The first cruise ship to call at Greenock since the Covid crisis effectively closed down the cruise industry was warmly welcomed this morning.
The 169,000-tonne Anthem of the Seas, capable of carrying 5,000 passengers and 1,500 crew on its 16 decks, arrived just days after the Scottish Government relaxed pandemic rules.
Its arrival heralds a busy late cruising season this year at Greenock, with 50 ships booked into the Inverclyde town’s new cruise terminal by mid-November.
The new terminal is part of a £19m-plus berthing and visitor centre development funded by Glasgow City Region City Deal, Peel Ports, Inverclyde Council and the George Wyllie Foundation.
Before the arrival of Covid, it was estimated that 150,000 cruise passengers per annum could pass through Greenock after the new terminal completion – delivering £26 million in annual visitor and crew spend to the Inverclyde and Scottish economy.
Peel Ports Clydeport director Jim McSporran said: “It was exciting to see Anthem of The Seas sail into Greenock today. It’s a symbol that the gradual removal of Covid restrictions which is taking place will soon see the cruise industry return to its pre-pandemic scale of operations and more.
“We’ve a very busy period coming up this year with 50 bookings at the new cruise terminal, and I’m looking forward to welcoming well in excess of 100 cruise arrivals next year.
“Peel Ports Clydeport is ready to play its part in boosting the tourism industry both locally and nationwide as passengers go on to visit tourist destinations throughout Central Scotland.”