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Displaying items by tag: IOM Steam Packet Co

#ArrowHead – Seatruck Ferries have the 65-trailer Arrow covering in on the Dublin-Liverpool route until the vessel is to be withdrawn tomorrow, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Arrow will complete her duties for Seatruck when she sails from Dublin Port tomorrow morning bound for Liverpool from where she had been in lay-over mode since mid-December. In the previous month, a sister the R-class 1,057 freight lane metre, Clipper Ranger was introduced on the route as the third ship following customer demand for additional mid-week unaccompanied trailer sailings.

Currently Clipper Ranger is in drydock at Cammell Laird, Birkenhead and is scheduled to be back in service on the central Irish Sea route next week. Also serving the route are the 150-trailer FSG class sisters Seatruck Power and Seatruck Progress each with a 2,166 freight lane metre capacity.

The Arrow during its stint this month for Seatruck was chartered back from the Isle of Man Steam Packet which almost two years had begun a long-term charter. The Steam-Packet have Arrow to give added flexibility to cover scheduled maintenance periods and if required enhanced level of backup supporting ropax Ben-My-Chree.

Their fastferry, Manannan is also berthed at the Birkenhead drydock facility in preparation to resume seasonal duties in the Spring.

Last month Arrow returned to Merseyside having provided back-up for conventional tonnage of Channel Islands operator Condor Ferries over the festive season.

Likewise of the Steam-Packet they have a fast-ferry, but differ in that they have two such craft serving Guernsey and Jersey.

Published in Ferry

#DouglasLinkspan - Work is to be carried out on a major refurbishment of the Manx government-owned linkspan in Douglas Harbour, reports IOM Today.

The Department of Infrastructure says that the large hydraulic cylinders that operate the structure have been in place for almost 16 years and are nearing the end of their operational life.

Subject to favourable weather and tidal conditions, a new cylinder will be fitted before the end of January.

The unit that is removed will then be reconditioned by the manufacturers and reinstalled in place of the second original cylinder later this year. The initial phase of the scheme is expected to take up to four days.

While this work takes place the Ben my Chree will use the Isle of Man Steam Packet linkspan. For more details click here.

Afloat adds that the ropax ferry serves the island's main route to the Port of Heysham. An obstruction at the entrance to the Lancashire port was cleared last week. 

Published in Ferry

#FastFerryLayover - The fast craft ferry, Manannan will have a winter layover period in Manx waters until at least the end of the year, according to operators the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company.

The InCat built 96m craft concludes her 2015 season on 8th November and is not due to resume sailings until 17th March 2016. Normally, Manannan moors on the Mersey during the winter, however this year she will stay in Douglas.

Ben-my-Chree, the main conventional (ro-pax) ferry will operate services throughout the winter, including regular sailings to Heysham and weekend services to Birkenhead.

Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward explained: ‘Ben-my-Chree is a hard-working and reliable vessel which will continue to maintain the Isle of Man’s vital lifeline throughout the winter months.

‘However, we are constantly looking at ways we might improve our service and respond to unforeseen circumstances. This winter we will keep Manannan in Douglas to assess how this may help reduce the time it takes to resume passenger services should Ben-my-Chree be subject to any damage or mechanical issues. In addition, Arrow will be available to ensure freight transport is continued.

‘Having both Manannan and Arrow on stand-by until after the busy Christmas period will provide an extra degree of support for our vital sea links at this important time of the year.’

Manannan will sail over to Merseyside early in the New Year for routine maintenance before returning to the Isle of Man ready for the 2016 season to get under way in March.

Published in Ferry

#DredgingHeysham – The Port of Heysham have assured the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company that tidal and silting issues at the Irish Sea port which has led to several sailings being rescheduled this week, will soon be resolved.

The Lancashire port owned by Peel Ports Group is responsible for maintaining approach channels for all customers (among them Seatruck Ferries), has conducted several weeks of dredging. This has involved the hopper-dredger Albatross to restore the minimum low tide water depth required to access berths.

The port which handles around 30,000 shipping movements annually along its approaches have historically suffered from silting issues. This has required periodic dredging to maintain the minimum depths of water required at low tide for the safe passage of vessels.

Regular soundings are also carried out by the port's owners to check water depths.

Winter storms can sometimes exacerbate the issue as sandbanks shift and local weather conditions can occasionally affect the actual level of low tides compared with predictions.

During the past week, some very low tides coupled with a build-up of silt have led to some Ben-my-Chree services between Douglas and Heysham being rescheduled.

Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: 'During most of the year Ben-my-Chree and other vessels can use their standard berth "slots" but, at certain low tide periods, there needs to be a minor timing variation if the water depth is insufficient. Each year the Steam Packet Company and other port customers liaise with Heysham Port on timetables to ensure that changes to "standard" schedules are minimal and pre-planned.

'However, this past winter the port has not been able to maintain the minimum depth of water originally planned and, despite dredging of the approaches and port having been under way for some weeks and soundings constantly being updated, this has resulted in some late schedule changes to accommodate the current situation.'

He added: 'Peel Ports has assured the Company that its dredging will all be completed prior to the busy TT period.'

Published in Ferry

#CruiseRescheduled – A Round-the-Island cruise of the Isle of Man planned for today has been rescheduled to the end of April.

Despite the clocks changing to mark summertime, the unfavourable weather conditions have led to the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company to instead set a new date for the cruise which is on Sunday, April 26th, departing Douglas at 11:30.

All passengers booked on the excursion will be automatically transferred and new tickets will be sent out. Full refunds will be given to those who cannot make the new date.

Commenting on the rescheduling, the company's Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: 'There are some choppy conditions forecast for this weekend, and potentially poor visibility during parts of the cruise, which may restrict views".

"While all of our other services are expected to run as scheduled this weekend, we felt that the forecast wouldn't make for an enjoyable round-the-Island experience for passengers and have therefore rescheduled to allow the trip to be completed in more favourable weather conditions."

All bookings will be automatically transferred or refunds are available on request. Tickets for the new date, cost £24 for adults and £12 for children (15 and under).

To make a booking, visit the Ferry Travel Shop, Sea Terminal, Douglas or call Reservations Team on 661661.

Published in Ferry

#ManxCruise – Manannan, the Isle of Man Steam Packet's fast-ferry catamaran is this year taking the honour of making the annual Round Island Cruise instead of ro-pax, Ben-My-Chree, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The cruise around the scenic island will be a 'Lap' as this is scheduled to take only around two hours. The 96m Incat craft departs from the Manx capital, Douglas on 29 March, with a morning departure of 11.00am.

Normally, the Steam-Packet organise two island cruises provided by each vessel for those wishing to see the spectacular coast seen from a sea based perspective. This time, Manannan will be taking the cruise. This leaves Ben-My-Chree to maintain routine duties on the main year round Douglas-Heysham route. 

As for the Manannan's routine duties, they are scheduled to take place just days before the cruise when the 820 passenger /200-car craft resumes a summer-season Douglas-Liverpool link on 26 March.

Crossings on this England-Isle of Man route by the 43-knot craft are timed to takes 2 hour 40 minutes. In addition, Manannan will be deployed on the seasonal Douglas routes to Belfast and Dublin.

In advance of the season, Manannan starts off with Easter sailings, when tasked to carry out a round trip Douglas-Dublin sailings on 1 April before the bank holiday and afterwards.

Two days later, Manannan will make a round trip on the Douglas-Belfast with sailings on 3 April closer to the Easter period. Likewise a return leg will be made after the holiday period.

Published in Ferry

#ManxWinterSchedule – Isle of Man Steam Packet's winter season sailing schedule started earlier this month.

The winter schedule sees ro-pax Ben-my-Chree operate two Heysham services daily from Monday to Friday, with Saturdays and Sundays involving one Heysham and one Liverpool (Birkenhead) sailing on each day, as she has done in recent years.

Ben-my-Chree will operate throughout the winter on this schedule, and she also has two return services to Dublin planned for Christmas, sailing to the Irish capital on the evenings of December 20th and December 27th, returning to Douglas overnight in both instances.

The fast-craft ferry Manannan will return to service on Thursday, March 26th for the 2015 summer season.

Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: 'Following the technical difficulties suffered by Manannan this summer, the repairs were completed in late September and she has been performing well since then.

'Despite having to reschedule sailings, 2014 has been a successful year in terms of passenger numbers and having opened our 2015 bookings on October 1st, early figures are very encouraging, suggesting we are on course for another successful year for passenger numbers.'

While she is in dry dock during the winter, Manannan will undergo her regular annual maintenance and overhaul.

As for the Ben-My-Chree, her next statutory dry-docking for her biennial overhaul is not due until April 2016.

 

Published in Ferry

#TT2015sailings – A boost to sailing capacity driven by demand for TT2015 will see Isle of Man Steam Packet Company charter P&O Ferries fast-ferry Express to assist in the annual splurge of traffic heading to the prestigious annual motorcycle races.

The charter will allow the Steam Packet Company to revise its schedule and increase the number of sailings. An extra four return sailings have been added to the schedule from Larne while their Manannan, also a fast-ferry will operate an additional five Liverpool returns during the TT.

Bookings for the additional sailings open at 8.30am on Monday, November 3rd, and demand is expected to be high.

The Steam Packet Company had already increased capacity for motorcycles to travel to the Island for the annual road racing festival with the announcement earlier this year that a specially-built mezzanine deck will be in place on the Manannan during the TT.

Chartered freight ro-ro vessel MV Arrow as previously reported, will also once again be in service during the TT, freeing up the ro-pax ferry Ben-my-Chree to accommodate additional vehicles.

Steam Packet Company CEO Mark Woodward said: 'We are constantly looking at ways we can help the TT grow as an event by working. Around the clock during the event and ensuring we do everything possible to meet as much demand as we can.

'There was a marked increase in demand when bookings for the 2015 TT opened in May, with first day bookings up 41% on the previous year and many sailings for the period virtually sold out within just days.

He added 'One of the biggest areas of demand is from people wanting to bring their motorcycles, and we have responded to that by making a substantial investment in a mezzanine deck which will increase motorcycle capacity on Manannan by 30%.

 

 

Published in Ferry

#ManxWinterSchedule – The Isle of Man Steam Packet Co.'s fast-ferry Manannan will take the final sailing of the 2014 summer season on her Liverpool service on Sunday, 2 November. The sailing next month marks the start of the Manx operator's winter schedule.

The winter schedule will see ro-pax ferry Ben-my-Chree operate two Heysham services per day from Monday to Friday, with Saturdays and Sundays seeing her carry out one Heysham and one Liverpool (Birkenhead) sailing on each day, as she has done in recent years.

Ben-my-Chree will operate throughout the winter on this schedule, and she also has two return services to Dublin planned for Christmas, sailing to the Irish capital on the evenings of 20 December and 27 December, returning to Douglas overnight in both instances.

Manannan will return to service on Thursday, 26 March for the 2015 summer season.

Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: 'Following the technical difficulties suffered by Manannan this summer, the repairs were completed in late September and she has been performing well since then.

'Despite having to reschedule sailings, 2014 has been a successful year in terms of passenger numbers and having opened our 2015 bookings on 1 October, early figures are very encouraging, suggesting we are on course for another successful year for passenger numbers.'

While she is in dry dock during the winter, Manannan will undergo her regular annual maintenance and overhaul. The Ben's next statutory dry docking for her biennial overhaul is not until April 2016.

Published in Ferry

#TTracesFerryFigures – Following the TT2014 races, the Isle of Man Steam Packet Co. passenger figures showed a significant increase of 7.5% in the number of motorcycles that visited the island, making it the busiest festival since the Centenary TT in 2007.

Statistics from the Steam Packet reveal it will have carried 12,050 motorbikes and 36,800 passengers to the Isle of Man between May 21st and June 6th.

Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: 'This marks yet another year of growth for the TT and the figures are evidence of the TT's continued attraction for motorcycling race fans. The main statistic to consider is the number of bikes carried, which are up by 7.5% on last year, as passenger figures include all inbound numbers, including residents returning home.'

Ahead of the famous race held over a fortnight, the ferry operator's main vessel, ro-pax Ben-My-Chree on the Douglas-Heysham route was fresh in service from following a £1.6m refurbishment. Fast-craft, Manannan was also kept busy on the Liverpool route and for the first time during the annually held event, ro-ro freighter Arrow provided additional capacity in tandem with Ben-My-Chree on the principle route to Heysham.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, early demand for TT2015 travel is already substantially higher than at this time last year. When bookings for next year opened on May 26th, the number of bookings made in the first 10 hours – 2,500 – was up 41% on last year.

This morning Manannan made round trip sailings from the Manx capital to Dublin Port and this will be repeated with crossings on the seasonal-only operated route next Tuesday.

Published in Ferry
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About boot Düsseldorf: With almost 250,000 visitors, boot Düsseldorf is the world's largest boat and water sports fair and every year in January the “meeting place" for the entire industry. From 18 to 26 January 2020, around 2,000 exhibitors will be presenting their interesting new products, attractive further developments and maritime equipment. This means that the complete market will be on site in Düsseldorf and will be inviting visitors on nine days of the fair to an exciting journey through the entire world of water sports in 17 exhibition halls covering 220,000 square meters. With a focus on boats and yachts, engines and engine technology, equipment and accessories, services, canoes, kayaks, kitesurfing, rowing, diving, surfing, wakeboarding, windsurfing, SUP, fishing, maritime art, marinas, water sports facilities as well as beach resorts and charter, there is something for every water sports enthusiast.

At A Glance – Boot Dusseldorf 

Organiser
Messe Düsseldorf GmbH
Messeplatz
40474 Düsseldorf
Tel: +49 211 4560-01
Fax: +49 211 4560-668
Web: https://www.boot.com/

The first boats and yachts will once again be arriving in December via the Rhine.

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