THE Port of Tyne is celebrating a record breaking number of cruise calls this season.
A record 36 cruises have visited the Port of Tyne since April and around 80,000 cruise passengers have passed through the Port’s International Passenger Terminal in North Shields.
This represents an increase of 80 per cent on the previous year and already 34 cruise visits are provisionally booked for next year.
Port of Tyne chief executive Andrew Moffat said: “Success in the cruise and ferry business is especially significant in terms of the positive economic impact on the local area, supporting tourism-related businesses and sustaining in excess of 1,800 jobs in the tourism sector.
“Last year the Port was recognised by travel website CruiseCritic.com as the UK’s Best Port of Call, so it’s great to be able to celebrate that during our best cruise season on record.”
Almost half of the cruise ship’s calling at the Port were ‘turnaround’ cruises, meaning more passengers than ever were able to start their holiday from the Port of Tyne – and for the first time to Mediterranean destinations, while the other half were transit cruises, welcoming visitors from all over the world to North East England to explore the sites and find out what the region has to offer.
Although this may have been a bumper season for the port, there are fears for the future, in terms of competition from Liverpool.
MPs are appealing to the European Union and Government officials to take action against Liverpool City Council to stop hosting vsits by cruise ships, amid concerns it could hit trade at the Port of Tyne’s North Shields ferry terminal.