April 19 - The first project cargo has been transported on Peel Ports' barge service on the Manchester Ship Canal, in the UK.

Until now the Liverpool to Manchester service has carried only an increasing level of containers, but transport of a giant chemicals tank to the Ineos facility at Runcorn saw the start of non-containerised traffic.

The 30 m high, 20 tonne tank arrived at the Port of Liverpool from The Netherlands on ACL' Atlantic Concert, and was then carried by barge on its onward journey on the Ship Canal to Runcorn.

Stephen Carr, Peel Ports Mersey's head of business development for the Port of Liverpool and Manchester Ship Canal, said: "This is the latest development in our objective to increase usage of the Ship Canal as a logistics hub that drives down cost and CO2 emissions.

"Delivery of this project cargo from the Port of Liverpool to Runcorn is a departure in that is the first non-container cargo to use our barge service, and we are keen to expand and further develop that side of the business.

"This further increase in the use of the Ship Canal demonstrates the desire of many companies to use water to get their product as close to their customer as possible."

Andrew Wormald, senior sales & operations manager at Abnormal load Services (International) Limited (ALS), Peel Ports' customer on this project, said: "The sheer size of this cargo made the use of road transport problematic, and the use of Peel's barge service was the perfect solution. It also saved us on costs and carbon emissions for this leg of the journey from Holland."