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Harbour wins £3m boost as giant cruise ships edge closer

Scrabster Harbour in Caitness is undergoing a huge upgrade, creating 28 new jobs.

Scrabster Harbour: The port will be upgraded.
Scrabster Harbour: The port will be upgraded. Scrabster Harbour

An upgrade of Scrabster Harbour in Caithness has secured a further £3m investment.

The cash from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) will enable the redevelopment of the existing St Ola pier to meet demand from cruise ships and offshore energy supply vessels.

A new piled quay wall and pier deck will be installed to expand the existing pier.

Both the inner and outer side of the pier will be dredged, while a reclamation area will provide storage for cargo handling.

Cruise ships up to 250m long and supply vessels up to 170m will be able to use the upgraded pier.

On completion, the £17m project is expected to support 28 new jobs.

It forms the second part of a wider harbour master plan of phased development by Scrabster Harbour Trust (SHT).

Phase one saw the £17.6m redevelopment of the old fish market pier to create a modern multi-purpose quay facility renamed the Jubilee Quay, which opened in 2013.

Eann Sinclair, HIE area manager for Caithness and Sutherland, said: "Improving infrastructure in this way helps bring more new business to Caithness and Sutherland and to support local industries. 

"It will also help attract and retain high quality engineering and labour skills in the area."

Sandy Mackie, Scrabster Harbour Trust manager, added: "The HIE award is tremendous news for the port and the area, marking another important milestone in our efforts to deliver the St Ola project."

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