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    MerseyMart wrote:
    phil maccavity wrote:
    The argument all comes down to this. Liverpool was provided with grants for £17m specifically for a calling cruise facility. All other UK ports were basically Ok with this as it complemented rather than adversely affected their existing cruise business. The money would not have been given if turnrounds had been mentioned AND LIVERPOOL COUNCIL KNEW THIS. Within a very short time span LCC had approached the, then, Labour Govt (who had initially granted the UK cash) for permission to change the terms of the grant. This was rightly refused. They tried again under the Tory regime and got a provisional thumbs up which has been challenged by other UK cruise ports (led by Soton) none of whom have been able to use public money for their facilities and are crying foul. Liverpool have offered to pay back part/all of the £7m grant but ONLY IF THE CRUISE SHIPS CALL. Bearing in mind the original business case for the £17m calling cruise terminal hasd proved to be rather 'creative' to say the least, LCC are not really playing by the normal business rules Oh and, of course, there is the attrempt to get Portsmouth as a 'major south coast cruise port' to support the initial application for a change of use. Interestingly they are now against the idea as it could potentially harm their own trade. No one is against Liverpool having a nice, shiny cruise terminal but only if it is provided on the same risk based financial terms as applies elsewhere in the UK
    No Phil, the argument comes down to this. Liverpool has received public money certainly but that money has not given the port any advantage over Southampton, it has merely removed a disadvantage. Since when did liners at Soton have to tie up in mid-river and be served by tender vessels?

    Had we been given a new terminal free of charge, then your claims would have some justification - but we don't have a new terminal at present and, as you have rightly pointed out, when we do get it it will most likely be a marquee - in the short term at least.

    Are you really expecting us to believe that Liverpool signed up to an agreement that IN NO CIRCUMSTANCES would they apply for turnaround facilities? (In other words, they would have to build a completely new terminal should they want to develop turnarounds).

    Repaying the grant money as and when cruise ships make use of the turnaround facilities makes total sense. If cruise companies don't want to use Liverpool for turnarounds, then the terms of the initial agreement would not have been compromised.

    Also, the claim that Southampton has not been given public money for their facilities beggars belief. We have identified some £60m of public investment in road and rail infrastructure that has directly benefited the port of Southampton and enabled it to compete well into Liverpool's hinterland.

    Surely the question you should be asking about Portsmouth is why they supported Liverpool - have they had similar experiences with Soton?
    MerseyMart for one you know you applied for those grants for a visiting facility but had no intention what so ever to honour it as before you had applied you already had the appeal written out to change it's use.
    This was said by the leader of your council!
    As for Portsmouth I can't believe you! I give you more credit than that!
    Portsmouth were building a new terminal for smaller ships than visit Southampton you were on about a facility that would compete with them so why did they back you?
    With you going about it all wrong they could see you in a mess for years to come but with out someone else's support would you have continued fighting for it?
    They can now fight to win the same size ships that your terminal would attract on a regular schedule but their terminal is built yours is years ahead because of this.
    the word con comes to mind can't you see that?"
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Cunard quashes rumours of transatlantic cruises from Liverpool

Daily Echo: Queen Mary 2 Queen Mary 2

Southampton-based Cunard has categorically denied new reports that the company is to operate transatlantic voyages from the Mersey.

Cunard, which operates Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria from Southampton, is angry over what it says is totally false information.

In a terse statement the company said: “Cunard Line would like to clarify that they have no plans for transatlantic voyages from Liverpool to New York in 2012, 2013 or in the future.

“Cunard will continue to operate its successful transatlantic voyages from its home port of Southampton.’’

Many believe the reports are just another element of Liverpool’s campaign to persuade the Government that the northern port should be allowed to become a “turn-around’’ base for cruise ships.

It is now also being claimed in Liverpool this long-standing row has been “resolved’’, opening the way for cruise ships to operate from the city.

In fact the Government has made no decision and the EU, which supplied part of the public funding, is also taking a close look at Liverpool’s plans.

The long running wrangle centres around Liverpool’s attempts to use a multi-million pound handout of public money to develop and expand dockside facilities.

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Southampton and other UK docks, which rely purely on private investment, are demanding Liverpool pay back all of the public funding so competition between the ports is on a “level playing field’’.

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