London Container Terminal sits within the Port of Tilbury, London’s major port, providing comprehensive and advanced logistics services at the heart of European’s largest consumer market. The port offers unrivalled connectivity to and from the capital and across the South East via rail, road and barge. The port operational zone covers an area of 1,252 acres and boasts 56 operational berths spanning a total quayside of 10.2km. Most of the berths are inside the panamax-sized lock but there are also deep-water berths on the River Thames suitable for all vessel types. LCT is part of a dynamic and diverse port which boasts 31 independent terminals specialising in the handling of paper, forest products, grain and bulk commodities, construction and building materials and recyclables plus 120 supply chain companies adding their expertise to the vibrant port community.


As part of the Port of Tilbury, London Container Terminal is connected with over 5,000,000 square feet of warehousing including temperature controlled, bonded and automated facilities. Serving London and the South East market, Tilbury is ideally placed to maximise the benefits of distributing directly to customers from a port. Consequently, Tilbury has become the location of choice for retailers and distributors of containerised product to position their distribution centres. There are over 120 supply chain companies onsite offering the latest logistics and warehousing solutions including Culina Group, Maritime Transport, Howard Tenens, London City Bond, and Denholm Logistics. As the UK’s number one port for forest products, Tilbury has some of the most advanced storage facilities in Europe. More than 3 million tonnes of paper and other forest products are handled at the port each year including everything from jumbo reels of paper to plywood and panel products. Enterprise Distribution Centre (EDC), one of the first fully automated warehouses in the UK, offers a 32m high bay equipped with auto cranes and conveyors serving 29,000 product locations. One of the world’s largest e-commerce businesses selected Tilbury for its distribution hub and operates a 2,000,000 sq ft facility at London Distribution Park and the UK’s premium drinks logistics specialist and chilled cargo logistics operators call Tilbury home with 225,000 sq ft and 200,000 sq ft facilities respectively.

Off Quay Container Storage

The primary function of London Container Terminal is to facilitate the efficient and safe flow of cargo between vessels, container stacks and transport. As such limiting dwell times and preventing terminal congestion is our top priority which is why charging structures and processes are aimed to keep cargo moving. We know that our customers face many challenges across complex supply chains and flexibility on storage, demurrage and delivery times is favourable. In order to alleviate pressures on the terminal and wider supply chain disruptions we have created a dedicated off quay storage facility for longer dwell containers within the port estate and in close proximity to LCT. This facility offers all the benefits of port-side storage, including container accessibility and high levels of security, at a cost-effective price point. The Port of Tilbury is ideally placed to maximise the benefits of storing and distributing containers directly from the port straight to the heart of the main UK population.

Rail Linked & Ready

Enabling goods to be transported in the most environmentally friendly way is important to us, which is why we have invested in 4 rail terminals across the port to enable increased freight train accessibility. The Port of Tilbury had a 10-fold increase in rail freight traffic during 2021 and further growth is expected as more business seek to decarbonise supply chains. The port has invested significantly in the creation of new and enhanced rail terminals creating capability to load / unload the longest trains on the national network, with trains operating to south Wales, the North West, The Midlands and Scotland supporting the retail, e-commerce, food and drink markets. London Container Terminal has an integrated railhead with sidings compatible with a straddle carrier operation for fast train turnaround. Tilbury has a bespoke bulk railhead supporting the construction and waste sectors and Tilbury2 has been developed with an extensive rail terminal supporting both intermodal and bulk train movements. These open access terminals connect into the W10 gauge cleared Tilbury loop and onwards to the national rail network and all major UK rail freight interchanges. With daily rail services running to the UK’s largest retailer hubs and capacity to take the longest 775-meter trains on the network, we offer market-leading low carbon distribution solutions, enabling clean, green and sustainable supply chains. Major retailers rely on Tilbury’s rail infrastructure to deliver product to and from international markets and distribution hubs across the UK.

Ro-Ro Know How

Our modern ro-ro terminals connect the UK directly with Europe, Scandinavia, Africa and South America enabling growth in the shipment of containers, trailers, trade cars, machinery and project cargo. Tilbury invested £250m to expand the port and in 2020 opened a new roll on/roll off ferry terminal at Tilbury2 for importing and exporting containers and trailers to northern Europe, in partnership with P&O Ferries. Tilbury2 highlights our commitment to supporting the advance of this transport mode and the transition of cargo flows from high-carbon accompanied trailer options to more sustainable unaccompanied transport modes. Tilbury2 has added 500k units of freight capacity to the UK market. Tilbury as a whole hosts 16 freight ferry services per week from Europe, including two daily ferries from Zeebrugge, a bi-weekly service serving Scandinavia plus East and West Africa trades. The port handles the import and export of trade cars and heavy plant equipment for a number of market leaders as well as a wide-range of break bulk cargo on specialist platforms. We’ve handled it all and have the capacity to do more.

Port-centric Leaders

The port of Tilbury’s expertise in portcentric logistics is unrivalled. Portcentric logistics places distribution centres alongside main port activity, reducing double-handling and transportation by collating and directing good more effectively on the next stage of their journey or direct to the consumer market, without moving away from the multimodal hub. This creates significant savings in the supply chain costs and is beneficial for the environment. Port customers can distribute within an hour to most businesses in London and the South East.

The key aim of the portcentric logistics is to bring the supply chain closer to the end user. By using Tilbury, customers can achieve immediate savings in carbon emissions by reducing road miles compared with other routes. Cargo can be consolidated, reworked or processed at the point of entry and a number of independent service providers offer cross-docking, devanning and warehousing operations to reduce logistics costs. Bonded and temperature controlled facilities are also available. As the closest container port to London we limit road miles and offer an alternative low-carbon barge solution for final delivery of products into one of Europe’s largest consumer markets and fastest growing e-commerce market. We have also invested in 4 specialist rail terminals at the port to facilitate greater take-up of greener transport links to and from the port. It all adds up to a more sustainable option.

Port of Tilbury

The Port of Tilbury has been serving London and the South East for over 130 years, evolving supply chain solutions to meet the future requirements of businesses reliant on the port’s dedicated terminals. The Port handles over 16m tonnes of cargo each year across 56 operational berths and 31 independent working terminals, covering a vast array of commodities and vessel classes quickly and efficiently. Equipped with high-tech machinery and the latest IT systems, the Port offers industry leading vessel and gate turnaround times, whilst maintaining high operational and safety standards. For inland transport, there are 4 onsite railheads, fast access to the M25, and low-carbon barge transport to central London. So while we’ll be delighted to welcome you, it won’t be for long.

Over the past ten years, the port and its customers have invested over £1 billion to ensure facilities are state-of-the-art and have the capacity to grow. Now as part of the Thames Freeport, one of the UK’s new special economic zones, Tilbury is ready to accelerate the provision of low-carbon logistics services. You can be assured the port has the network, experience, expertise, and resources to deliver so come and be part of our port community.

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Please take a look at Port of Tilbury from the air. Our aerial tour will guide you through the business areas within the Port of Tilbury.

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An overview of activities and services from the Port of Tilbury