Owl can only assume, after May says she has confidence in “Failing Grayling” yet again today that he must have some Theresa May selfies in his possession …..
” … Grayling is under further pressure to explain how Seaborne was awarded the contract after weekend reports that Ramsgate authorities could not afford to run the port.
The contract was cancelled a day after Grayling contacted Thanet district council to ask it to postpone a budget that would have shut down parts of the port for use by freight shipping.
Questions remain about the viability of Ramsgate’s port for use post-Brexit. It can accommodate ships up to 180 metres long, but modern ships are typically 230-250 metres.
John Davis, a member of the Ramsgate Action Group, said: “You can’t run a double-decker bus service out of a single-storey garage on the side of a bungalow – that’s the problem.”
Questions remain about the procurement process after the DfT relied on an emergency exemption provided for by the Public Contract Regulations Act to award the contract. Eurotunnel has accused the government of “anti-competitive” and “distortionary” behaviour.
Meanwhile, Grayling’s decision to award contracts to three ferry companies, including Seaborne is being challenged at the high court. Eurotunnel, which operates the Channel Tunnel, says the contracts totalling £108m were awarded through a “secretive and flawed procurement process”. But the Department for Transport (DfT) argues that the “extreme urgency” of preparations for Britain’s departure from the EU on 29 March justified the process.
At a hearing in London on Monday, Eurotunnel’s barrister Daniel Beard QC said the procurement process for “additional capacity for transport of goods across the English Channel” had been “undertaken without any public notice being issued”.”