IRISH SEA FERRIES CALENDAR 2010
The popular Ferries of the Irish Sea Calendar 2010 still available via Ferry Publications for anyone who hasn't got yet.
Copies are also available for sale in the Terminal Shop, Larne Harbour and in the Topaz Filling Station in Dublin Port.
BAI SA - BRITTANY FERRIES
SUPERFAST V has been sold to Brittany Ferries by Attica Holdings for €81.5m with delivery scheduled for February 2010. It would appear that she will be based at Portsmouth and operate to Santander and Cherbourg. It is speculated that 5 UK - Santander sailings will be operated each week. Two by PONT-AVEN, two by SUPERFAST V and one by CONTENTIN. BARFLEUR sailings to Cherbourg from Poole will cease, though NORMANDIE EXPRESS will continue to serve Poole during the season.
DFDS / NORFOLK LINE
DFDS have announced the acquisition of Norfolkline from A. P. Moller - Maersk for € 346 million in a cash and share deal. A.P. Moller - Maersk is to become a major shareholder in DFDS with 31 % of shares.
DFDS’ and A. P. Moller - Maersk have entered into an agreement under which DFDS acquires Norfolkline for a consideration of € 346 million. The acquisition creates Northern Europe’s leading sea-based transport network by combining two leading shipping companies. Combined pro forma revenues will be € 1.5 billion in 2009 and a combined workforce, of 6,200 employees.
A perfect match
”This is a perfect match,” says DFDS’ CEO Niels Smedegaard. “Norfolkline is a leading ferry and logistics company with a strong route network covering the North Sea, the English Channel and the Irish Sea, combined with a considerable logistics operation. This means, that DFDS’ network in the Baltic Sea and the North Sea is expanded to include two new markets, the Channel and The Irish Sea. We both serve passengers and freight customers and can now provide transport solutions spanning the whole of Northern Europe – from Russia to Ireland.”
The driving force behind the acquisition is DFDS’ network strategy. “Through this acquisition we gain greater scale and come closer to our vision of building a European sea based transport network. The integration of our companies will generate considerable synergies and we expect this transaction to improve our ability to offer our customers more and improved services as well as improve our earnings level once a market recovery sets in. I am really looking forward to working with our future colleagues from Norfolkline to develop our services further towards our customers,” says Niels Smedegaard.
Consideration and ownership
The debt-free purchase price of € 346 mill. consists of a cash payment of € 170 mill. and shares in DFDS equalling 28.8 % of the share capital. Including an additional purchase of shares, A. P. Moller - Maersk’s ownership will equal approximately 31%.
“We are looking forward to becoming a major shareholder in DFDS and are convinced that the new company will create value for its owners,” says Søren Skou, Partner and member of the Executive Board of A. P. Moller - Maersk.
The transaction is subject to a number of conditions, including satisfactory approvals by relevant competition authorities.
SAGA MOON is believed sold to Ferry TMC of Mexico and due to be renamed SANTA MARCELA
DÚN LAOGHAIRE HARBOUR
As speculation continues over the future of HSS sailings to Dún Laoghaire continues it appears that the harbour company issued a tender during November for the former fast craft berth (berth 4) which was used by STENA SEALYNX vessels. The refurbishment was to include the existing linkspan, installation of new fendering.
Cork County Council is to invest €200,000 in the new Cork-Swansea ferry, the MV Julia, which is set to sail on March 1, 2010.
The Fastnet Line, is currently raising working capital from private companies and venture capitalists. The Fastnet Line is issuing bonds at €50,000 each, which are repayable over a four-year term.
County manager Martin Riordan won backing from all 48 councillors yesterday for the local authority's investment. The council has also promised additional money to market the new service and councillors want their counterparts in Kerry and the Government to put their hands in their pockets to aid the venture.
Ger Power, the council's head of finance, said that under the Local Government Act of 2001 it was entitled to take such action if it was considered desirable to promote community interest. Mr Power said the cost of the bond will be charged to the reserve established from the sale of its interests in the Swansea-Cork ferry company in 1995.
That company ceased trading in 2006 and it is estimated that since then the lack of sailing has cost the south-west region?150 million in lost tourism revenue. Mr Riordan said he was particularly impressed with the fundraising carried out by West Cork Tourism and the fact they had already purchased their ferry.
"I've never seen such a successful fundraising initiative," the manager said.
Cllr Noel Harrington (FG) said the council wasn't alone as other corporate entities had purchased bonds. He added that he was anxious to see Fáilte Ireland get involved in marketing the ferry as soon as possible.
Cllr John O'Sullivan (FG) praised the ferry owners and said their business plan proposed that restarting the service would provide a €40m a year boost to the region.
Cllr Alan Coleman (FF) said that Kerry would also benefit and its county council couldn't stand by and not invest.
"The 'Merchant Princes' should also come on board. Corporate Cork also needs to step up to the plate," he said.
Cllr Jim Daly (FG) said several companies had already invested in the bonds, including the Clona Food Group which had spent €300,000.
Mr Coleman suggested that the county manager and county mayor lead a delegation to Minister for Enterprise Mary Coughlan seeking Government investment.
Mr Riordan said he would discuss that issue with West Cork Tourism and if they wanted a delegation he would be happy to go on it.
ISLE OF MAN STEAM PACKET COMPANY
MANANNAN entered Cammell Laird #5 dry dock on Friday December 18 for refit.
BEN-MY-CHREE - On Tuesday December 15 a technical problem was experienced on the morning sailing to Heysham. The ship developed a fuel transfer pump fault. Due to tidal conditions at Heysham in the interests of safety the master decided to have repairs undertaken before entering the harbour. She arrived Heysham around 16:00. The evening round trip from Douglas was cancelled.
RFA SIR PERCIVALE - finally arrived at Canada Graving Dock, Liverpool on Wednesday December 16, 2009. She had departed Marchwood (Southampton) under tow of tug BRAVEHEART on Sunday December 13. She will be demolished along with RFA GREY ROVER at the ship recycling facility.
LIVERPOOL CRUISE TERMINAL
In a written reply the junior UK transport minister Paul Clark has turned down a request from Liverpool City Council to allow turnaround cruises from the council-run Liverpool Cruise Terminal which was built using a grant from the European Regional Development Fund and the North West Development Agency.
Mr Clark says that the original grant decision was made on the basis of the benefits to local tourism from port calls, normally lasting a day. It was assessed that there was unlikely to be any significant distortion to competition in the market for port of call cruise services resulting from the provision of grant. It was however judged at the time that changing the use of the terminal to permit turnaround cruises to operate from that location could raise competition issues in relation to other ports operating in this market.
Earlier this year Liverpool City Council asked the Department for Transport if it could change the use of the terminal to allow turnaround. The Department has concluded that the proposed change of use would be likely to have “an unfair and adverse effect on competition between Liverpool and other cruise ports”.
Mr Clark's statement says: “In making the competition assessment, account was taken of information from a number of other ports which provide cruise opportunities on a similar scale to Liverpool and serve overlapping customer markets within Britain.
The evidence demonstrates that it would be unfair to allow one port to benefit from a publicly
funded development when competitors have found, or would have to find, private money to achieve the same objective.”
He adds: “Liverpool City Council has had considerable success in developing its cruise terminal to attract some of the largest cruise ships in the world. I hope this business continues to thrive. The market for supplying turnaround cruises is, however, a different and highly competitive one. It is right that that business within this market should go where customers get best value without distortion of the market by subsidy.
It is for the Port of Liverpool to consider whether there are options to develop the turnaround cruise business at Liverpool on a purely competitive basis.” [MARITIME GLOBAL NET]
MARITIME & COASTGUARD AGENCY
The Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA) have announced that 5 foreign flagged ships were under detention in UK ports during October 2009 after failing Port State Control (PSC) inspection.
Latest monthly figures show that there were 5 new detentions of foreign flagged ships in UK ports during October 2009.The overall rate of detentions compared with inspections carried out over the last twelve months was 3.45% this is slightly up from Septembers twelve month rate.
During the month of October, 150 Port State Control inspections were carried out in the UK. A total of 39 vessels had no deficiencies raised against them, 78 had between one and five deficiencies, 24 had between six and ten deficiencies, 6 had between eleven and twenty deficiencies and there were 3 vessels inspected that had more than 20 deficiencies.
Out of the detained vessels, 2 were registered with flag states listed on the Paris MOU white list, 2 were registered with flag states on the black list and 1 was with an unlisted flag state.
A 1,494 Gt. General Cargo was detained in Rochester Kent because the emergency generator and the GMDSS Radio batteries were inoperative. The maintenance of the ship and equipment was not according to SMS. This was the third detention of this vessel since 2007.
SHIPS DETAINED IN OCTOBER 2009
Date & Place of detention: 01/10/2009 – Belfast
Vessel Name: LUGANO (Bulk Carrier)
IMO No: 9244087
Company: Massoel Meridian Ltd
Classification Society Bureau Veritas (BV)
Recognised Organisation: Bureau Veritas (BV)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: Bureau Veritas (BV)
Summary: 16 deficiencies 9 grounds for detention
The vessel was detained in Belfast for 4 days because there were major non conformities in the maintenance; documentation; resources & personnel; plans for shipboard operations and emergency preparedness. Deficiencies included the rescue boat was not ready for immediate use, the steering was disconnected and seized, the electric start was disconnected, the aft buoyancy tank was full of water and the righting bag was lashed down. The embarkation ladders – rope at hard eyes was rotten; the vessel familiarisation was poor and the chief officer was unable to identify the davit launch or throw over rafts. Other deficiencies included; 2 lifebuoy lights were not working and the port and starboard rescue boats davit slewing limit switches were seized. The vessel was released on 04/10/2009.
Date & Place of detention 05/10/2009 –- Newport
Vessel Name: B. INDIA (Bulk Carrier)
Company: Portunato C & Srl
Classification Society: Lloyds Register (LR)
Recognised Organisation: Registro Italiano Navale (RINA)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: Registro Italiano Navale (RINA) Lloyds Register (LR)
Summary: 21 deficiencies 2 grounds for detention
The vessel was detained in Newport because the fire and abandon ship drills carried out showed lack of emergency preparedness by the ships crew and officers. A major non conformity was identified in respect of the maintenance of ship and equipment, which was not according to SMS.
Deficiencies included; no records of rest on board for the master; the emergency generator was not operational under load; the surveyors identity was not requested when they boarded the vessel; the fire main was holed and hydrants leaking. In addition there were cockroaches in the galley; the meat room temperature was not as required and the fish room was not operational, also there was no hot water available in the galley.
The vessel was still detained at 31/10/2009.
Date & Place of detention: 07/10/2009 – (Silvertown)
Vessel Name: CHRISTINE O (Bulk Carrier)
IMO No: 9116137
Flag: Antigua & Barbuda
Company: Meridian Marine Management
Classification Society: Germanischer Lloyd (GL)
Recognised Organisation: Germanischer Lloyd (GL)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: Germanischer Lloyd (GL)
Summary: 41 deficiencies 7 grounds for detention
The vessel was detained in Silvertown for 14 days because the starboard lifeboat was inoperative; the ballast, fuel and other tanks had inoperative valves; there were a number of toilets that did not flush and the emergency lighting, batteries and switches were inoperative. Other deficiencies identified included: the engine room and galley fire detectors were masked; the saveall drain hole bolts were missing; the emergency generator was not holding the load; the tank gauge valves were held open in the engine room and steering gear flat. A major non conformity was identified in respect of the maintenance of ship and equipment, which was not according to SMS. The vessel was released on 20/10/2009.
Date & Place of detention: 14/10/2009 – Rochester
Vessel Name: DANA 1 (General Cargo)
IMO No: 7310973
Company: JSG Frim.
Classification Society: Shipping Register Ukraine (SRU)
Recognised Organisation: Shipping Register Ukraine (SRU)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: Shipping Register Ukraine (SRU)
Summary: 37 deficiencies 6 grounds for detention
The vessel was detained in Rochester for 12 days because the emergency generator and the GMDSS radio batteries were inoperative. Major non conformities were identified in respect of the emergency preparedness; the maintenance of the ship and equipment and the crews lack of familiarity with the ship. Deficiencies identified included: the port lifeboat could not be launched; manlines port and starboard were rotten; the escape ladder was missing from the generator room and the galley fire extinguisher was empty. In addition the galley was dirty; the grease traps missing and the ventilation dirty; the portside main deck was slippery and the hydraulic hatch controls were leaking oil. This vessel, which had been previously detained in 2007 and 2008, was released from the current detention on 25/10/2009.
Date & Place of detention: 19/10/2009 – Southampton
Vessel Name: VINALINES GLORY (Oil Tanker)
Company: Thome Ship Management
Classification Society: Det Norse Veritas (DNV)
Recognised Organisation: Det Norse Veritas (DNV)
Vietnamese Register of Shipping (VRS)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: Vietnamese Register of Shipping (VRS)
Summary: 16 deficiencies 5 grounds for detention
The vessel was detained in Southampton for 5 days because the maintenance of the ship and equipment and the resources and personnel were not according to SMS. A major non conformity was identified in respect of these issues. Deficiencies included: the secondary means of starting of the emergency generator was inoperative; the pressure gauges at the emergency fire pump were inoperative; and the portable fire extinguisher used for stand by during loading operations was discharged. In addition senior officers had not undergone formalised Amos training and were unable to quickly find relevant inspection and maintenance records and instructions for the life - saving and fire fighting equipment. The vessel was released from detention on 23/10/2009.
Many people will remember the magnificent John Brown built steam yacht NAHLIN which spent some years berthed in Liverpool whilst undergoing some preliminary restoration work
NAHLIN is a yacht previously owned by the Romanian Royal Family. NAHLIN is one of the last of three large steam yachts constructed in the UK. She was built for Lady Annie Henrietta Yule, heiress of Sir David Yule, was launched in 1930 and carried a crew of 58.
Lady Yule ordered three small private cruise ships in 1929 from John Brown & Company, Clydebank with NAHLIN being the first built. In 1934 NAHLIN was classified as one of the biggest private cruise yachts ever built in the U.K.
In 1936 NAHLIN was chartered by King Edward VIII and used by him and Mrs. Wallis Simpson during their love affair. The yacht was bought in 1937 by the Romanian Royal Family and renamed LUCEAFARUL and later LIBERTATEA.
She was owned by the Romanian Ministry of Culture under order no. 3041, and in service as a charter yacht, a sailing museum of yacht building and development as well as a floating restaurant on the river Danube.
After the Romanian revolution the yacht was sold to a privatised company and in 1999 NAHLIN returned to British waters and today is registered in her home port of Glasgow.
She spent a considerable amount of time in Liverpool, berthed at Sandon Dock where much early restoration work was undertaken.
On July 27, 2005 NAHLIN departed Liverpool on board the semi submersible barge carrier CONDOCK V and taken to Germany.
Restoration has been underway at Blohm & Voss, Hamburg for some time and she was due to undertake sea trails on Monday December 14.
PENZANCE HARBOUR / SCILLY LINK
A stark warning was issued by the Government yesterday that crucial funding for a sea link between Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly may be lost amid deadlock over plans to enhance it.
The Department for Transport (DfT) said the limbo over plans for a new ferry terminal linking the Isles with the mainland could see the money it would provide, which makes up the bulk of the £44 million cost of the scheme, held back.
This could see the go-ahead for the link being postponed until around the time of the General Election, when whichever party wins is expected to make massive cuts in public spending.
"There is a possibility of the scheme losing its priority status and the funding may be deferred," a DfT spokesman told the Western Morning News. The news comes after Cornwall councillors sensationally rejected proposals to build a single passenger and freight handling facility for the ferry in Penzance.
An alternative split site scheme was due to be discussed at a Cornwall Council Cabinet meeting today, but the agenda item was withdrawn at the last minute.
It leaves the £44 million bid, vital for the economy of Penzance and the Scilly Isles, in limbo and with the clock ticking.
The DfT deferring the money would be the worst possible case for the Cornwall Council-led Route Partnership consortium, which is behind the plans.
The department's spokesman said Cornwall Council should act quickly. "In order for this major scheme to proceed, it is now for Cornwall Council to submit an approved business case at the earliest opportunity," she said. "This will require all the relevant statutory procedures, such as listed building consent to have been completed at a local level.
"Any major change to the scheme at this stage would result in Cornwall Council having to submit a new business case for re-appraisal."
West Cornwall MP Andrew George said he would be "calling on the Shipping Minister [Paul Clark] to intervene with me in an attempt to salvage this project."
On Monday, members of Cornwall Council's strategic planning committee threw out a bid for a single passenger and freight handling facility, known as Option A, in Penzance.
The decision prompted jubilation from campaigners who feared it would destroy the town's heritage, as well as warnings from businesses who said it would ruin the local economy.
Cornwall Council's Cabinet was due to discuss the alternative Option C for a "split-site" facility at their meeting today.
However, the agenda item was withdrawn to allow further discussions to take place.
The report which would have been presented made for interesting reading however, detailing spiralling costs for a split-site passenger and freight terminal.
It says overall building costs for Option C were estimated at £200,000 less than Option A. But, a shipping company considering tendering for the route estimated the costs of shuttling freight from an out-of-town depot to be an additional £330,000 annually.
A year long delay before Option C was ready was estimated to cost an extra £5 million, due to inflation in construction charges and exchange rates in paying for the new vessel.
Most worrying is that the report suggests Cornwall council tax payers would be saddled with debt for an extra 18 years, with Option A paid back after 12 years but Option C paid back after 30 years. This is because Option C is more expensive to deliver and the higher operating costs would mean a lower charter fee – the amount the operator pays to Cornwall Council. If Option A went ahead, Cornwall Council would expect to pay off its £10 million debt in a decade, allowing subsequent surplus to fund a new vessel.
The double whammy of higher cost and lower annual income would take 30 years to pay off and fail to provide a replacement ship at the end of the period. The comments were dismissed as "jiggery-pokery" by John Maggs, spokesman for Friends of Penzance Harbour, which is supporting Option C.
Meanwhile news of the rejection was sinking in on the Scilly Isles with many people calling Radio Scilly to express their disgust. At a full meeting of the Council of the Isles of Scilly yesterday, debate on the subject was suspended until discussion could take place with Cornwall Council.
[WESTERN MORNING NEWS]
It is seven years since the former SEACAT SCOTLAND departed from the Irish Sea however Andrew Moore was in Hurghada recently and Andrew photographed her. She is now named AL HUDA 1.
SHIELD has been secured on a time charter by Northlink to operate on Nortlink services to Orkney and Shetland replacing the 38 year old HASCOSAY.
Like HASCOSAY the new ship can also accommodate up 12 passengers but the twin berth cabins are now en suite.
NorthLink Chief Executive, Bill Davidson said: "I'm delighted that we have secured this vessel which I feel sure will be welcomed by our many freight and livestock customers. HASCOSAY and her crew have done a sterling job for us over the last seven years but her age is beginning to tell and to secure reliability going forward as well as the necessary space to meet demand the time was right for us to replace HASCOSAY".
Plans for a new fast ferry link between South Wales and Devon have taken a major step forward.
Operator Severn Link, which last month announced plans to launch first regular fast ferry service across the Bristol Channel, connecting Swansea and Ilfracombe, has taken delivery of the first ferry in its fleet.
The 360-passenger, 34-knot Kvaerner FlyingCat FASTCAT SHANKLIN passenger catamaran has been bought from Isle of Wight operator WightLink for a seven-figure sum. It is the first delivery in a two-vessel deal due to be completed in the new year as part of the £3m new ferry link which will create an initial 40 jobs.
But it is thought the new route between Swansea and Ilfracombe will create hundreds more jobs by providing a major stimulus for tourism and day visits between Wales and the West Country.
If the Swansea to Ilfracombe route is a success, more links could follow, with Penarth to Minehead possibly among them.
The ferry, which previously operated under Wightlink ownership, has now been lifted from the water at Portchester in Portsmouth and is currently undergoing a full exterior repaint, rebranding and overhaul.
Once the repaint is complete, Severn Link will move the as yet unnamed ferry to its new base in Swansea, where a full interior refit will commence prior to the vessel going into service in March.
The entire refurbishment is expected to cost in the region of £100,000, with all suppliers for the interior refit being sourced wherever possible from Swansea and South Wales.
Geoff Metcalf, managing director of Severn Link, said yesterday: “Completion of the purchase by Severn Link of the FastCat Shanklin from Wightlink Ferries brings closer to fruition the company’s plans to run ferry services in the Bristol Channel commencing in spring 2010.
“This excellent modern vessel will make a crossing from Swansea to Ilfracombe fun, fast and affordable. Severn Link is currently in the process of obtaining the necessary approvals and weather permits from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, which will all be in place prior to the new vessel being transferred from Portsmouth to Swansea.”
The passenger-only ferries will run all year round taking around 50 minutes to complete the crossing.