Port's USP will be handling biggest ships afloat

The first ship to call at the London Gateway on a commercial service put the new port in business today.

London Gateway opened for its first visitor today Credit: ITN

DP World, one of the largest port operators invested £1.5bn into creating the 2.7km quay. The cranes stand on an area that has been built using mud and silt reclaimed by dredging a 100km stretch of the North Sea.

DP World invested 1.5bn to create the port Credit: ITN

London already has two ports on the Thames - Tilbury, upriver, and Thamesport, downriver - but London Gateway differs by being able to handle the biggest ships built.

London Gateway differs from London's other two ports by being able to handle the biggest container ships Credit: ITN

Felixstowe and Southampton, the UK's biggest container ports both have five berths available for ultra-large ships.

London Gateway opens with one berth, a second will be available from next April with more following in line with demand.

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New Thames port opens

The London Gateway - the first new port in the UK for 20 years - opens on the River Thames in Essex today.