28 NOV 2013
The below extract by Simon Finlay is from Dover Express 28/11/13
A COMMUNITY port proposal should be put to the residents of Dover in a referendum, MP Charlie Elphicke has claimed.
Mr Elphicke spoke after the visit of Ports Minister Stephen Hammond on Monday.
Mr Hammond had a series of one-to-one meetings at the Dover Marina Hotel with town leaders in a bid to gauge local feeling as he considers the future of the port.
Mr Elphicke, who is a vocal supporter of the People's Port community sale idea, said: "The minister will be looking actively at all options now. But I do feel that if a proposal, whatever it might be, is proposed that it should be is put to the people in a referendum for them to decide.
"I welcomed the minister's visit and it's really important that he listens to all interested parties in charting the way forward. There is a real opportunity here to secure the future of the port and transform the docks, harbour areas and regenaerate other parts of the town."
Dover Harbour Board, the People's Port, ferry companies, Dover District Council and the town council all had audiences with the minister.
A DHB spokesman said chief executive Tim Waggott spent aboutround 40 minutes with Mr Hammond.
He added: "It was a good, positive discussion. They talked about the thriving performance of the port and our regeneration vision."
People's Port spokesman Neil Wiggins said: "It was a very positive set of meetings. I believe the minister heard all that he needed to hear."
In his weekly Dover Express, Mr Elphicke writes: "I feel it is essential that Dover becomes a form of community port."
Read more: http://www.dover-express.co.uk/Dover-people-decide-town-s-future-referendum/story-20228283-detail/story.html#ixzz2lwgghRbh
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08 NOV 2013
A Statement from the Hon. Stephen Hammond MP, Under Secretary of State for Transport with special responsibility for ports and shipping has been issued this morning.
The statement which confirms the current Chairman of DHB, George Jenkins, as Chair effective January 1st 2014 and goes on to emphasise the importance of the port to the nation is reproduced in full below.
"Shipping and Ports Minister Stephen Hammond has today (8 November 2013) re-appointed George Jenkins as Chair of the Dover Harbour Board. The appointment will take effect on 1 January 2014.
This follows the minister's decision earlier this year to refresh the board through the appointment of 3 new non-executive directors with special responsibilities: Erik Ostergaard for port marine operations, Frank Martin for local partnerships, and Bob Lane for regeneration.
Mr Hammond praised the work that has been done by the refreshed board and executive team in improving relationships with port users, and re-launching engagement with the local community. He noted that this major port has continued to operate effectively and efficiently, as we all saw during the recent storm.
Mr Hammond said:
I am keen that Dover Harbour Board builds on the foundations put in place over recent months, and ensures the port's position as a significant part of our transport infrastructure, both now and in the future.
There is more to be done to ensure that one of the UK's major ports realises all possibilities of regeneration for the town and citizens of Dover. I intend to make sure that this happens, and that all parties are properly involved to achieve what we all want – a thriving Dover.
The minister plans to visit Dover later this year, to see first hand what has worked well since his last visit to the port in January, and to understand what more might be achieved.
He intends to hold discussions with interested parties, to inform ongoing work on how government, the port, its users, and the local community can best interact for the benefit of all."
The DPPT is very pleased to read of the Minister's personal involvement with and commitment to ensuring that the port realises all possibilities to deliver a thriving Dover and look forward to being able to welcome and meet with him when he comes to Dover.
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