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Winds of Change Await Final ‘W’ Class Arklow Bulker In Service

27th January 2017

#FinalWbulker - Arklow Castle (5,054dwt) this month became the third ‘C’ class cargoship launched, the same number had been built for older ‘W’ class bulkers, in which only one remains in service, writes Jehan Ashmore.

This third and final sister is the Irish-flagged Arklow Wind which is currently berthed at Montoir-de-Bretagne on the Loire Estuary. The 13,988dwt bulker having made a passage to France across the Bay of Biscay from Gijon in northern Spain.  

A sister, Arklow Wave dating a year earlier to 2003 has been sold by Arklow Shipping Ltd to landlocked owners in Switzerland. According to Ships Monthly, the 13,977dwt Arklow Wave has been acquired by Nova Marine Carriers SA, of Switzerland. The 136m ship has been renamed NACC Toronto.

The final sister of the trio, Arklow Willow was sold last year to overseas owners not in Europe, but in fact to north America interests. Canadian company, McNeil Marine Ltd of Hamilton based in Ontario purchased the bulker. They renamed her Florence Spirit. She along with her sisters were built for ASL in Japan by the Kyokuyo Shipyard Corporation. 

There has been an impressive surge in newbuild orders, even by ASL standards. The shipping company which celebrated its 60th anniverasary last year, has in recent years placed orders for the ‘C’ class as referred above but also for ‘B’ as well as ‘V’ class cargoships. Of these newbuilds, only the C class fly the tricolour, the rest of these new ship series are Dutch flagged. 

The progressive fleet expansion and in replacing ageing tonnage no doubt suggests Arklow Wind’s days are increasingly numbered.

Published in Ports & Shipping
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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