Port of Lynn's £500,000 project on King's Lynn landmark silo set for completion
A half-a-million pound project to refurbish the landmark silo at the Port of Lynn is due for completion at the end of July.
Modernisation and repair work on the interior of the concrete tower which sits besides Edward Benefer Way and which can seen from miles away, began in March.
It is one of the first major developments undertaken at the port since manager Kim Kennedy was appointed to the role just six months ago.
She explained that the silo, although it belonged to ABP, had previously been leased out to a tenant, who last summer had "shut up shop" and vacated the building.
"I could see that it was not being used. It provides 6,000 tonnes of storage. Inside the tower there are 40 silo bins, which are fantastic for grain storage and will be kept cool in the concrete building. There has been a huge amount of interest from customers already. We are expecting the first cargoes to use the facility to be received by the end of this month."
As the top of the tower is being used by nesting peregrine falcons, work on the exterior is on hold.
Another area which Kim is investigating is increasing the efficiency of port weighbridges, which are also used by external hauliers.
"We are always looking to improve the service for our customers. During harvest we are extremely busy and we are investigating ways of refining operations so the service operates more smoothly and it will benefit everyone."
With regional input from ABP Ipswich, the flat storage facilities at Lynn are also being reviewed to maximise their potential use.
Said Kim: "Growing the port in a sustainable way is the way forward with more tonnage and more vessels."
The port has recently invested £30,000 in a new bagging plant to expand its services and sealed a deal with a leading UK distributor of crude vermiculite.
Kim took over the port manager's role last year having been head of terminal operations and passenger services at Luton Airport, where she worked in several areas during her career there spanning nearly 30 years. Her next step would have been to take on a directorship role, but as none was available, she decided it was time for a change.
"When I started to look at what industry best fits my skills, one would have been rail and the other was maritime. There are huge similarities as they are all about moving people and cargoes.
"What appealed to me about ABP was its values, such as safety and putting customers first."
Kim is determined to put the Port of Lynn into the heart of the community. Earlier this year she attended the official opening of an exhibition at True's Yard marking the 150th anniversary of building the Alexandra Dock.
The Lynn News, in association with ABP and True's Yard, is running the Stories of the Sea competition to mark the special anniversary. Visit www.abports.co.uk/news-and-media/ for more details
Kim is also considering the possibility of holding an open day at the port in future so visitors can see behind the scenes.