CHATS was formed in 1985 to meet demands from Dutch and Belgian trailer operators for Agency services to cover a new Ro Ro ferry service – Kent Line - that had been started between Zeebrugge in Belgium and the port of Chatham in Kent. The first CHATS office opened in Chatham dockyard and the current company name originated from an abbreviation of the original name based on it’s role in Chatham - Chatham Harbour And Transport Services. The Kent Line ferry service was groundbreaking in being one of the first to promote services within easy reach of London reducing haulage costs and breaking the stranglehold of coastal ports.
The role of CHATS was to provide haulage services, customs documentation and marketing of the equipment and services with forwarders and manufacturers in the UK. Freight services initially being very focussed on the Benelux countries and Germany to meet the demands of our partners and ferry users. The service grew rapidly and the company was soon handling in the region of 500 trailers per month through the Port. The success of this service eventually led to the development of Ro Ro Services to several London Ports in Dartford, Purfleet and Tilbury. CHATS followed these developments to Dartford and ultimately to Purfleet where we have been based since 2001 and continue to provide haulage and agency services to and from the London ports.
With the Single Market being implemented in 1992 the demand for customs services was significantly diminished and the company took this as an opportunity and driving force to focus more resources on Freight Services. Expanding both the scope of services and the range of countries covered. We are now pleased to be able to offer a comprehensive range of services both Export and Import to and from destinations all over Europe and Worldwide.