Portsmouth Port jobs saved by wind blade contract

A Portsmouth Port cargo firm has said 18 jobs have been saved after it won a contract to handle wind turbine blades.

MMD Shipping Services said the “multimillion-pound” deal with MHI Vestas was larger than a fruit-shipping contract it lost in 2017.

The decision by fruit importer Geest Line to move to Dover had threatened 58 out of the port’s 230 jobs.
MMD director Mike Sellers said 30 workers had volunteered to leave while 10 redundancies were compulsory.

The 10-year deal starts this spring and contracts MMD to collect 80m turbine blades from a new painting facility at Fawley, Hampshire, ready for shipping.

Stevedores, who had sometimes been at work when no ships were in port, were now on “flexible” contracts with no reduction in hours, Mr Sellers said.

There had also been “slight pay reductions” for some staff, while others had seen pay increases, he added.

A coaster will ship 80m wind turbine blades from Fawley to Portsmouth – image from Portsmouth City Council

Story from BBC News.

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