Membership benefits

Joining the British Ports Association

The BPA is the national membership association which represents the interests of the ports industry to all organisations and individuals who influence the sector.

Membership is an indication of responsible port management as it commits ports and other organisations to staying updated on the latest regulatory and governance rules as well as other industry news.

BPA membership is not just about port leaders, it also enables the further development of the next generation of port professionals. We have built up an excellent reputation based on providing a service to our members and delivering. In a high risk and fast moving sector you might ask “why aren’t we members of the BPA?”

Full Port Authority, for individual and ports groups, and Associate Membership, for non-port businesses, application forms can be found at the foot of this page along with our Membership Brochure.

To apply, simply complete the relevant form below and email it to

About the organisation

The BPA is an inclusive membership organisation, representing ports of all sizes and ownership types including local authority, private and trusts.

We currently have over 100 port members, which between them collectively manage in excess of 400 ports, harbours, terminals and piers located throughout the UK. This includes most of the major port operators as well as many others.

We also represent ports in the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and a range of other organisations and networks connected to the sector.

The BPA is well linked with various Government Departments, Devolved Assemblies and in the post Brexit era we still follow developments from Brussel. We are regularly consulted on legislation and policy and act as the voice of our members in these discussions.

The ports sector is changing rapidly, with new safety, planning, regulatory, environmental and other legislative requirements creating new demands on the industry.

We help our members shape, understand and meet their regulatory requirements.


We have an elected Council who decide strategy and funding, while being supported by a number of Regional Committees and Working Groups specialising in areas like Environment, Marine Navigation, Smaller Ports and European issues.

We also share a range of information electronically and consult specific groups on particular legislative changes or proposals.

These groups (listed below) are open to all Port Members and meet regularly around the UK:

  • Access to Ports
  • Brexit News (circulation only)
  • Communications & Port PR Professionals Network
  • Cruise Ports Network
  • Energy Ports Network
  • Environment & Sustainability Policy (joint meetings with the UKMPG)
  • Ferry (Ro-Ro) Ports
  • Finance Managers
  • Fishing Ports
  • HR & Employment Network
  • Marine Pilotage (joint meetings with the UKMPG)
  • Municipal Ports
  • Northern Irish Ports
  • Port Infrastructure (all industry)
  • Procurement subgroup
  • Property Network
  • Regional Ports
  • Scottish Ports
  • Scottish Environmental Policy
  • Scottish Local Authority Ports
  • Security & Resilience (joint meetings with the UKMPG)
  • Welsh Ports (UKMPG invited)

Membership Categories and Costs

Full ‘Port Authority’ Membership this is for ports, harbours and port groups such as private companies or local authorities that own multiple ports and terminals. Full Members set the BPA’s policy and strategy through the BPA Council (our board) and our individual working groups and committees. Subscription fees are calculated on a member’s financial turnover and a port’s ability to pay. This means there are several different subscription bands which can be found detailed in the application form, but annual prices range from £1002.76 to the upper cap of £14,509.80 (plus VAT).

Please note, port groups, such as those owned by private companies or local authorities with several ports and terminals, can join their ports as a single member. This means groups do not need to have multiple memberships for each of the individual ports they operate and is much more cost effective. This is an excellent offer and can mean a wider network of port professonals can benfit from the BPA’s activities and services.

Associate Membership – allows organisations that are not port authorities to join and be involved in the BPA network. These include engineering companies, environmental consultancies, insurance specialists, accountants, finance companies and law firms. We also invite contributions for the BPA’s Port Futures programme from our Associate Members. The programme is a thought leadership platform for our members and wider industry, looking at innovation and future trends and developments in the sector. We are keen to work with companies and specialists working at the cutting edge in their area of maritime expertise to challenge, provoke and inform. This might take the form of articles or short reports to infographics or videos to examine emerging trends and innovative new ideas in the ports and shipping industries which will lead to short and longer term changes in the ports industry. We work with members in jointly publishing work and promoting it both with our members but also in the media.

Annual Associate Membership for 2024 is £1,171 + VAT.

Our membership year runs from 1 January to 31 December and fees will be prorated for those joining later in the calendar year.

All Full and Associate members receive:

  • Circulars and news – alerts to the latest developments and port related policy news including industry news, a monthly trade dashboard and a digest of all our circulars.
  • Help and assistance – in port related policy issues and links to relevant Government officials and contacts.
  • The BPA Monthly Update – a comprehensive review of the main issues facing the industry, alerting members to major changes in policy and legislation.
  • A weekly snapshot of the latest news from our sector.
  • BPA website  access to the member’s area and site services – including free listing of member job adverts and press releases (both only full members).
  • Members Directory – listing in the directory and access to its functions.
  • Events  invitations to our various events and workshops throughout the year.


We also hold a number of high profile and popular events throughout the year providing the only occasions when representatives from ports across the UK can come together:

  • Online events and webinars – covering a range of topics and issues.
  • AGM and BPA Annual Lunch – an annual event in London each spring and an excellent networking and social event to which members can bring guests.
  • Annual Conference – held at a different port location each autumn and an unrivalled opportunity to meet other members of the industry.
  • Reception at Scottish Parliament – our popular annual Scottish autumn reception for members to meet with MSPs, Scottish Government and industry contacts.
  • Training and Workshops – a number of these events are held throughout the year which members can attend.

If you require additional information about joining the Association please contact us on 0207 260 1780 or email