Port terminal’s first year is a cause for celebration

Sonairton Almeida with Achuthan Leelaratham at 'Villa's Brasil Restaurant      ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (180314-0472)

Steak and sushi buffet hailed a great success

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PORTSMOUTH International Port yesterday marked one year since its new terminal building was officially opened.

Portsmouth South MP Mike Hancock, who is also Portsmouth City Council’s cabinet member for planning, regeneration and economic development, visited the port yesterday.

He praised the council’s decision four years ago to approve the new terminal building and other changes to the port, which added up to a £16.5m investment.

The port is owned by the council, though operated independently. In the past year, passenger numbers through the port have increased by 19 per cent, and vehicle numbers are up by 14 per cent.

In March this year 22,124 more passengers used the port compared to the same month in 2011. The number of vehicles increased by 5,048.

Research carried out by Brittany Ferries shows that the port supports 1,595 jobs in the city, as well as contributing to the council’s coffers.

Mr Hancock added: ‘By having a successful port it’s a good news story for Portsmouth and the people who live here. It means we don’t have to put council tax up or make as many cuts as we otherwise might have to, so it really benefits everybody in the city.’

Port manager Martin Putman said the port is now being held up as a good example to others.

He said: ‘It has been a successful year.’