Government backs £9.5m Tees bio-freight terminal

 THE Government has given a ringing endorsement of plans to build a dedicated multimodal bio-freight terminal on the banks of the River Tees.

 A total of £1.2m will be invested by the Government in the new facility being developed by logistics specialists AV Dawson which will see a new rail freight terminal built along with a quayside extension at the site on Riverside Park, Middlesbrough.

 The funding, announced in the first wave of Regional Growth Fund awards, will take the total investment in the bio-freight terminal to £9.5m over the coming months. The move will safeguard 150 existing jobs and create a further 32 direct and 190 indirect jobs.

 Once completed, the £2.6m intermodal rail terminal will have sidings capable of handling trains carrying up to 80 containers at any one time with 16,000 square metres of operational area and storage for up to 1,200 containers.

 In addition to the intermodal terminal, AV Dawson is investing £4.5m on a 200m new deep water shipping quay to serve the energy and subsea markets and £2.4m on phase one of a bulk warehouse development.

 AV Dawson has built a strong reputation in the biofuels supply chain and is already storing and delivering grain to the Ensus bio-ethanol plant at Wilton, Redcar. It will soon play a key role in moving 1,500-tonne trains of grain per week from Cambridge to Teesside to feed the plant. 

 Work is expected to begin on the AV Dawson Tees Bio-freight Terminal as soon as due diligence is completed. This is expected to be before the end of April.

 Gary Dawson, managing director of AV Dawson, said: “We set our stall out in 2005 that we would significantly ramp up the facilities and services we offer to the bio-resources sector and subsea and offshore industries. This combined £9.5m investment will deliver on that promise and provide a tremendous asset for Middlesbrough and the River Tees.

 “I am delighted that the Government has recognised the value of this project to the wider Teesside area. Not only will it safeguard jobs and bring new opportunities, AV Dawson was established in Middlesbrough in 1938 and has deep roots in the community. It is good to see investment focused on developing indigenous businesses that are committed to the local area.”

 Mr Dawson paid tribute to the work of North East accountants Clive Owen & Co LLP which advised on the Regional Growth Fund application. In addition, he praised the work of Middlesbrough Council and Tees Valley Unlimited in support of the project.

 Companies using the bio-freight terminal will benefit from a direct link to the East Coast Main Line as well as AV Dawson’s existing freight facilities including its Ayrton International Rail Terminal, North Sea Supply Base and Dawson’s Wharf quays on the adjacent River Tees. To serve these facilities, the group has 200+ trailers in its road haulage fleet.

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