DI Andy Horton assists Portsmouth International Port

DI Andy Horton was called to assist Portsmouth International Port kick start their 40th anniversary celebrations with the launch of an exhibition showing the development of the Port over the years.  OK, so it wasn't actually Andy Horton who showed up in person but me and I took him along for good company in the form of the latest in the series, Fatal Catch

Pauline Rowson at the 40th anniversary exhibition opening Portsmouth International Port

The Portsmouth  International Port, features in my DI Andy Horton crime novels, because it is where Andy often boards the police marine launch piloted by Sergeant Elkins and PC Ripley to cross the Solent to the Isle of Wight or to travel around Portsmouth Harbour or to the outlying harbours of Langstone and Chichester.  In the Horton novels you will find that the Port is often referred to as either the Continental Ferry Port or the Commercial Port, this is what us Portsmouth locals have called it for years but it has recently undergone re-branding to become the Portsmouth International Port to reflect its burgeoning market.

The International Port, owned and operated by Portsmouth City Council has grown extensively since its formation in 1976 when initially it offered  just one route to France from a small section of reclaimed harbour front. Now it is known as Britain’s Best Connected Port with more destinations than any  other UK Port. The  Port is also a key destination for fresh fruit and vegetables from all over the  world.

Four decades since the first ferries departed from France the Portsmouth International Port has seen 90 million passengers, 25.5 million passenger vehicles ad 8.5 million units of freight come and go to Europe on 135,000 ferry crossings.

Pauline Rowson centre with Julie Blackwell Purple Agency, and Martin Putnam, Manager, Portsmouth International Port

I also took along Andy Horton in the seventh in the series, A Killing Coast. The display in the terminal building shows the development of the Port over the years and contains some wonderful items from the 1970s along with a Mini from the era and fashions.  Anyone is welcome to visit, not just ferry terminal passengers and it is well worth browsing the display and having a coffee in the Costa lounge in a bright relaxing setting and as a bonus watch some of the freight ships and and ferries sail in or out.  The display runs throughout the summer.


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