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#COASTGUARD - Sikorsky has completed production of a new S-92 helicopter for the Irish Coast Guard under the rescue service's €500 million deal with CHC Ireland.

The US-based helicopter firm and CHC formalised the purchase on Wednesday (21 December) with Irish Coast Guard director Chris Reynolds during a hand-over ceremony at the S-92 commercial helicopter assembly facility in Coatesville, Pennsylvania.

Equipped for dedicated search and rescue (SAR) operations, the helicopter will provide coverage for deep Atlantic Ocean missions, service Ireland's offshore islands and provide rescue cover on the west coast from Cork to Galway.

The new aircraft will be based at Shannon and will replace the current coastguard SAR helicopter, a Sikorsky S-61, which has given 20 years of unbroken service.

According to Sikorsky, the S-92 is equipped with advanced systems and hardware, including an automated flight control system that enables the pilot to fly pre-programmed search patterns and perform delicate hover manoeuvres; a wireless intercom allowing a rescue swimmer to communicate with the crew; radio transceivers to communicate with ships and rescue services; a weather radar and infrared sensor; and a digital video system to record rescues.

Reynolds said the new helicopter - which joins four second-hand machines on a 10-year lease - represents a stepped improvement in Ireland's ability to care for and service its seagoing, coastal and island communities.

"I am very happy that the Coast Guard will operate what I consider to be the leading SAR helicopter in the world," he added.

As reported earlier this year on Afloat.ie, the new chopper is part of a deal that raised questions from a Fine Gael TD over allegations that a competing tender did not have a "good reputation".

Fergus O'Dowd questioning the contract with CHC Ireland after receiving documents in which Chris Reynolds said the Air Corps – whose helicopters are supplied by AgustaWestland - were uneqipped for the role and that no cost saving would be made if they took on the service.

Published in Coastguard

#CORKWEEK – Preparations for Cork Week 2012, one of the biggest and most succesful of Ireland's sailing regattas is well underway and this week the Royal Cork Yacht Club has launched a dedicated Cork Week 2012 website.

The event Chairman, Pat Lyons is keen to welcome all participants to the event.

"Once again, Cork Week will strive to keep down costs for all competitors, right across the board, we realise the importance of this in the current climate. However, we will make sure that the event is a memorable occasion. Next year's event will stage the Cork Week Festival, which will be a celebration of Cork's cultural heritage. Cork has a vibrant and artistic community and the festival will showcase that. We want to make Cork Week a unique experience and this will be expressed through performing arts, local cuisine and exhibitions of the history of the region. You will find bouncy castles and face painting at many events but Cork Week will provide far more than that."

Early expressions of interest have been very promising; a substantial big boat fleet is expected, including several that had a thrilling regatta in 2010. Many of the entries for the 2012 Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup are also expected, including some of the best overseas yachts from Europe and further afield, including a strong team from Hong Kong.

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Storm - a J109 favourite for Cork Week 2012 - Photo: Bob Bateman

The J/109 Irish National Championship will take place during Cork Week with 20 or more yachts expected from Ireland and overseas. Favourites for the national title include Pat Kelly's Storm, Irish IRC Boat of the Year and Glenn Cahill's Joie de Vivre. Paul Heys of J Boats also reports that the new J/111 class will also be well represented with at least six of the new breed debuting in their first major European Regatta.

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Crosshaven, the venue, as always, for Cork Week 2012 - Photo: Bob Bateman

For the smaller IRC boats, the fleet is set to be just as competitive, the variety of sailing conditions and courses is a great all round test of the yacht and the crew and the yachts in IRC Two and Three make up a substantial percentage of the sailors racing at Cork Week. The committee hopes that the reduction in costs right across the board should be of great benefit to those boats in particular.

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Visitors berthed in Crosshaven for the 2011 event. Photo: Bob Bateman

The 1720 Class has been having a renaissance in Ireland and a large fleet of the exciting yachts is expected. Purpose built for the Cork Week courses, there are 26 1720s in Cork alone and others are expected from abroad. Charter opportunities are available.

1720s

1720s comepting at this year's European Championships in Baltimore

It has also been decided to allow professional sailors to race at Cork Week in any of the classes, as Racing Chairman, Anthony O'Leary explains.

"We don't want to prevent anybody from coming to Cork Week and we have decided to take away any of the barriers to people who want to come and enjoy some wonderful racing. Competitors can expect a variety of courses set in open water, coastal and in the harbour, which should test the crew handling and get just about every sail out of the bag. We are blessed with some superb sailing grounds and we are intent on making full use of them. The focus for Cork Week is the same as it has always been, great sailing and a fabulous atmosphere ashore."

The management team is also keen to encourage participation by charter companies and corporate entries and plans are in place to offer assistance to ensure that Cork Week is a fun-filled regatta for all.

Published in Cork Week

#SHIPPING – The Irish Exporters Association launched its Trade and Transport Analysis 2011 today (13th Dec) in Cork and its findings confirmed that 2010 was a story of recovery after two straight years of decline in 2008 and 2009. Importantly, the recovery trend has not continued into 2011, and exporters fear that shipping lines may not be able to continue the service levels they need to meet new market requirements.

Speaking at the launch of the Trade and Transport Analysis 2011 at the Port of Cork, Mr John Whelan, Chief Executive at the Irish Exporters Association, said that the analysis shows;

•             export volumes have now returned to the  pre –recession levels

•             but import volumes are still 12.9% below 2007 levels. The analysis further shows that airfreight imports are down by 36% indicating a dramatic loss in high value luxury imports, whereas sea-freight imports are down by over 9%, reflecting the depressed domestic economy.

Mr Brendan Keating, Chief Executive Officer at the Port of Cork, welcoming exporters to the launch event stated; ''A 9% increase in exports are expected through the Port of Cork during 2011, which is very positive for the region.''

He went on to say the Port of Cork is committed to supporting the growth of international trade  and meeting the needs of exporters and importers of goods , particularly from the distant but rapidly growing Asian and South American markets . He also pointed to the Ports commitment by sponsoring the Deep Sea Shipping Award with the Irish Exporters Association. He concluded by saying; "The Port of Cork is happy to be associated with the Irish Exporters Association in producing the Trade and Transport Analysis 2011."

"The growth in exports volumes to pre –recession levels reflects the rapid' V ' shaped bounce back by the export sector  which was achieved despite the  depressed  international economic environment," said Mr Whelan.  However, he went on to say, the continued low volume of imports is inevitably putting huge strain on the shipping lines and airfreight lines servicing the country. "Exporters are concerned that the continued loss of volumes will lead to a deterioration of competitive services from shipping lines and haulage contractors, less revenue for ports and ultimately higher transport costs for our manufacturing export sector."

He further stated; "Major job losses in  manufacturing industry  will accelerate  unless a new integrated  transport strategy  is put in place to enable Irish exporters to effectively transport  key  imports from the major Asian supply industries into Ireland and manufacture and distribute  exports  into  Europe and America as well as back to Asia."

John Whelan then said; "In this context exporters find it befalling that  in the recent Budget that added costs were put onto the transport sector  without making allowances for the export sector . Once again we are asking the Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar T.D. to introduce a Special Diesel User Rebate to support transport and export industry to ensure we have a level playing field in Europe with competitors from other EU member states who enjoy this kind of support from their governments."

The publication launched today, sponsored by the Port of Cork, looks in detail at all of the various modes of transport that are currently used to export and to import.  The publication also looks at the risk factors to Irish trade which need to be addressed as a matter of urgency.  High up on that list is the lack of regular air freight routes into and out of Ireland which accounts for  37% by value of all exports or almost €33 billion were carried by air in 2010.  However, this may not be the full picture because the CSO figures only indicate the mode of transport used to move the goods across the border of the Irish state and does not take into account which mode of transport is used after that point.  It therefore seems likely that the figures for air freight quoted above may in fact not reflect the total potential airfreight value as it is likely that a proportion of air freight is leaving Ireland by other modes in order to be air freighted from hubs in the UK or continental Europe to their final destination.

Mr Whelan concluded by saying that Ireland must continue to reinforce its existing strengths as one of the most open and globalized economies in the world (currently ranked Number Two on the Ernst & Young Globalization Index). "We must build on our progress so far by effectively resolving our transport challenges in an imaginative way and with a strong sense of urgency and determination."

Published in Ports & Shipping
Tagged under

#TOURISM - Winter might be upon us, but it's a great time to plan a new year holiday in Ireland on the sea, according to the UK's Daily Echo.

From night-time paddling in with renowned kayaking instructor Jim Kennedy, to snorkelling in Baltimore, relaxing in Skibbereen and and fresh seafood lunches in Kinsale, a vacation in Cork can appeal to any taste.

Whale and dolphin watching is a big draw for the region, too, as Ireland's coast – the first cetacean sanctuary in Europe - plays host to a growing variety of species.

The summer feeding grounds off the southern coast are particularly busy, and tourist boats are often treated to whales breaching the surface and surrounded by dolphins putting on a show.

The Daily Echo has more on the story HERE.

Published in Aquatic Tourism

#POWER FROM THE SEA - A €9 million Europe-wide wave energy trial programme is one of the key elements of a new Government programme designed to transform Ireland as a maritime nation.

According to The Irish Times, University College Cork's Hydraulics and Maritime Research Centre will run testing of wave energy, tidal energy and offshore wind energy devices across a network of sites in 12 European countries participating in the new marine renewables infrastructure network Marinet.

Irish test sites in the network include the national ocean test facility in Cork and centres operated by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) at Galway Bay and Belmullet.

The UCC centre also forms part of the new Irish Maritime and Energy Resource Cluster (IMERC), launched last Friday by Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

The cluster comprises UCC, the Irish Naval Service, Cork Institute of Technology and the National Maritime College of Ireland with the initial aim of creating 70 new research jobs by 2014 in the areas of wave energy, green shipping and sustainability of ocean resources.

IMERC director Dr Val Cummins said: “The aim of IMERC is to promote Ireland as a world-renowned research and development location that will unlock Ireland’s maritime and energy potential."

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Power From the Sea

#Wine–Royal Cork Yacht Club has taken delivery of its own "Royal Cork Private Reserve" wine. It's described as 'a fine quality Bordeaux red wine with an exclusive "Royal Cork" label'. To celebrate its launch, diners at tomorrow's Goose dinner will receive a complimentary glass with their meal. Members can buy gift boxed bottles of the new wine from next week.

royalcorkwine

The new Royal Cork wine label

Published in Royal Cork YC

#NEWS UPDATE - The search was set to resume this morning for a missing man feared drowned in Cork city, the Irish Examiner reports.

Search efforts were mounted last night after the man's family notified gardaí. The man, believed to be in his 60s, is thought to have disappeared from Ballincollig Regional Park in the west of the city, where his car and phone were found.

Waterford's Irish Coast Guard helicopter joined the search along with gardaí and the Crosshaven coastguard, concentrating on the River Lee where water levels were high due to heavy rain.

Published in News Update
#CRUISE LINER–Up to 900 delegates from the fuel industry in Brazil are being rewarded for their business with a high end incentive trip in 2012 which will include a visit to Cork. They will travel on the cruise liner MV Independence of the Seas which will berth at Cobh Cruise Terminal overnight. The group, which is being co-ordinated by Kuoni Destination Management Company will experience Cork over a day and a half. This is a fantastic opportunity to highlight the region of Cork, voted one of the top ten European destinations to visit in 2011 by Yahoo Search Engine.

Cork Convention Bureau (CCB) has been working with Kuoni on an impressive itinerary for next year. A group of 12 visited Cork on September 17th and 18th last on a fact finding mission. CCB ensured they experienced the best of the region including a visit to the coastal town of Kinsale, the Queenstown Heritage Centre in Cobh, Fota House and even a night at the dog races! As a result of this site inspection a programme has been devised. A gala dinner in the grounds of Castlemartyr Resort Hotel with the backdrop of the castle ruins has been proposed followed by a day of excursions including the Jameson Distillery in the town of Midleton and the obligatory kissing of the Blarney Stone. Two hours of free time in Cork's city centre will allow the group to browse the chic boutiques and have lunch at many of Cork's great restaurants tasting local artisan produce.

'This business will be worth an estimated €500,000 to the Cork region. Since its inception in 2007, CCB has been responsible for more than €20 million worth of conference, meeting and incentive business in Cork. Cork is at its peak right now and international event organisers looking for new destinations are very impressed with the product offering.' Evelyn O'Sullivan, Business Tourism Manager CCB. (Cork Convention Bureau is an initiative of Cork City and County Councils, Failte Ireland and is also supported by the regions hotels.)

Commenting on the delegate visit to Cork, Captain Michael McCarthy Port of Cork said: "This is a fantastic opportunity for Cork to leave a very positive welcoming experience for the 900 visitors. It is very encouraging to see commercial companies using the cruise liner business as a method of visiting the region. Statistics available from the cruise lines indicate that 30% of cruise passengers make a return visit to a region they visited on their cruise itinerary. This would be excellent for Cork if some or all of these delegates return in the future with their family or friends or indeed looked at future business opportunities." In order to ensure that their visit is memorable, the Port of Cork will coordinate a special welcome with the Tour Operator, Cobh Tourism, Town Council and Chamber, Irish Rail and Cork City TEAM.

He continued: "The Port of Cork has been involved for the last 3 years with Spanish, French and Portuguese Ports in developing the European Atlantic Area as a premier cruise destination. This work under an EU Initiative "Cruise Atlantic Europe" is aimed at developing the historic links between these countries and the Latin nations in South America, particularly Brazil to encourage them to visit this region. The Independence of the Seas is due to berth in the Port of Cork between the 6th-7th May 2012 with over 5,000 passengers and crew.

Published in Cruise Liners
#CORKHARBOUR–An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny T.D. and Minister Simon Coveney T.D. today helped start construction on Arkady Feed Ltd.'s  110,000 square foot bulk feed store at the Port of Cork's Deep-water berth in Ringaskiddy, Co. Cork.

Arkady Feed Ltd is a leading player in the importation and trading of feedstuffs for the animal feed sector in Ireland. The animal feed sector is a vital link in Ireland's €8bn agri-food sector. The construction of this new store by Arkady Feed Ltd is a vote of confidence in the animal feed and agri-food sectors by the company. BAM contractors have been awarded the contract to build the facility on behalf of Arkady Feed Ltd.

Minister Simon Coveney today said: "I wish Arkady Feed Ltd every success for their new bulk feed store here in Ringaskiddy, Co. Cork. The dry bulks sector is up 9% for the first 9 months of 2011, according to figures recently published by the IMDO, which shows that this sector is likely to see further growth in the future."

Gary McGuigan, a Director of Arkady Feed Ltd said: "This very important strategic investment in our own storage facility in the Port of Cork, will allow us to grow our business here in Ireland and be a stronger partner with our customers as they too grow over the coming years. While our industry is facing a number of serious issues that will hamper growth in the short term we feel very strongly that our industry is well placed for growth in the medium to long term."

Brendan Keating, CEO of Port of Cork Company said: "The Port of Cork Company is delighted that Arkady Feed Ltd has chosen Ringaskiddy as the location for this significant investment. We are confident that with our unique deep-water port facilities in Ringaskiddy we can help and support Arkady as they expand their business. In offering our full support we commit to working with Arkady Feed Ltd in the achievement of growth."

Published in Port of Cork
Tagged under

#CORKSAILING – Cove Sailing Club's annual prizegiving hosted by Commodore Derry Allister was held with a certain vibrancy at the weekend. Members are buoyed up with the news that its new Junior section at Whitepoint has recruited 152 members, a great boost to sailing in Cork Harbour. The Cobh club is pressing ahead too on its own marina plans, another big area of progress for marine leisure berthing in the harbour.

Earlier this year Cove Sailing Club was granted full planning permission for a 74 berth marina (including visitor berths) at Whitepoint. The proposal being developed is that Cove Sailing Club shall develop and manage the marina in order to provide facilities for use by club members and visitors to Cove.

This year's laying up supper was held at the Commodore Hotel in the seaside town. Members met in the downstairs bar before heading for the Jack Doyle room for lay-up dinner and prizegiving.

There were plenty of annual prize winners from the season of club events (SEE PHOTOS BELOW). Sailing Correspondent and Photographer Claire and Bob Bateman of this Parish received special mention for their work in promoting sailing in the harbour.

bobandclairebateman

Cove Sailing Club Commodore Derry Allister (left) presents Sailing Journalist's Claire and Bob Bateman with the Foley Rose Bowl

The Bateman's were presented with the Foley Rose Bowl trophy. The trophy was first presented to Cove Sailing Club in 1974 when the late Bryan Foley was Chairman of the Cork Harbour Commissioners. It has many illustrious names on it and is awarded on merit, to the class, club, boat, person or group who have in the opinion of Cove Sailing Club contributed significantly to the promotion of sailing in Cork Harbour.

_MG_8105

Boat of the year No Half Measures - Finbarr Dorgan (with trophy) and with Derry Allister crew (L-R)Kieran and Gareth Dorgan, Hal Courtney andRichard Marshall. They also won the overall Friday Night League for Kites IRC division.

Damian Aherne Re Eile

Damian Aherne, skipper of Re Eile being presented with the September league IRC trophy for class 3. Derry and Brendan Ryan (Sailing Secretary) in
background

_MG_8084

Ann Aherne being presented with the September League Echo trophy for class 3

_MG_8089

John Doyle, Chanteuse presented with the Friday Night League Whitesail trophy

Dave Marshall

Dave Marshall and Rob Scandrett receiving the Ballinacurra Cup

_MG_8101

Club Person of the year Brendan Ryan (Sailing Secretary)

 

Published in Cork Harbour
Page 14 of 25

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