For some months now a couple of P&O ferries have taken safe harbour in Leith just next to Ocean Terminal. One has already gone to Rotterdam, and now the second will depart on Saturday.

The two cross channel ferries caused a little local disturbance when they arrived due to engine noise, but that soon settled once they were shut down and transferred to generator power. Forth Ports recognised that the level of noise from the ships’ engines could not continue long term, and sourced generators to provide power but improve the situation for residents. The ships have not been required by P&O over the summer due to a downturn in ferry travel following the pandemic.

The Pride of Burgundy will be moved around a bit on Friday in preparation for departure from Leith tomorrow.

A spokesperson from The Port of Leith said: “The Port of Leith is exceptionally busy at the moment during these unprecedented times for the maritime industry. Forth Ports has been supporting our customers by providing a temporary safe haven for a number of non-operational vessels during the lockdown. 

“We provided berths to two non-operational P&O ferries, one of which departed last month (The Pride of Canterbury) and the second, the Pride of Burgundy is preparing to leave the port this weekend after a five month stay.

“The ferry requires to transfer their power source from generator to engine over the coming days ahead of her planned departure on Saturday. We recognise that there will be some disturbance and we thank the local community for their patience.

“The Port has been fully open through the pandemic and our key workers are providing a vital service for our customers to keep goods and services moving.”

There are a few other ships coming and going in Leith. Two of these, the Caledonian Vanguard and the Caledonian Vision, have also been berthed beside Britannia. Locals have said that these too have been running engines and lights 24/7 which has caused some disturbance, but one of them has now moved away. The council’s Environmental Health Officer has confirmed they are keeping an eye on noise and pollution levels in the port. They have told us today that the last noise survey results had not changed significantly.

A spokesperson from The Port of Leith said: “We take the welfare of our residential neighbours very seriously and ensure that any noise, emissions and light levels from vessels berthed within our ports are below the required thresholds. We are aware of the concern raised by the resident and we continue to work with the relevant monitoring authorities and our customers to ensure that no statutory limits are exceeded.”

Pride of Burgundy left Leith in September