A £250,000 investment in an 80-tonne Sumitomo mobile crane could attract timber trade to the Port of Silloth.

The port’s stevedores, DA Harrison, have bought the crane which is adaptable for handling grab cargoes and bag or bale cargoes including baled wood-pulp imports.

However, Nick Ridehalgh, Associated British Ports‘ (ABP) north-west ports manager, believes the presence of the new crane could encourage timber cargoes to the port. He said: “We are looking to get into any commodity that we can and having the new crane will help with that.”

Richard Harrison, operations manager at DA Harrison, said: “The investment will help us handle increased tonnages through the port and demonstrates our continuing commitment to our customers needs.”

Meanwhile, ABP has invested £6.1m in a new roll-on/roll-off facility and additional hard standing at the Port of Ipswich.