Grayling looks to EU to dig him out as ferry fiasco continues

A dredger from the Netherlands was put to work in Ramsgate yesterday as preparations for the ferry company with no ferries were put in place.

The Dutch dredger was spotted clearing rubbish, weeds and excess mud at the Kent site to prepare for potential extra freight trade crossings.

Seaborne Freight is seeking to reopen Ramsgate-Ostend service, although it is yet to operate a scheduled ferry service.

In fact, the firm is so small it qualifies as a small enterprise so the £14 million contract was awarded uncontested without an open tender being announced.

Yesterday it emerged that the terms and conditions on the ferry-less ferry company’s website appear to have been cut and pasted off a takeaway delivery.

Apparently they had lifted the small print, complete with mentions of ‘meals’ and ‘orders’.



The government insisted due diligence was carried out before it awarded the contract, adding: ‘This section of the terms and conditions on the company’s website was put up in error. This is being immediately rectified.’

Pic: Hans Hillewaert, a dredger at Hoek van Holland near Rotterdam, Netherlands.

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