Displaying items by tag: Proposed CruiseBerth
#FinalCaller – Five masts, each 221ft towered above Dun Laoghaire Harbour’s Carlisle Pier as US luxury operator, WindStar Cruises motor sail-assisted flagship Wind Surf made the last call of the season, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The 14,000 gross tonnage Wind Surf had made a cruise turn around in the south Dublin Bay harbour. With a 312 capacity, Wind Surf was among eight callers this year bringing around 10,000 tourists and crew to the harbour's hinterland and visitor attractions.
In fact, Wind Surf has been the most frequent visitor since Dun Laoghaire welcomed back cruiseships on a more concerted basis that began in 2011. The cruiseship business is the only commercial shipping sector since Stena Line withdrew their HSS fast-ferry service to Holyhead, Wales in 2014.
WindStars customers arrived at Carlisle Pier to board Wind Surf that departed yesterday evening, it was observed the departure involved a pilot cutter from Dublin Port to guide the vessel into the bay. While at the same time some of her self-furling computer operated sails were unveiled.
The cruise first port of call is an anchorage visit off Dunmore East today on the Waterford estuary. She then heads for Tresco, Scilly Isles, Brest, France, followed by a day at sea in the Bay of Biscay bound for Ferrol and Vigo in Spain, Leixoes in neighbouring Portugal and culminating in the capital, Lisbon. From thereon, Wind Surf returns to her programme of Mediterranean cruising.
According to DLHC a variety of cruise calls from vessels holding 100 to almost 3,000 passengers arrived from the newly refurbished Hebridean Sky to the larger newcomer, TUI Cruises Mein Schiff 1 that anchored offshore aswell as Celebrity Silhouette, which made an appearance last year.
Six out of the 8 cruise ships visiting this summer berthed alongside Carlisle Pier from where passengers had the short stroll to the town centre.
Welcoming visitors to the town were Dun Laoghaire County Council town ambassadors and volunteers from the DLR Volunteer centre that created a great atmosphere.
Carolyn Hanaphy of Dun Laoghaire Harbour today said “We await the planning decision from An Bord Pleanala about our proposed cruise berth, such that we can attract over 100,000 cruise passengers per year.”
The season for 2017 will see half the total of callers, when four calls are scheduled by two cruiseships. Again they will be made by repeat cruise clients, WindStar represented by their Wind Surf and Star Legend.
The planning costs were carried out by DLRCC in the hope of a significant economic payback, but is no longer able to defend that position, a planning inquiry has been told.
Dún Laoghaire TD Richard Boyd Barrett told the An Bord Pleanála inquiry he wanted to question the council’s support for Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company’s application for a 400m cruiser berth and dredging scheme in and outside the harbour.
However, he was told by Rhona Naughton – senior planner with Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council – there was no one present at the inquiry to answer questions on the basis for the contention that the cruise ships would provide an economic uplift.
Mr Boyd Barrett said he was disappointed as county management had proposed the allocation of €1.5 million, telling councillors cruise ships would represent a “substantial economic benefit to the town and the region”. But he said “we have no one from the council willing to back up that assertion”.
Mr Barrett also told by Ms Naughton that moves by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown county councillors to halt the harbour development have no legal standing.
A majority of councillors voted in recent weeks to insert a ban on cruise ships longer than 250m in the draft county development plan, as well as a provision to encourage the development of the harbour as a centre for national and international water sports.
But Ms Naughton said the draft county development plan would not come into force until April 2016. And there was no certainty at this stage that the ban on larger cruise ships would survive the ongoing drafting process.
She said the council support of the planning application was “within the confines” of the county development plan 2010 – 2016 and she could not comment on what might be included in the draft plan when it becomes law.
For much more on the story, click for the newspaper link here.