Brixham will play host to a high level and innovative event this week as part of the Fostering Long-term Initiatives for Ports (FLIP) project.

FLIP is a €3,8m cross border project 50% co-financed by the  European Regional Development Funds (ERDF) under the Interreg IVA France (Channel) - England territorial co-operation Programme.

The event will take place from Tuesday 23 to Thursday 25 September in a new dedicated bi-lingual training facility that has been created to support the building of capacity for maritime communication in the Channel area. The FLIP project funding has been essential in supporting this new initiative. It comes at a key time for Tor Bay Harbour and the port of Brixham, because the local Brixham Coastguard is due to close later this year and the facility will double up as a harbour emergency response centre.

The training will be interactive and based on a number of activities and scenarios that port managers can face in their everyday activities including emergency planning, navigation and pilotage issues. The event focuses on maritime English communication in the context of liaison with the offshore energy industry and supply chain, practical VHF radio handling in emergencies, first aid and resuscitation and basic English vocabulary in the port environment. Aimed at port personnel from FLIP partners and the Channel Ports Association in France (APLM), the training is being led by Western Training, a Plymouth based specialist maritime and fisheries training association that has previously delivered training to the fisheries industry and the Omani Navy.

After the event has been delivered the asset will be managed by Torbay Council’s Harbour Authority as a training and conference room facility that can also serve as a local maritime emergency response centre. It has been equipped with WI-FI, VHF radio and AIS (Automatic Identification System) ship tracking aerials, as well as everything expected from a modern training facility and conference room.

Councillor Nicole Amil, Chair of Torbay Council’s Harbour Committee said: “The FLIP project has helped us to turn around an under-used asset into a productive and useful facility. As a FLIP partner we have always been committed to delivering our projects as part of the overall programme. In April we hosted a very successful cross border workshop - opened by the Mayor at the Berry Head Hotel - and we look forward to welcoming back our FLIP partners and other delegates to this Maritime English Training event.”



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