The Solway ports import a variety of building materials, including aggregate, cement, furnace bottom ash (FBA) & gypsum.
Gypsum is imported from Spain for use in the manufacture of plasterboard at British Gypsum's site at Kirkby Thore, Penrith.
Cumbria has had its own gypsum mines for many years. The Spanish material supplements the locally mined material.
Photography at Workington Pier
Ship enthusiasts look forward to these shipments as some of the largest ships to visit Workington are used on the voyage from Mediterranean ports such as Garrucha.
A supply of cement is not available locally as none of the four main UK manufacturers have production facilities in the far north of England. Powdered cement is imported from Dublin Port where Ecocem have production facilities. It is delivered in pneumatic self-discharging vessels.
Four of BALTRADER's fleet of eight specialised carriers are regularly used on this route. They carry the distinctive emblem of the BRISE group of Hamburg:-
Cement is pumped directly into the dockside storage facility of the Thomas Armstrong Group.
Furnace Bottom Ash
Furnace bottom ash, is the non-combustible residue left after burning coal in power stations. It is imported by Thomas Armstrong for use in the manufacture of breeze blocks.
It is becoming an increasingly scarce commodity as coal-fired power stations are phased out in Europe. The closest supply to Cumbria is Kilroot, NI. It has been sourced from as far afield as Denmark.
A selection of photos is presented below in chronological order.
Gallery of Vessels
CEMISLE (St.John's) IMO 9213911 at Workington, 18th May 2015
Inbound from Dublin with cement.
CEMBAY (Limassol) IMO 9183465 inbound from Dublin for Workington with cement, 3rd Mar 2015
PERFORMER (Gronnigen) IMO 9376452 at Workington 6th Dec 2014
Inbound with gypsum from Garrucha, Spain.
CEMBAY (Limassol) IMO 9183465 departs Workington for Belfast, 30th Aug 2014
CEMBAY (Limassol) IMO 9183465 inbound from Dublin for Workington with cement, 21st Jun 2014
LUHNAU (St.John's) IMO 9213595 inbound from Kilroot for Silloth with FBA, 27th May 2014
BURGTOR (St.John's) IMO 8801113 inbound from Esbjerg for Workington with FBA, 3rd May 2014
PROGRESS (Groningen) IMO 9371828 inbound from Tarragona for Workington with gypsum, 18th Apr 2014
MERIDIAAN (Terneuzen) IMO 9385881 inbound from Tarragona for Workington with gypsum, 7th Nov 2013
VOORNEDIJK (Groningen) IMO 9346706 inbound from Belfast for Workington with aggregate, 22nd Aug 2013
CFL PENHAR (Groningen) IMO 9534365 inbound from Sagunto for Workington with gypsum, 8th Jun2013, & outbound for Southampton the following day
JANET (Valletta) IMO 91423257 departs Workington for Belfast, 4th Jun 2013 after delivering aggregate from the same port
VARNADIEP (Groningen) IMO 9263540 inbound at Workington with gypsum from Sagunto, 4th Oct 2012
AMMON (Midwolda) IMO 9319428 is seen arriving at Silloth from Flushing with FBA (7th Jun 2012) & departing for Drogheda the following day