Passenger figures are good news for ferry routes through western channel ports

Passengers through Portsmouth, Poole, Plymouth and Newhaven Increase 

Ferry statistics released today by Discover Ferries, the industry body for ferry operators, show promising signs for tourism through western channel ports this year with news that the number of people taking a ferry to France, Spain or the Channel Islands has increased by 6.5% to 639,000 trips in the first four months of 2016.

The number of people taking cars through western channel ports has also increased this year according to Discover Ferries’ IRN Ferrystats – up from 174,000 to 195,000 – a 12.4% per cent increase.

The good news follows a strong year in 2015 for western channel ports. Last year 2.9 million trips were made through Portsmouth, Poole, Plymouth and Newhaven, up from 2.8 million in 2014 and the highest level for four years

Bill Gibbons, director of Discover Ferries speaking at the fortieth anniversary of Portsmouth International Port celebrations said: “Western channel ports are part of a major success story for ferry travel. We’ve now seen several years of steady growth in the number of people taking a holiday by sea, enjoying both the continuous investment made by ports and ferry companies and the convenience and value ferry travel.  It’s wonderful to mark that achievement with this week’s anniversary celebrations in Portsmouth. Portsmouth City Council had the vision to build the new ferry terminal in Portsmouth harbour right at the end of the new motorway, M275, in 1976 with Brittany Ferries as their first customer. At the time I was working on a new ferry route to the Channel Islands which launched in 1978– a route now operated by Condor Ferries –  and it has been truly fantastic to see the port develop, thrive and grow over the past four decades driven by the expansion and huge investment made by Brittany Ferries. Its success has been an important element in the ongoing development of the ferry sector and we look forward to further growth for decades to come.”

The western channel ports are part of a wider UK growth story for ferry travel. In 2015 all Britain’s UK ferry operators carried 8.61 million cars in 2015, up 1.3% on the previous year. Overall passenger figures on 75 ferry routes held up at 38.90 million.

Visit www.discoverferries.com –for up-to-date information and news about travelling by ferry.

ENDS

Discover Ferries press office, Four Travel

Contact: Arthur Duncan/Lesley Davidson/ Debbie Hindle

Email: discoverferries@fourcommunications.com  | Tel: 0203 697 4200

Editors’ Note

Discover Ferries “Ferrystat” passenger figures compiled by IRN Research

The western Channel is defined as any sea routes west of Dover from the South Coast of Britain.