THIS WEEK IN 1978: Ferry port set for more expansion

South Parade Pier on fire 11th June 1974 Picture: 4343-4

31 historic photos showing the evolution of South Parade Pier - including the fire 44 years ago this week

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Portsmouth was set to capitalise on Southampton’s major weakness by building up the expanding continental ferry port.

The declaration was made by the deputy leader of Portsmouth city council John Marshall, who said the Mile End port would continue to grow at a rapid pace in the future.

‘We have taken the bold, successful step of developing the ferry port from nothing.

‘Portsmouth has taken advantage of its geographical situation to bring about profitable links to the continent.’

One of the main reasons for its success was the port’s location at the start of Britain’s motorway network, something which Southampton could not rival.

‘We are determined to take continued advantage of Southampton’s weakness in this respect and to forge ahead with our port expansion,’ Mr Marshall said.

He was addressing a group of councillors and officers from east Hampshire, visiting Portsmouth to look at its problems and successes.

He said the port was one of the ways Portsmouth had diversified its economy and industry away from the Royal Navy on which it had been so dependent before the war.