|NOTES & NEWS |
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ISLE OF MAN STEAM PACKET COMPANY
LADY OF MANN returned to service with the 08:30 Douglas - Dublin sailing Friday October 24. After completion of this weekend's sailings. She will return to Merseyside and is due to enter Langton Lock at noon on Tuesday. She will lay up on Merseyside for a few days before re-entering service on Tuesday November 4, 2003.
She will then sail daily on the Douglas to Liverpool route until Christmas.
ULYSSES - The body of a woman was discovered by fisherman shortly after a search for a ferry passenger was called off by north Wales coastguards.
Emergency crews were alerted after a pile of clothing was found on the outer deck of the ULYSSES at around 03:00 BST when it was still docked at Holyhead ready to sail to Dublin on October 24.
The RNLI all-weather lifeboat - joined by a cliff rescue team - called off their extensive search late on Friday morning after failing to find any sign of the passenger.
When scouring the beach and the ferry port terminal, a spokesman for the RNLI said they "feared the worst".
"We have covered the whole area thoroughly and come up with nothing," he added.
Just a few hours after they abandoned the search, a body was discovered by a fishing boat, two miles from the Kish Lighthouse near Dublin.
North Wales Police - who said the missing woman was her 30s - are continuing to investigate her disappearance.
The Ulysses, set sail for Ireland after a 30 minute delay.
NORMANDY - A woman who claimed she suffered back pain after slipping on the deck of an
Irish Ferries ship, the NORMANDY, had her action for damages struck out with no order at the High Court this week.
Ms. Myriam Demaine Harold (35), a French national who was living in Celbridge, Co Kildare, at the time of the accident on August 10th, 1998, said she had slipped on the deck while carrying her one- year-old child in her right arm.
Her three-year-old child was holding her hand on her left side as she walked along.
After she slipped, she said she felt a really big pain and her breathing stopped. She had difficulty speaking. Her children had panicked. She was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Cherbourg.
Ms Harold said she had experienced problems with her back.
Six months later, she still could not do housework. Two years after the accident, her back had started to improve but sometimes she would still have pain, she said.
Cross-examined by Mr Kieran Fleck SC, for Irish Ferries, Ms Harold said that, as far as she could remember, the surface on which she had slipped was wet. She could not say for sure.
Mr Justice de Valera said he would be taking into account the fact that the plaintiff had two children with her and also that she could not say why she fell. He noted the onus was on the plaintiff to establish her case on the balance of probabilities and remarked that, in his view, as the case stood before him, this was well below the 50 per cent mark.
After a short adjournment, the judge was told that the matter could be struck out with no order.
PENINSULAR & ORIENTAL STEAM NAVIGATION COMPANY
EUROPEAN MARINER called at Campbeltown on Saturday October 25 to load wind farm components for shipment to Larne.
There are to be further sailings out of Campbeltown during successive Saturdays in November, the EUROPEAN SEAFARER should be on those. (The European Seafarer is on Fleetwood this weekend to allow the European Pioneer to do some maintenance.)
NORBAY was scheduled to call at Larne on Sunday October 26 for divers to conduct an underwater hull survey
MARINE INSTITUTE OF IRELAND
Dermot Ahern T.D., Minister for Communications, Marine and Natural Resources turned the first sod at the new €40 million Marine Institute headquarters in Oranmore, Co Galway on October 23, 2003.
Over 160 people will be accommodated at the headquarters which will also house marine laboratories on completion in 2005.
Minister Ahern said the re-location of the Marine Institute in Galway underlined the Government’s strong commitment to regional policy and decentralisation.
The Minister said: “One estimate is that the region’s economy will benefit by €17 million a year. The relocation also brings facilities and skills to the region which will attract international marine research, and provide the conditions needed to forge new knowledge-intensive and internationally-competitive niche marine products and services. The location in Galway will also allow closer links with NUI Galway and the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and will provide access for students and graduates of marine science to national and international research initiatives.”
The Minister said the new headquarters was part of ongoing development of Ireland as a world class centre of excellence for marine research which has included:
· The €32 million Celtic Explorer, Ireland’s first purpose built deep sea research vessel
· A substantial upgrading of the unique catchment research facility at Newport, costing €2.3 million, now completed.
The Minister said the Institute provided the basic scientific evidence which underpinned the New Irish Conservation Box agreed at EU level.
Minister Ahern said, “We had been facing the total elimination of the Irish Box and therefore all fishing activity limitations for foreign fleets in Irish waters. This information demonstrated that, on conservation grounds, restrictions around our coast must be kept in place.”
HISTORIC CORNISH LUGGER TO BE RESTORED
The Cornishman reports that a 110-year-old Cornish fishing lugger has been brought to Newlyn harbourside for major restoration - and hopes are high that she will sail again.
She was last in the port nearly 70 years ago. Work on the massive task has begun by owner John Lambourn, 57, who spent 30 years in Hong Kong . He is the son of artist George Lambourn of Mousehole and younger brother, Sam, is a leader in the Cornish fishing industry. The St Ives lugger 'Ripple' SS19 has had a remarkable history and, says Mr Lambourn, "when restored will be come part of Newlyn's marine heritage."
She was brought by road from Penryn on Monday and 'brought ashore' by crane after 68 years as a houseboat in and around the Fal estuary.
"The 44-ft long overall, 15-tons Ripple is a survivor. As far as is known there are only two other original double-ended sailing fishing luggers left and one of these is on the East coast of America.
"These distinctive fishing boats, peculiar to West Cornwall , were once commonly seen off Cornwall , fishing with nets for pilchards, mackerel and herring.
"This is a unique boat with a long and colourful history. Although now dilapidated, she is to be rescued by a full restoration to seagoing sailing conditions at Newlyn.
"Newlyn was chosen as the ideal location because this is where Ripple landed most of her catch and would have so much to contribute towards the presentation of its fishing heritage envisaged by the Newlyn Fish Industry Forum."
Built in 1894 - at St Ives or perhaps Newlyn - she was registered two years later at St Ives and fished until 1933 under the ownership of the Barber family, through Bessie Barber. The first skipper was William and his brother Matthew died in the lifeboat tragedy of 1937.
Mr Lambourn who has made his home in the port said : "It is not restoration for restoration's sake. People will be able to go on board and we are going to try to give her a new function when the work is complete.
"But she will be returned to full sailing conditions to sail in local waters." The Newlyn Harbour Commissioners have provided a site on land adjacent to Cosalt on The Strand.
This site, which is large enough to take the boat plus some working and observation space, was chosen because it provides an opportunity for the local community - and others who are interested - to watch the progress of the restoration.
This, in turn, will lead to advice and draw out memories and artefacts.
"Such responses will also help fill in gaps in knowledge about these luggers which might otherwise be lost to future generations.
"Advice has been promised on how these boats were built and rigged," he commented. She was originally a sailing lugger, principally by two lugsails carried on two masts. This was later boosted in 1915 by the installation of a 13hp port wing engine.
"Following a bad experience in a gale William Barber decided that Ripple should be lengthened by ten feet. She came to Peake's at Newlyn, sawn in half and ten feet added in her middle. This was probably done in 1927 when two new engines of 26hp were fitted.
"This would have meant the end of sail as the main means of propulsion," John remarked.
"Following a serious engine room fire in 1933 at Newlyn, only put out with the help of the fire brigade, Ripple ceased fishing."
Then came the years as a houseboat on the Fal, 50 of which were under the ownership of West Cornwall man Ralph Tomlin.
After having several other owners she sank at her moorings and had to be taken ashore.
SS 19 will prove a popular attraction in England 's top fishing port in the coming months and years.
Western Morning News reported this week that the first of three planned marine training centres of excellence in the West Country is being set up.
Pendennis Shipyard, which recently announced a £7 million investment in facilities at its Falmouth base, is to establish the UK 's first specialised marine painting and fairing school.
Sir Timothy Sainsbury, chairman of the shipyard, which specialises in building luxury yachts, said: "These are exciting times here at the moment. We are developing a training facility which I hope will be world-class and deliver a world-class product for our customers."
The shipyard, founded in the late 1980s, employs 173 people. It already offers modern apprenticeships in the specialist trades of boat-building, fabrication, welding, engineering, electrical and painting. It is planned that 30 new training places a year will be created by the centre of excellence and 83 new jobs by the entire expansion.
The new centre will concentrate on the painting side to help Pendennis capture the growing and lucrative market in luxury vessel refurbishment.
Adam Corney, co-ordinator for the Regional Development Agency's Marine South West, said Falmouth would be one of three training centres, with Poole and Plymouth .
Mike Carr, Pendennis commercial director, said: "We see training as the key to the future. Our yachts sell for many millions of pounds, and with refit costs alone amounting to the cost of a large house, the quality of paintwork, and a high calibre finish, will be crucial selling points for our superyachts."
Defence Procurement Minister Lord Bach performed the traditional laying of the keel ceremony for the second of the Astute-class submarines being built by BAE Systems at Barrow-in-Furness this week.
HMS Ambush will be one of the biggest and most powerful attack submarines ever ordered by the Royal Navy, and joins HMS Astute, which is currently being assembled on the same site.
A third boat, HMS Artful, will follow in due course.
The nuclear-powered Astute-class vessels will have advanced communications systems and a greater capacity for joint operations than existing Swiftsure and Trafalgar class submarines which the Astutes will replace.
Their ability to carry more weaponry will also make them a cornerstone of UK defence capability.
The submarines will displace 7,800 tonnes when submerged, are almost 100 metres long, and will operate with a compliment of 98 officers and ratings..
They have six weapons tubes, used for launching both torpedoes and missiles, and can dive to depths greater than 300 metres.
They are powered by a Rolls-Royce Pressurised Water Reactor 2, equipped with Core H, which is designed to fuel the reactor for the submarine’s entire service life, thereby avoiding the need for costly reactor refuellings.
The first of the class, HMS Astute, is expected to enter service in 2008, and she and her sisters will be based at Faslane on the Clyde, undergoing refits at Devonport.
After touring the Cumbrian yard and meeting members of the workforce, Lord Bach said: “This ceremony marks an important stage in a challenging project.
“The Astute class will be the most advanced and powerful attack submarine the Royal Navy has ever operated, and these boats will play a key part in our defences for decades to come.
“The Royal Navy has a requirement for nuclear-powered submarines well into the future, and the Barrow-in-Furness yard remains the UK’s centre of excellence for submarine building.
“Submarines are extremely demanding engineering projects, and the Astute class is no exception. I am happy to be able to witness this significant project landmark.”
Around 5,000 people are employed on the Astute programme, which is expected to cost the MOD some £3.6 billion.
NEW NAVAL WARNING SIRENS
Residents in the Torpoint and Wilcove areas in Cornwall are being sent letters to inform them that an additional alert siren is to be brought into service at HMS Raleigh early next month.
The siren is one of the Devonport Nuclear Accident Alarm Sirens, and is designed to ensure that all those in the 2km pre-planned countermeasure zone – which includes Torpoint and Wilcove – will be able to hear the sirens no matter what the weather conditions.
On Monday November 3 the new siren will be routinely tested at 11.30am for the first time, along with the other seven sirens located in and around Devonport Naval Base, which are tested at this time every week.
Although the existing sirens are already audible in this area, the addition of the new siren will mean the coverage is increased to exceed the minimum legal requirement, and will result in some people – particularly in Millbrook, Antony and St John – hearing the siren for the first time.
Letters will also be sent to people in these areas.
The sirens make a rising and falling wailing sound, similar to the old Civil Defence air raid sirens, and this will last for one minute. It will be followed by the ‘All Clear’ – a steady note – for half a minute.
Captain Base Safety Capt John Binns said: “Safety is paramount at Devonport Naval Base and comprehensive proven plans exist to protect the public in the unlikely event of an accident.
“The Royal Navy has an excellent safety record in the operation of its nuclear submarines, but we keep our plans constantly under review.
“It’s a well-known fact that weather conditions can affect the distance at which sound can be heard. The range of the existing sirens have met and exceeded requirements during the vast majority of weather conditions, but we want to be confident that the siren will be audible to all those who need to hear it regardless of the weather.”
Dependent on wind direction, people who are further a field in St Germans, Polbathic, Sheviock, Crafthole, Portwrinkle, Whitsand Bay, Kingsand, Cawsand and Rame may also be able to hear the siren. Public notices have been placed in newspapers to let these people know.
Information on what to do if the sirens are heard other than at 11.30am on Mondays is available on the inside front cover of the BT telephone directory.
In addition, those who live and work within the 2km zone have been given a leaflet entitled What to do in a nuclear emergency.