Issue - meetings

Berth 4/5 - Port of Ramsgate - Additional Funding

Meeting: 29/07/2021 - Cabinet (Item 750)

750 Berth 4/5 - Port of Ramsgate - Additional Funding pdf icon PDF 124 KB

Additional documents:


Cabinet discussed the request for additional funding for works on Berth 4/5 at the Ramsgate of Port. Members were advised that in order for the council to fulfil its contractual obligations to Bretts, the council had to provide a berth for them at all times for use in connection with their permitted activities. A detailed background to the decision was shared at the meeting in order to provide a context for this cabinet decision. For several years the berths provided were becoming problematic in terms of the need for constant maintenance and repair and ultimately came to the end of their useful life.


Initial feasibility and design work for the project to replace the existing Berth 4/5 was focused on a fixed quay, however following an approach by BAM Nuttal the use of a floating pontoon became an option. Following a technical assessment by our consultants, the option of a floating pontoon was more cost effective and would fall within the capital cost allocated to the project.


It was also reported that on the 28th June 2019 the council gained external planning advice, that reliance could still be placed on part 18 of the General Purpose Development Order. On this basis, a prior approval application could therefore be made without the need to undertake an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) or to make a full planning application. The meeting was further advised that based on this advice, officers proceeded on that basis.


The two options of a fixed quay or floating berth were presented to a cross party Ramsgate Port Working Party who then decided unanimously that the floating berth (pontoon) should be developed as this represented best value. Legal advice was also sought to confirm that the pontoons could be purchased in accordance with the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. The advice received was that a compliant tender pack and performance specification should be produced for the purpose of competitive tendering.


The documents provided additional information which allowed a better understanding of the scale of the project that the council’s lawyers had not had prior to the initial advice. Subsequently their advice was amended to say that a direct award could be progressed and would be lawful. Record of decision for the realignment of the capital programme was signed by the Port Portfolio Holder. The Chair of the Overview & Scrutiny Panel subsequently called in this decision and the legal advice was shared with the members of the Panel.


There was then a change in administration and the new Cabinet requested a report outlining all the options available to procure a replacement berth. At the Cabinet meeting held on the 16th December 2019, Option 4 was approved which was a competitive tender for a single replacement berth. This was a change in procurement approach from the previous decision to do a direct award. Following the competitive tender process Bam Nuttal where the preferred supplier for the replacement berth, now only utilising just one of the two pontoons.


On the 17th June 2020,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 750