From his office overlooking Cherbourg docks, general manager Yannick Millet points to trailers destined for Ireland that belong to Amazon and FedEx, new customers and a signal of a potential big shift in post-Brexit trade. Confronted by red tape and delays after Britain’s messy exit from the European Union, Irish traders are shipping goods directly to and from European ports, shunning the once-speedier route through Britain. “You see the shift in supply chains right here,” he said. All five operators connecting Ireland to mainland Europe have increased ferry services in the past nine months, with some bringing forward planned sailings and others moving larger ships away from quieter British routes to meet new demand. Millet forecast Cherbourg would handle 9,000 trucks in January, equivalent to almost a quarter of what passed through the French port annually before the COVID-19 crisis. For decades, the land bridge offered Irish traders the swiftest, most reliable route to continental Europe. It involves a short sea crossing between Dublin and Holyhead in Wales and then a hop between Dover and Calais. Every year 150,000 lorries would use the route. But post-Brexit paperwork and delays in customs clearance are snarling up the process, adding hours or days to journeys and ratcheting up costs. Many companies are switching routes. “This is a game-changer,” said Chris Smyth, commercial director at Ireland’s Perennial Freight. Demand was huge for freight space to ship to Cherbourg, Dunkirk, Rotterdam and Zeebrugge, he added.