business in the Community to launch Saltholme for PD Ports who have done so much to convene business leadership in support of the young people of Middlesbrough through their High Tide Initiative.”
Benefiting from the most up-to-date navigation technology and powered by twin Scania marine diesel engines, the vessel can cruise at 22.5 knots in a wide range of sea states. The vessel has been carefully designed to cope with the extreme weather conditions that can be experienced in Tees Bay with the inclusion of advanced shock mitigation seating.