Scrabster Harbour Trust reflects on a record breaking 2015, which saw revenue and activity records at the northern harbour increase significantly. The port also looks forward to 2016, to celebrate 175th years since the harbour was created.
Scrabster Harbour, which saw more than £20 million investment in the last five years, enjoyed strong success in 2015 bringing in more than £2.8million in revenue.
Throughout 2015, Scrabster saw more than 2167 vessel arrivals, in line with the previous year. However, due to an increase in oil and gas and renewable related activity, total vessel tonnage reached 8.259 million tonnes – an increase of 2%.
The fishing and ferry sectors continue to be the largest areas for the Caithness port. However, the Trust has pursued a strategy over the past decade, backed by an ambitious investment programme, to grow other areas of its business. In 2015, non-ferry and fishing related vessel tonnage totalled more than a million tonnes for the first time.
Oil and gas related tonnage totalled 487,368 tonnes for the calendar year, an increase of 29% on the previous year, despite the significant challenges and cost cutting programmes facing the industry.
Another sector using the port more in 2015 was cruise and ferries, with passenger numbers increasing on the roll on/roll off service between Scrabster and Stromness by 4% to 125,400 and cruise passengers totalling 3,247, up 45% compared to the 2014 season.
A total of 262,634 boxes of fish were landed in the calendar year, a decrease of 14.6%. General cargo operations decreased reflecting an absence of timber transportation due to the strong pound affecting continental markets. Energy related cargoes, fish cargo imports and tanker deliveries all increased in the year.
Sandy Mackie, Trust Manager for Scrabster Harbour said: “The last year has been encouraging, seeing an increase in harbour traffic and a rise in revenue. It is particularly promising that the statistics reveal our drive to diversify the sectors using the harbour is resulting in increased activity and that our enhanced facilities and capacity is being utilised.
“At a time when oil and gas leaders are embarking on efficiency drives, Scrabster Harbour is proving to be an attractive and cost effective solution.
“Against a difficult economic backdrop, the 2015 figures give us confidence for the future. We are also looking forward to celebrating our 175th anniversary this year.”