Dr Paul Richards, member of the King’s Lynn Conservancy Board responsible for the navigation and pilotage of the port, takes a regular look at the port activity. Pictured is Swe-Carrier loaded with timber entering the docks on July 26.

Over June and July, 23 cargo ships arrived and 22 departed our Wash port, with 13 and 10 vessels in ballast respectively.  

Its trade for the six months to June 30 was 201,369 tons compared to 167, 093 tons for the same period in 2019. This represents a modest but significant increase in trade.

Scandinavian wood was again the principal import and there were five shipments. Three vessels carried part cargoes to Lynn having first discharged timber at Seaham (2) and Hull (1). 

The Swe-Carrier and Scot Isles arrived in late June with full loads direct from Iggesund and Varberg in Sweden respectively. The regular reader will note that the Swe-Carrier is a familiar visitor to Lynn and, at more than 98 metres long, one of the larger ships to enter the docks.  

Three cargoes of aggregate for the construction industry were transported from Randers in Denmark to Lynn on what is a regular run. The British ship Paula C carried two big loads and the Kongsfjell the third cargo. 

The level of activity in house and other building projects determines the volume of timber and aggregate imports.  

There were three single shipments from major European ports. The Pilsum delivered a cargo of fertiliser from Amsterdam before departing in ballast; the Eems Sprinter arrived from Bordeaux on the French Atlantic coast with maize and soya beans; the Wilson Grip sailed to The Wash from Rotterdam with a load of vermiculite (a mineral used as insulation material).

During June and July, Lynn’s major export was scrap metal to diminish the mini mountain on Bentinck dock. Six ships departed The Wash. Four cargoes were carried by the Seg (3) and Sandal (1) which are Wisbech operated smaller vessels. 

Their destinations were Antwerp (twice), Ghent and Rotterdam. The Danica Hav and Nordica Hav had already taken scrap in June to Antwerp and Ghent respectively.

More than 3,000 tons of beans were shipped to Damietta in Egypt by the Wilson Belfast which had arrived in ballast. This was formerly a regular trade. Another cargo of beans was carried by the Neuland to Bremen in northern Germany. 

Lynn and Bremen are both members of the New Hanseatic League set up in 1980 to develop business and tourism intercity links.

Barley from English farmlands remains a staple export from Lynn and three ships departed The Wash with cargoes. 

In June the Antwerp arrived at the docks from Hamburg in ballast before loading barley for Amsterdam. Another full cargo was transported by the Konstantin to Ghent in Belgium, which has fine historic buildings.  

The Fri Marlin sailed with malted barley to Buckie on the east coast of Scotland, which is another regular run.

The Association of British Ports (ABP) and the King’s Lynn Conservancy Board (KLCB) have a close working relationship which ensures effective management of port operations despite the coronavirus epidemic.  

The St Edmund was at sea in June to refurbish navigation aids in the approaches to Lynn and Wisbech (within the KLCB port limits). The dredger Cherry Sand arrived at Lynn in July to tackle the settlement of silt which occurs every time the dock gates open.  

The pilot boat United was taken to Wisbech for the annual lift-out to clean and paint the hull combined with repairs.  

Seaborne trade is absolutely essential to national welfare with by far the greatest percentage of Britain’s exports and imports dependent on merchant shipping.