A SCOTTISH shipping company is planning to run ferries between Rosyth and the Netherlands. 

Plans are believed to be at an“advanced” stage by TEC-Offshore. 

With the prospect of long queues of lorries and cars at Dover becoming more likely due to Brexit approaching, the company wants a direct ferry connecting with Europe. 

TEC-Offshore, based in Perthshire, is the firm behind the plan which would see freight and passengers carried on daily ferries between Rosyth and Eemshaven, a fast-growing port in the Groningen area of the north of the Netherlands which has good road links to Germany, central Europe, Scandinavia, and even Italy and the Balkans.

The TEC Offshore group which has nearly 50 years experience in marine services, has already secured the ships to form the ferry service, and the expertise to sail them.

The company is in talks with the two ports and the Scottish Government over the arrangements for the service, which would be the first to transport passengers directly between Scotland and the continent in almost a decade.

The freight-only route between Rosyth and Zeebrugge in Belgium closed last year and work has been carried out in recent months to try and reinstate it. 

The Scottish company feels the new service could be up and running as early as the end of October and would enable Scottish freight lorries, in particular, to avoid the worst effects of Brexit by sailing direct to the continent.

Timber and food and drink exports would be helped greatly by direct links to Europe with tourists expected to use the service, too.

David Kellas, joint managing director of TEC-Offshore, told our sister paper 'The National': “Negotiations are at an advanced stage with both ports and we are speaking with the Scottish Government.

“Scotland has been wholly reliant on freight and passengers coming in through southern ports and we have absolutely suitable ports on the east coast of Scotland so why should we not utilise them?

“We have been looking at this for some time, and clearly Brexit is a catalyst, but we at TEC Offshore believe absolutely that Scotland requires a ferry service carrying freight and passengers between the continent and our east coast.”

Councillor Altany Craik, Convener of Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning & Transportation Committee at Fife Council, said: "It's something that we would like to see back in place. 

"It would be good for business, good for Fife and good for Scotland."