Cruise companies will now be able to start and end itineraries in Liverpool, following a change in policy.
The Department for Transport has granted the city ‘turnaround status’. Previously, it was only allowed ‘stop-offs’, the BBC reports.
The BBC says: ‘The status depends on Liverpool City Council repaying £8.8m of grant aid which it was given for the current stop-off terminal.
‘Liverpool was allowed to build a cruise terminal in 2007 with public funding on the proviso that it was only used for stop-offs, not turnarounds.
‘Rival port Southampton had argued it would be unfair to change that status.
‘But councillors in Liverpool have mounted a long-running campaign, arguing it was a restraint on trade that could cost the Merseyside region £100m a year.’
The BBC adds: ‘The council is leasing the temporary building on Princes Parade during the cruise season from 2012 to 2015 while it determines whether to build a permanent site.’
Meanwhile, The Belfast Telegraph reports Northern Ireland’s cruise industry could soon be worth £30m to the local economy every year.
It reports Cruise Belfast, the marketing partnership between Belfast Visitor and Convention Bureau (BVCB) and Belfast Harbour, believes the luxury liner business is ‘already bringing in £15m in benefits each year’.
The Telegraph adds: ‘However, experts have said that it is not unreasonable to expect the money-spinning cruise business to have at least doubled that figure by 2020.
‘The news comes as it emerged that a record-breaking 43 cruise ships are due to visit Belfast this summer, bringing an additional 75,000 people to the city.
‘The influx of visitors means that the total number of passengers visiting Belfast will have hit the half-a-million mark since the first cruise ship docked in 1996.’
To read the BBC article, click here.
To read the Belfast Telegraph article, click here.