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Ferries and Ferry News from Ireland
W.B. Yeats on two separate occasions berthed within Alexandra Basin (above), where 'Brexit-Buster' sisters Delphine and Celine call routinely in between operating CLnD's direct services connecting Dublin and mainland Europe. Last year leadship, Celine was christened in a ceremony in the port with An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar attending the proceedings.
#ferries - It's almost a month ago when W.B. Yeats made a delivery voyage to Dublin Port, since then the Irish Ferries new cruiseferry has until recently included occupying a quayside where the 'Brexit-Busters' routinely berth, writes Jehan Ashmore. The…
Hauliers have grave concerns over a hard Brexit, above truck trailers parked in Holyhead, north Wales.
#ferries - Deep concerns have been expressed by Irish hauliers that a no-deal or hard Brexit will lead to unworkable delays at UK ports. They are already delivering huge quantities of non-perishable goods which are being stockpiled in both Ireland…
Night-time scene of W.B. Yeats while alongside the North Wall Quay Extension (close to East-Link bridge) in Dublin Port.
#ferries - W.B. Yeats maiden sailing as previously reported on Afloat.ie has changed date according to the Irish Ferries freight website, though the rescheduled sailing remains based on a freight-only basis, writes Jehan Ashmore. Orginally, the first sailing was due…
"Brexit-busting" super-ferries sail directly between Dublin and Zeebrugge and Rotterdam, bypassing uncertainty in Britain. AFLOAT adds above is the North Wall Quay Extension (close to the East-Link bridge) where for the most part Irish Ferries new €147m cruiseferry W.B. Yeats has docked within the port since arriving for the first time last month.
#ferries - On top of the roof of Dublin Port Company's headquarters, you can see lots of building work amidst all the docked ships at the River Liffey's mouth. And while that construction is not entirely Brexit-related, management at the…
400,000 lorries use Holyhead port every year - one of the major routes between Ireland and Wales.
#ferries - Parking sites in Anglesey, north Wales, could be turned into places for lorries to use in the event of a no-deal Brexit. The contingency plan, led by the Welsh Government, reports BBC News, has been drawn up in…
One of the Stena vessels in dry dock at H&W Belfast, which AFLOAT adds is Stena Lagan, the first of a pair that operates Belfast-Birkenhead (Liverpool) is docked for works. During the refit programme, Stena Horizon from the Rosslare-Cherbourg route is covering in for the dry-dockings. In turn Stena Nordica operates the French route in addition freight-only Stena Forerunner (of Liverpool route) last weekend provided a boost in capacity given Irish Ferries reduced sailing frequency of recent months based out of Dublin. Also above behind the gangway is Stena Forerunner, which Afloat last year covered in its deployment from North Sea service.
#ferries - Work has begun on ferries from Stena Line which involves a £5 million refit programme of its local fleet at Belfast's Harland & Wolff shipyard. The 10-week upgrade schedule reports the Irish News, will see five Stena vessels…
2,800 lane metres of freight (165 vehicles) will first be made available to freight hauliers when W.B. Yeats (biggest ferry in tonnage terms on the Irish Sea) finally enters service on the Dublin-Holyhead route this Sunday, January 13th. As for the maiden crossing accommodating passengers and motorists this is scheduled to take place later this month, on January 25th.
#ferries - Irish Ferries new cruiseferry W.B. Yeats is finally to enter service by making a maiden commercial sailing on the Dublin-Holyhead route this Sunday, albeit the giant ship will only take freight vehicles and drivers, writes Jehan Ashmore. According…
89 trucks took part on Tuesday, in a no-deal Brexit test to see what delays there would be if there were checks at the Port of Dover above, where AFLOAT adds are ferries from rival firms, DFDS and P&O.
#ferries - Representives from Irish hauliers the Journal.ie reports, have said that the no-deal Brexit test run at the Port of Dover was too little too late, and wasn’t representative of how bad the tailbacks could be. On Tuesday, the…
Sally Line's Ramsgate to Dunkerque ferry. AFLOAT adds this former operator at the Kent port (near to the UK's largest and busiest ferryport at Dover) was served by ferries among them The Viking (above) which during 1989, Sally chartered to B&I Line and deployed on the Dublin-Holyhead route. The state operated line was in 1992 acquired by ICG, parent company of Irish Ferries which is to introduce newbuild W.B. Yeats on the core Irish Sea route this month.
#ferries - On the UK south-east coast, the Port of Ramsgate "can not be ready" for extra ferry services in the event of a no-deal Brexit, according to the councillor for the harbour area. Seaborne Freight according to BBC News,…
The new ships include ferries for passengers and vehicles (among those to serve on the Irish Sea is W.B. Yeats as above), as well as the largest catamaran to operate in London. Afloat also adds the Irish Ferries new cruiseferry is seen docked in Dublin Port on 21 December (winter solstice). In the background is Oscar Wilde arriving from Holyhead, Wales, though this ferry had operated Rosslare-based routes to France.
#ferries - Nine new passenger ferries are planned to be launched on Ireland and UK routes which shows the industry is “continuing to thrive”, a trade body has claimed. Irish Ferries, Stena Line and Brittany Ferries the Independent.ie reports are…
Hull registered tanker, Keewhit transferring bunkers to Oscar Wilde which had operated out of Rosslare (above) to France, is currently serving Irish Ferries Dublin-Holyhead route. AFLOAT also adds the route's main cruiseferry, Ulysses is due for an annual dry-docking this month when W.B. Yeats is to make a debut on the Ireland-Wales route.
#ferry - Minister for Transport has been accused of not doing enough to get a replacement for the Irish Ferries service linking Rosslare with Cherbourg. The company according to the Irish Examiner, announced just before Christmas that it was unlikely…
P&O have stopped flying the Red Ensign on two of their cross Channel ferries. AFLOAT adds as previously reported in 2012 it was then P&O's 175th anniversary. Seven years before, the famous global shipping company was divided, following the sale in 2005 of the ferry division to Dubai based DP World for £3.3 billion which operates P&O Ferries. As for cruise operations, they were sold off to Carnival UK, a subsidiary of the US owned Carnival Corporation which includes P&O Cruises and other leading brand names.
#ferry - UK flagged ships are taking down the Red Ensign to fit in with EU financial regulations as they sail through the English Channel. Southampton based P&O, writes the Express, has raised the flag of Cyprus instead of the…
Dredger Freeway which AFLOAT reported on Monday, took a lay-over period during the festive period in Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The dredger departed yesterday to resume duties in Dublin Bay (above) where also seen last month (Dec.20) the Cypriot flagged W.B. Yeats made a maiden arrival to the capital.
#ferry - In Wexford, an independent local councillor claims that there is “a lot of smoke and mirrors” around the decision by Irish Ferries to halt its service from Rosslare. As Breaking News reports, Cllr Ger Carthy says that the…
UK to spend more than £100m chartering extra ferries to ease congestion at Dover. Ireland is in danger of becoming over reliant on Dublin Port (where W.B. Yeats above approaches) while reducing the potential of the port (Rosslare) closest to the EU, Labour party leader Brendan Howlin has said.
#FerryNews - The Irish Times writes the Government needs to “immediately move” to bolster and diversify transport links to the European Union, the Labour Party has said. Labour party leader Brendan Howlin said the Government is “standing idly by” while…
DFDS is one of the companies to sign a contract with the UK Government in the event of a No-Deal Brexit. The ro-ro freight ferries will operate from ports such as Felixstowe in Suffolk where AFLOAT spotted in the summer, a DFDS North Sea serving Gardenia Seaways (262 trailers / 4,076m load space). The 210m vessel that operated on the Vlaardingen, Netherlands route, was launched last year was built by FGS, the same German yard that constructed Irish Ferries cruiseferry W.B. Yeats. The cruiseferry last week arrived to Dublin Port following a delivery voyage that involved the North Sea.
#FerryNews - The British government has spent more than £100 million on ferries to ease potential problems in the event of a no-deal Brexit. The Department for Transport (DfT) reports RTE News, has signed contracts with French firm Brittany Ferries,…
Winter Solstice: Bright lights big city... big ship... as W.B. Yeats is illuminated in the night sky having shifted berths within Dublin Port (yesterday) and following the cruiseferry's maiden delivery voyage from Germany, via calls to France, Ireland (Rosslare Europort) and Wales in that order. The 194m newbuild remains docked next to the Tom Clarke (East-Link) Toll-Lift Bridge that spans the Liffey.
#FerryNews - According to the Irish Ferries website, online bookings for W.B. Yeats, indicate that the brand new €144m luxury cruiseferry is to enter service a month after Christmas Day, but firstly on the Dublin-Holyhead route, writes Jehan Ashmore. Afloat…

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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