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Displaying items by tag: Stena Line Freight

#SuperfastCharter – The pair of 'Superfast' ferries serving Stena Line's Belfast-Cairnryan route have been extended on a charter contract with Tallink until August 2019.

The extended period is a further development of the company's freight business on the North Channel route between Northern Ireland and Scotland. The route offers up to 12 sailings daily with the Superfast vessels, Stena Superfast VII and Stena Superfast VIII on the 2 hour 15 minute crossing.

Since the inaugural sailings of the Superfast ferries in November 2011, they have boosted capacity to the route, service reliability and a steady increase in freight volumes. On board, freight drivers benefit from dedicated facilities of a lounge with a restaurant. The Superfast lounges feature first class style reclining seats.

According to Stena Line Freight, they continue to broaden business by offering new services, for example, a fuel-facility in Loch Ryan Port, Cairnryan and with Add Blue now available in addition to diesel.

The terminals at Belfast Harbour Freight hub are in close proximity for hauliers by combining operations with Stena Line's other routes to Liverpool (Birkenhead) and Heysham.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the freight-ferry Stena Hibernia on Belfast to Liverpool (Birkenhead) is now operating to an adjusted sailing schedule. The route is also served by a pair of passenger ro-pax sisters, Stena Lagan and Stena Mersey.

Published in Ferry
9th November 2013

Busier Times for Birkenhead

#Birkenhead – Busier times lay ahead for Birkenhead Twelve Quays Terminal next week when Stena Line introduce a third ship on the route to Belfast while today the Isle of Man Steam Packet resumed a winter service, writes Jehan Ashmore.

As previously reported Stena Line were set to launch the freight-only ferry earlier this week however bad weather and technical difficulties delayed the entry of Stena Hibernia (1996/13,007grt).

The 114-trailer freight-ferry will initially operate eight sailings per week. These extra sailings will depart Birkenhead Tues – Fri (at 0300hrs) and depart Belfast Tues – Fri (at 1500hrs). She will be sharing the double-linkspan berth at Birkenhead with the company's ro-pax sisters.

The Ben-My-Chree of the Isle of Man Steam Packet operates the weekend-only service from Douglas with a round-trip on Saturday's and this is repeated on Sunday's.The return of the ro-pax to the Mersey replaces fast-craft Manannan sailings between the Manx capital and Liverpool. Facing directly opposite is Birkenhead on the Wirral Peninsula.

Ben-My-Chree continues operating Douglas-Heysham weekday sailings on the route she has served as a reliable workhorse for the last 15 years. The Steam Packet are to charter the freight-ferry Arrow on the Manx-Cumbrian service in response to competition early next year from new operator Ellan Vannin Line.

 

Published in Ferry

#FreightFerry – Stena Line's plan to launch a freight-only ferry on the Belfast-Liverpool (Birkenhead) on Tuesday as previously reported, has been delayed to next week, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Having had technical issues, the 114-trailer capacity Stena Hibernia (1996/13,007grt) also encountered bad weather. She is currently in the English Channel on a repositioning voyage understood to have departed from Brunsbuettel.

The introduction of Stena Hibernia as the routes third ship will see the vessel join passenger ro-pax sisters Stena Lagan and Stena Mersey. The 1996 built freight-ferry will initially run 8 sailings weekly departing Belfast Tues-Fri (at 15.00hrs) and from Birkenhead Tues – Fri (at 0300hrs).

For the ferry aficionado, the use of 'Hibernia' as you may recall is not the first vessel name given to a Stena ship. The last and former Dun Laoghaire-Holyhead conventional car-ferry St. Columba was renamed Stena Hibernia following a major refit in 1991.

Her owners choose to revive one of the traditional 'mail' boat names along with 'Cambria' on the Welsh route as running mate Stena Cambria was relocated from the Dover-Calais route, where she originally served as the St. Anselm.

 

Published in Ferry

#FERRY REFIT – In readiness for annual refit, Stena Line's Dublin-Holyhead two-ship service, is to be relieved shortly by a chartered Finnish ro-pax ferry, Finnarrow (1996/25,996grt) which carried out 'berthing trials' in Dublin Port yesterday, writes Jehan Ashmore.

When the Stena Nordica (2000/24,206grt)  is away in dry-dock, Finnarrow will take her roster in tandem with the route's second ro-pax Stena Advanturer. The relief ferry is owned by Finnlines and she has a 274 passenger capacity, space for 800 cars and can handle 154-freight trailer units.

In order for Finnarrow to perform berthing procedures at the single linkspan used exclusively by Stena Line at Dublin Ferryport (Terminal 2), the Stena Nordica departed the port into the rough sea of Dublin Bay. During this time she circled the Dublin Bay Buoy and throughout the bay, before returning to the berth just vacated by Finnarrow, so to resume her scheduled afternoon sailing to Holyhead.

Finnarrow had earlier this week set sail from the German Baltic Sea port of Travemünde and arrived at the Welsh port on Wednesday lunchtime, where she also undertook berthing trails.

Ironically both Stena Nordica and Finnarrow served together on Stena Line's Karlskrona-Gdyania route several years ago, where the latter vessel was also chartered out on their Harwich-Hook van Holland route.

The Finnarrow, which unusually for a Scandinavian operator, was built in Indonesia, when ordered for original owners Rederi AB Gotland. Under her current role, she is part of the Finnlines (Grimaldi Group) of operations running 14 ro-pax vessels between six countries and eleven ports throughout the Baltic and North Sea.

 

Published in Ferry

#LOGISTIC AWARDS – Stena Line Freight collected the Irish Sea Shipping Line of the Year Award at the Export & Freight Transport & Logistics Awards 2012.

The award was presented to Stena Line's Irish Sea freight commercial manager Frank Nieuwenhuys, at a ceremony held this week at the Ramada Hotel in Belfast.

Among the winners was Carna Transport based in Monaghan, which won in the best European Haulier category while NMC Haulage of Dungannon, Co. Tyrone picked up Haulier of the Year.

Published in Ferry

Ferry & Car Ferry News The ferry industry on the Irish Sea, is just like any other sector of the shipping industry, in that it is made up of a myriad of ship operators, owners, managers, charterers all contributing to providing a network of routes carried out by a variety of ships designed for different albeit similar purposes.

All this ferry activity involves conventional ferry tonnage, 'ro-pax', where the vessel's primary design is to carry more freight capacity rather than passengers. This is in some cases though, is in complete variance to the fast ferry craft where they carry many more passengers and charging a premium.

In reporting the ferry scene, we examine the constantly changing trends of this sector, as rival ferry operators are competing in an intensive environment, battling out for market share following the fallout of the economic crisis. All this has consequences some immediately felt, while at times, the effects can be drawn out over time, leading to the expense of others, through reduced competition or takeover or even face complete removal from the marketplace, as witnessed in recent years.

Arising from these challenging times, there are of course winners and losers, as exemplified in the trend to run high-speed ferry craft only during the peak-season summer months and on shorter distance routes. In addition, where fastcraft had once dominated the ferry scene, during the heady days from the mid-90's onwards, they have been replaced by recent newcomers in the form of the 'fast ferry' and with increased levels of luxury, yet seeming to form as a cost-effective alternative.

Irish Sea Ferry Routes

Irrespective of the type of vessel deployed on Irish Sea routes (between 2-9 hours), it is the ferry companies that keep the wheels of industry moving as freight vehicles literally (roll-on and roll-off) ships coupled with motoring tourists and the humble 'foot' passenger transported 363 days a year.

As such the exclusive freight-only operators provide important trading routes between Ireland and the UK, where the freight haulage customer is 'king' to generating year-round revenue to the ferry operator. However, custom built tonnage entering service in recent years has exceeded the level of capacity of the Irish Sea in certain quarters of the freight market.

A prime example of the necessity for trade in which we consumers often expect daily, though arguably question how it reached our shores, is the delivery of just in time perishable products to fill our supermarket shelves.

A visual manifestation of this is the arrival every morning and evening into our main ports, where a combination of ferries, ro-pax vessels and fast-craft all descend at the same time. In essence this a marine version to our road-based rush hour traffic going in and out along the commuter belts.

Across the Celtic Sea, the ferry scene coverage is also about those overnight direct ferry routes from Ireland connecting the north-western French ports in Brittany and Normandy.

Due to the seasonality of these routes to Europe, the ferry scene may be in the majority running between February to November, however by no means does this lessen operator competition.

Noting there have been plans over the years to run a direct Irish –Iberian ferry service, which would open up existing and develop new freight markets. Should a direct service open, it would bring new opportunities also for holidaymakers, where Spain is the most visited country in the EU visited by Irish holidaymakers ... heading for the sun!

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