First Minister opens Smith Embankment

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SCOTLAND’S First Minister, The Rt. Hon Alex Salmond, officially opened Peterhead Port Authority’s Smith Quay and Smith Embankment yesterday (Monday), at a ceremony attended by around 300 invited guests.

Mr Salmond, accompanied by his wife Moira, arrived at the port at 10.45am for the official opening of the facility, which has been two years and development and delivered in 18 months at a cost of £33 million.

Speaking at the official opening, which was attended by 250 invited guests, First Minister Mr Salmond, said: “This world-class new berth at Peterhead Port will create jobs and secure millions of pounds of investment for the local area.

“Our fishing industry is the lifeblood of Scotland’s coastal communities and the Scottish Government is committed to working with and supporting our fishing communities. The new harbour facility is a magnificent addition to the port and will build on Peterhead’s record landings last year and reputation as Europe’s number one fishing port to further strengthen its position in the future.”

After an official welcome, the guests heard from port authority chief executive, John Wallace, who outlined the ambitious undertaking which the board was now confident would bring both the port and the town of Peterhead rich rewards for many years to come.

Mr Wallace told the gathering: “Today formally marks a turning point in the fortunes of this port because this development clearly shows what can be accomplished by the joint efforts of people with a commonsense of purpose and duty.

“The tale of the Smith Embankment Development is a story imbued with success and accomplishment. It is a story of unfailing hope, triumphing over complicated odds when we consider the debilitating and catastrophic effects on similar projects due to the world’s most significant financial collapse.

“We all accept that time is a critical commodity in any business, no less so in the affairs of this port and this development addresses our previous shortcomings directly. Quite apart from the financial climate, the working climate was frenetic which is why it is all the more remarkable the project was completed on time and on budget; a considerably achievement for all parties.”

Full story in our Fishing Review