#BerthingTrials – A pair of car ferries were on the Waterford Estuary link of Passage East-Ballyhack yesterday but only one vessel was actually operating in service, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Foyle Venture (44 vehicle/300 passenger) was carrying out 'berthing trials' for the Passage East Ferry Company service operated by the routine ferry F.B.D. Tintarn (28 vehicle/130 passenger). The south-east service provides commuters a short cut connecting Waterford City and the Wexford region.
The Ulster ferry had previously stopped winter service of the Lough Foyle Ferry Company's Greencastle-Magilligan Point route. Sailings are to resume between Donegal and Derry in Spring 2017.
The established ferry service in Leinster was founded in 1982 by Derek Donnelly who announced his retirement from the business earlier this year. In that timeframe Dunbrody and Edmund D have run the shuttle service until the current ferry FBD Tintarn. This ferry has been in service for a decade having made a debut in December 2006.
As Afloat covered in May the operation was sold to Frazer Ferries, the Limerick based company behind Carlingford Ferries that has proposed a new service in Northern Ireland. As for the Passage East based ferry FBD Tintarn, the prefix refers to FBD Holdings plc which retains a 70% share in the business, arising out of a legacy investment.
Afloat noted Foyle Venture had berthed in Waterford City earlier this week along the Frank Cassin Wharf, the former Bell Liner container terminal.
The ferry has since returned to the same city berth which in recent years was occupied by a passenger freight-ferry that had a wartime role. Afloat will have more on this soon.