Freight News, Sea

Wildlife Sanctuary to support Bathside Bay port project

[ March 26, 2024   //   ]

Tendring District Council has approved a 117 hectare natural habitats and wildlife sanctuary as part of the Bathside Bay port expansion project in Harwich. The new development will create a mixture of estuarine and coastal habitats, including intertidal mudflat and saltmarsh.

Bathside Bay is part of Freeport East, which also includes the port of Felixstowe.

Freeport East chief executive, Steve Beel, said: “Given the planning processes that most other projects face, Bathside Bay is one of the few new port projects in the UK with the potential to service the offshore wind sector in the coming years. Supporting the UK’s 2050 Net Zero aspirations already makes this a genuinely “green” development. 

“However, we recognise the importance of balancing the demands for new infrastructure and development with protecting and nurturing our local biodiversity, both on land and in the marine environment.

“The new natural habitat in Little Oakley reinforces Freeport East’s commitment to biodiversity and improving the quality of green spaces whilst enabling the Bathside Bay development which could help the UK attract global investment and reach its offshore wind capacity.”

Bathside Bay, located adjacent to Harwich International Port and within Freeport East, has already secured planning permission for the development of a new container terminal. Phase one of the project started in 2022 on existing land, and the next phase involves reclaiming the bay and constructing the quay wall, resulting in the creation of up to 122 hectares of new port land.