Londonderry Port & Harbour Commissioners was first established by Act of Parliament in 1854. As an Independent Statutory Authority the Port has a duty to develop, maintain and operate to the highest standards of efficiency, financial prudence, environmental awareness, safety and security. The Port is independent of Government and is self-financing. All financial surpluses are reinvested in the business for the benefit of future generations of stakeholders.
Originally located in the heart of Derry City, the Commissioners relocated to the current deep water location at Lisahally in 1993. Lisahally Terminal has 440 metres of quay and can facilitate vessels up to 62,000 DWT. The Port is primarily a bulk port and a major importer of oil, coal, animal feed, fertiliser and plywood, all essential commodities for the North West rural region. The organisation has experienced significant growth since 2003 doubling both turnover and profit and has attracted approximately £100 million of inward investment to the region supporting projects including a fertiliser plant, an oil tank farm and a biomass power station.
Today the port handles approximately 2 million tonnes of cargo per annum and the value of trade passing through our regional gateway is estimated at £1 billion. Facilitating the import of essential agri-products the Port is estimated to support approximately 20,000 farms in the North West and various local business sectors including the fuel/oil and construction industries. The organisation also supports an estimated 1000 direct and indirect jobs.
Foyle Port offers a diverse range of services including external marine and engineering services each marketed under the "Foyle" Brand.
Ryan McCready was appointed Chair on 1st January 2024. He previously was a Harbour Commissioner since April 2020. Ryan has over 20 years leadership and operational experience from his previous career within the Ministry of Defence. His more recent positions include Non-executive Directorship within the Aviation and Security sectors and he was an elected representative on his Local Authority.
Christopher Jackson was appointed Harbour Commissioner in March 2020. He is a Councillor on Derry City & Strabane District Council (DCSDC), elected to represent the Waterside DEA in 2014. Christopher is the Chair of DCSDC’s Planning Committee and sits on the Environment and Regeneration Committee. He is Chairperson of The Whistle Project, a Board Member of Advice North West, a Board Member of Hillcrest Trust and a Board Member of Jack and Jill Playgroup. Christopher is a Member of the Port’s Health, Safety & Environmental Committee.
Catriona McHugh was appointed Harbour Commissioner in October 2019. Catriona is a Chartered Certified Accountant. She worked as a financial consultant overseas for almost 15 years, returning to Northern Ireland in 2016. She has provided financial consulting services for a range of public sector bodies in Ireland and the UK. Catriona Chairs the Port’s Audit Committee and is a Member of the Port’s Risk Committee and Pension & Remuneration Committee.
Nigel Robbins was appointed Harbour Commissioner in October 2019. Nigel has over 25 years’ experience within the digital, technology, and telecommunications field. He has experience within the Private and Public sectors. He was a senior executive with Viacom Inc. for 15 years and has developed worldwide businesses. Nigel Chairs the Port’s Risk Committee and is a Member of the Port’s Audit Committee and Pension & Remuneration Committee.
Alan Bissett was appointed Harbour Commissioner in October 2019. Alan is a senior utilities lawyer and has advised on a wide range of corporate and commercial matters at leading firms in Belfast and London. He is a member of the Law Societies of Northern Ireland and of England & Wales. Alan is a Member of the Port’s Risk Committee and Health, Safety & Environmental Committee
Frank Hewitt was appointed Harbour Commissioner in October 2019. Frank’s career spans both the Public and Private sectors. Mr Hewitt has extensive Non-Executive Board Member experience, including former appointments as Chair of Translink and of the Northern Ireland Science Park, and as Board Member of Invest NI, Strategic Investment Board, and Ilex Urban Regeneration Company. He was the German Government’s Honorary Consul in Northern Ireland. Frank Chairs the Port’s Health, Safety & Environmental Committee and is a Member of the Pension & Remuneration Committee and Risk Committee.
The Londonderry Port & Harbour Legislation since 1854 conferred powers on the Commissioners as a body corporate set up in perpetual succession to preserve, improve and manage the Port of Londonderry and do all other things which in their opinion are necessary to facilitate the development of the harbour undertaking. The Commissioners have powers to construct and maintain specific works, to levy dues and to make byelaws.
There are currently eight Non-Executive Commissioners on the Board appointed by the Minister for the Department for Infrastructure for a four year term. Three of the Commissioners are Council Members from Derry City and Strabane District Council and are appointed by the Minister following nominations from the Council.
Londonderry Port & Harbour Commissioners are committed to the highest standards of Corporate Governance. The Board currently has a number of Committees to manage Health & Safety, Risk, Audit and Pension & Remuneration.
THE EXECUTIVE TEAM
Brian was appointed as the Chief Executive and Harbour Commissioner in March 2003. A former Director of Harland and Wolff, Brian has many years’ experience in ship design and maritime economics. He is a Chartered Director, a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Brian is a Past President of the Londonderry Chamber of Commerce and a former Council Member of the Northern Ireland Prince’s Trust, British Ports’ Association and the Confederation of British Industries Northern Ireland.
Captain Bill McCann
Harbour Master, Operations Director & Harbour Commissioner
Bill was appointed as Harbour Master in July 1996, promoted to Operations Director in January 2016, and was appointed Harbour Commissioner in March 2023. He is a Class 1 Master Mariner and spent 16 years in the Merchant Navy with BP Shipping, Souter Shipping and P&O Irish Sea Ferries. He is a Member of the Nautical Institute and a Member of the Institute of Directors. Bill is also the Chairman & Port Security Officer for the Londonderry Port Security Authority.
Chief Development Officer
Ian was appointed in a newly established role of Chief Development Officer in February 2023. Ian has extensive experience in Irish and global power markets and joins Foyle Port from EP UK Investments Ltd, the owner of Ballylumford and Kilroot Power Stations, where he was Director of Corporate Affairs.
Chief Operating Officer
George was appointed as Port Engineer in April 2004 and later promoted to Chief Operating Officer. Previously a Senior Engineer at Harland and Wolff, George has over 20 years’ project management experience in the engineering, marine and infrastructure sectors. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Chartered Director, a Member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and a Fellow of the Institute of Directors.
Chief Financial Officer
Arlene was appointed as Financial Controller in May 2013 having worked in the role of Assistant Financial Controller since 2005. Arlene was promoted to Chief Operating Officer in 2023. She is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland and holds an Executive Master of Business Administration. Having trained and qualified with Moore Stephens Chartered Accountants, Arlene has over 19 years’ experience in the finance sector including Public and Private Sector audit.
The Port’s vision is to grow and constantly improve the business and reinvest our profits for the benefit of future generations of stakeholders. In striving to achieve this, we operate within a value system that underpins our business processes and is based around the key themes of: People; Partners; Planet; and Place. We acknowledge the importance of the Port to the city and North West region, and the need to ensure our business has a positive impact on society and the environment.
High profile events such as City of Culture (2013) and Clipper Festivals (2012 and 2014) come to the region. The benefit in kind and sponsorship provided by the Port over the three key events between 2012 and 2014 was in excess of £250k. These events have provided excellent opportunities for the Port to contribute to the positive experience reported by crews, passengers, and visitors from a multitude of nationalities through ensuring the safe transit of vessels on Lough Foyle, including mooring and security arrangements. The pontoon at Foyle Port Marina, custom designed to be accessible to people with mobility issues, is an inclusive feature that enhances our appeal to a wider social audience.
Continuous involvement in school visits and student placements allows us to promote and raise awareness of careers in the industry among young people, and facilitates valuable work experience for students to help them make career decisions.
Inishowen Maritime Museum & Planetarium
Age Concern - Derry
Strathfoyle Woman's Activity Group Ltd
St Oliver Plunkett Primary School
Older People NW
Older People Northwest
Strathfoyle Community Association
Foyle International Rotary Club
Maiden City Soccer
Foyle Women's Aid
Greencastle Football Club