A brand new £3m West Quay has been built at A&P Tyne’s ship repair and fabrication yard, part of a massive investment programme undertaken by the Group in the past three years.
The concreted, fully serviced quay, 100 metres long by 48 metres deep, replaces its old, timber predecessor on the south bank of the River Tyne.
It gives vessels berthed alongside direct access to water, electricity and other utilities and, most importantly, has been specifically designed and built to allow direct load-out.
This means that the huge modules and equipment being built at A&P Tyne – such as the sections for Britain’s new aircraft carriers – after final assembly on the quay can be driven directly off the new quay on to barges or other sea-going vessels.
The West Quay development at Hebburn completes the second of a three phase £9m investment in its yard on the Tyne by A&P Group.
Neil Jarvis, Sales and Commercial Director at A&P Tyne, said: “It allows us to tender for business that we were unable to carry out previously. West Quay offers an enhanced service and lets us literally “drive” modules and heavy kit directly from land to sea.
“This facility will be of interest to both potential and existing A&P Group clients in the oil and gas, renewables and marine sectors.
“The West Quay can accommodate very large and heavy structures for final assembly and load-out, giving us access to wider marine and energy markets.”
A&P employed local contractor Southbay Civils from Wallsend and design company W A Fairhurst to design, construct and develop the new West Quay.
The work involved driving steel tubular piling 35 metres deep along the waterfront, sinking additional piles tied to the river bank, then resting a suspended concrete deck on top, additionally tied to a further new concrete slab.
It is tailor-made for deepwater berthing so vessels can moor alongside and hook-up to every utility directly from the quay.
The Royal Navy training vessel HMS Bristol, undergoing a major refit, is currently tied up alongside and benefiting from the new facility. The modules for the new Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier are also waiting on the quay, weather-wrapped against the elements, to be loaded on barges bound for Rosyth later this year.
The quay is part of A&P’s continuing multi-million pound investment in its three yards, on the Tyne, the Tees and at Falmouth, over the last three years.
Stewart Boak, Managing Director at A&P Tyne, said: “I have spent 27 years working on the river and in this time many yards have closed and generally the facilities have had little investment.
“These are exciting times for the company, and we now have a first-class facility that will allow us to compete for work in the existing and new energy markets and grow the business for the future.
A&P Tyne has the largest dry dock on the east coast of England and a modern fabrication facility capable of turning out more than 10,000 tonnes of steel a year for marine and civil structures.