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Displaying items by tag: Dublin Port

#SaveHistoricDocks - A Dublin docklands business group and waterways enthusiasts have called on Minister for Heritage Heather Humphreys to save a key piece of the Grand Canal basin’s Georgian architecture.

As The Irish Times writes The Inland Waterways Association of Ireland (IWAI) and the Docklands Business Forum (see related story) have initiated a petition this week which asks Ms Humphreys to ensure the basin’s lock gates and graving docks for ships are “restored, preserved and reused” for community gain.

The two groups believes Waterways Ireland wants to sell the graving docks site for further high rise development on the Liffey mouth.

The cross-Border agency is primarily responsible for the Grand Canal Basin and for the surrounding area where the three graving docks were constructed for vessel repair, while Nama also has a lease interest.

The graving docks and lock gates are as important to the heritage of the area as Battery Park is to New York, according to Docklands Business Forum’s chief executive Alan Robinson.

For more on this development click here.

Jehan Ashmore of Afloat adds that recently in an 'Aran Islands Snapshot' was featured the former ferry, Naomh Eanna which has been berthed in Grand Canal Dock for more than a quarter century.

The basin itself is considerably older having opened in 1796 for use of ships entering three docks to and from the River Liffey.

Only in recent years due to the threat of scrapping by Waterways Ireland that the historic Irish built ship was saved by campaigners. Among the reasons cited was due to possible sinking of the veteran vessel which led to the ship shifted from Charlotte Quay to a nearby disused graving dock dating to 1850's. 

There have been plans by maritime heritge enthusiasts to restore the 1958 Liffey Dockyard built Naomh Eanna that ran for CIE between Galway City and Aran Islands. The project involved relocating to her former homeport in the mid-west city as a floating museum amongst other functions. The proposed visitor attraction was welcomed by Galway Port with a dedicated berth.  

Grand Canal Basin was last used by commercial shipping until the 1960's. The three graving docks (the largest infilled) were used for repairs of small ships and canal barges.

Published in Dublin Port

#HMSillustrious - The Royal Navy’s former and final ‘Invincible’ aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious which made a rare call to Dublin in recent years departed UK waters for the last time yesterday bound for a Turkish shipbreakers yard, writes Jehan Ashmore.

HMS Illustrious was launched in 1978 but commissioning of the aircraft carrier notably took place after the Falklands War or 'conflict' with Argentina as it was also known. The carrier became  synonymous given the vital role of the RAF Harrier Jump-Jet aircraft. In more recent years the aircraft-carrier was scaled down to that of only carrying helicopters.

The third of the ‘Invincible’ class carrier sailed from the UK premier naval base of Portsmouth bound for Falklands in the South Atlantic. Likewise a departure from the Hampshire port was repeated for the final time yesterday albeit under tow on a delivery voyage set for the Mediterranean Sea. A Turkish shipbreaker will dismantle the ship for recycling. 

The veteran vessel of 22,000 gross tonnage had over a 32 year career taken part in global conflicts and humanitarian rescue missions. In doing so the ‘Lusty’ as she is referred by crew has clocked up 900,000 thousand miles until retired following decommissioning in 2014.

A pair of ‘Queen Elizabeth’ aircraft carriers are been built in Scotland with other yards in the UK contributing modular sections. Among them Babcock Marine & Technology, the north Devon shipbuilders of the Irish Naval Service OPV90 ‘Beckett’ /Playwright sisters. So far they total three ships with the commissioning naming ceremony of LE William Butler Yeats in Galway held in October.

HMS Illustrious follows the leadship class namesake and HMS Ark Royal which together were sold for scrap overseas. Despite an open competition held over a two year timeframe that sought to save the ship or retain part of the aircraft carrier for heritage purposes in the UK, such attempts to keep the ship in home waters failed.

The Ministry of Defence deemed proposals by some to convert the ship as a museum or hotel as too expensive.

Published in News Update

#SoftPort - A major project by Dublin Port to 'soften' its boundaries between the port's centre headquarters and the capital city to enable a greater public realm is underway.

The work is the largest physical intervention by Dublin Port in 35 years began in September and is expected to be completed in 2017. The development forms a committment of the port’s 'Masterplan' which incorporates phase one the Alexandra Basin Redvelopment (ABR) project. 

The public realm project will significantly soften and enliven the Port’s boundaries with the City through high quality architectural and landscaping design. County Mayo based Wills Bros Civil Engineering are carrying out the project which won the contract in a competitive tendering process.

New pedestrian entrances off Alexandra Road and the East Wall Road will open out into a new public plaza north of Port Centre building near the 3Arena venue complex. At the entrance to the 1981 built building, a refurbished podium will feature a new sculptural sphere inspired by the spherical-shaped time ball that dropped daily on the top of the Ballast Office at O’Connell Bridge to signal Greenwich Mean Time to passing ships. From the podium, visitors will also be able to observe the Port’s operations from a safe distance, as intended by the original architects.

As previously reported on Afloat a new landmark featuring an historic ten-ton Stother & Pitt crane will form this future port-city public realm interface near the recently named Tom Clarke (former East-Link) toll-bridge. Crane 292 as it was known dates from 1968 and was in use at the port up until the late 1990s.The crane will be reassembled and illuminated and stand 35 metres high which is taller than the Port Centre.

James Kelleher, the Project Manager for Dublin Port Company, said: “This exciting new project has been designed with the purpose of opening up Port Centre to the City, using new public realm and maritime-inspired sculptural and architectural design to soften the boundaries between the Port and the City. Port-city integration is a major strategic objective for Dublin Port and at the heart of our growing programme of arts, industrial heritage, sports, community and educational initiatives.

The project builds on recent cultural, arts and industrial heritage initiatives by Dublin Port on the theme of port-city integration, including the reimagining of the Diving Bell on Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, the commissioning of new Irish music for Starboard Home and the launch of a visual arts programme Port Perspectives.

Published in Dublin Port

#HomePort - Celebrity Eclipse has been revealed as the first cruiseship by a major operator to 'home port' in Dublin Port by offering cruises that begin in early summer 2018.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie Celebrity Cruises begins the ships home port on a mini season of five sailings in late April, throughout May and until the end of June 2018. The 'Solstice' class Celebrity Eclipse with a 2,800 passenger capacity will operate cruises departing Dublin Port to destinations throughout northern Europe. Full details on the destinations on offer will be announced later this year.

It is estimated that more than 14,000 people are to start their cruise holiday from Dublin on the Celebrity Eclipse. The deployment of the German built 122,000 gross tonnage vessel to the Irish capital is worth an estimated €6 million and to the surrounding region in knock-on economic benefits.

Celebrity Cruises already features Dublin and other ports throughout Ireland in its European deployment, however this is the most significant increase in its investment into Ireland in the history of the global business.

 

 

Published in Cruise Liners

#DutchFrigate – A Dutch navy frigate HNLMS Van Amstel (F831) equipped with surface and anti-submarine warfare systems is to visit Dublin Port this weekend, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The 3,353 tonnes Karel Doorman-class multi-purpose frigate of the Royal Netherlands Navy is calling to the capital tomorrow for the purposes of crew rest and recreation.

According to NavyToday the frigate has been part of a NATO fleet earlier this year tasked to fight against people-smugglers in the Aegean Sea.

Launched in 1990 at the shipyard Koninklijke Schelde Groep in Vlissingen, HNLMS Van Amstel also has air defence capability. The 122m long frigate is named after from Captain Jan van Amstel a commander of the Dutch navy during the 1650’s. The current navy has six frigates of two classes.

Earlier this month it was the turn of Cork City to receive another member of a Dutch navy in the form of ‘Walrus’ class submarine HNLMS Bruinvis. The 68m long submarine with up to 40 torpedoes had docked in the port for crew time ashore.

Published in Naval Visits

#LiffeyPotential – Post-Brexit potentially poses an exodus of UK banks relocating from London to the EU and notably Dublin’s financial Docklands, where the Liffey flows through with barely any river-traffic compared to the Thames, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Since the Brexit vote on the EU referendum, property agents in Dublin have had a 30% increase on inquiries from UK firms looking to relocate. This is according to a joint report by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland. Potentially such an influx of thousands of financial services employees could further boost the Docklands quarter with spin offs leading to new river-based operations / floating businesses. The increased financial flight of capital could also favour related corporate sponsorship of tallships and powerboating races.

Among the major high-rise Docklands developments underway is Dublin Landings, an impressive 1 million sq foot central north riverside project also at Spenser Dock. This is a mixed development of offices, apartments and retails space includes the new headquarters of the Central Bank originally destined to be that for Anglo Irish Bank no less!

There are also plans at Spenser Dock for the DART Underground, this would be something of a Dublin version of London’s Canary Wharf Docklands. Passing this major financial district in June was RMS St. Helena heading to the UK capital, the first visit ever visit to her homeport of registry, yet notably having taken place after the 'RMS' made a unique call to Dublin Port 21 years previously on the River Liffey. 

As reported previously, Thames commuter-river bus operator MNBA Thames Clippers whose 15 catamarans will carry four million customers by the end of 2016. The operator MNBA do a lot more as they are also one of the UK's largest credit card issuers. Obviously there is considerably less demand for a Liffey commuter service, given the bridges built and since the Celtic Tiger and the extension of the LUAS Red Line to the Point. A commuter service however did exist in the form of the far more humble Liffey Ferry operation when compared to the busy Thames scene.

It was during the credit crunch crash that Liffey Ferry with the support of the then Dublin Docklands Development Authority (DDDA) ran a river-taxi shuttle service between bank to bank… pardon the pun. The river-taxi RIB named Liffey Flyer was aptly yellow in colour like its New York land-based counterpart. The three-minute hop between Sir John Rogersons Quay and the North Wall. The DDDA was transferred to Dublin City Council and Afloat at another stage will be examining DCC’s North Lotts and Grand Canal Dock Strategic Development Zone (SDZ) and its relationship with the River Liffey. The underutilised water thoroughfare and Grand Canal Basin is in stark contrast to some other EU capitals as echoed by Docklands Business Forum.

Outside of peak times, Liffey Ferry attracted tourists as it was a short-cut in which having personally availed to reach the working port of Dublin beyond the East-Link Lift Toll Bridge now named the Tom Clarke Bridge. There are currently plans at the river crossing to ‘reorder’ this area of waterfront where small vessels among them cruiseships transit through the lift-bridge to reach city-centre quays. The ‘old’ Liffey ferry whose origins date to the 14th century, was operated by Dublin Corporation’s own fleet that mostly served dockers until the ferry was made redundant in 1984 with the opening of the East-Link Bridge.

In regard to the Liffey Ferry of the DDDA this only operated for about two years and was always a stop-gap measure in advance of the opening in 2009 of the new Samuel Beckett Bridge, part of the Docklands regeneration vision. The swing-bridge was ‘imported’ having already been completed in the Netherlands from where the structure was towed on a barge and ‘sailed’ through the East-Link bridge as it was known then.

At present the Liffey has only one operator, albeit the ‘tourist-excursion’ year-round service of Dublin Discovered Boat Tours. They operate a 48 seat sight-seeing craft, Spirit of Docklands, custom-built for the DDDA when launched in Finland for Liffey River Cruises. The ‘Spirit’ plies between Bachelors Walk upriver to the Old Ha’penny Bridge and downriver to the 3Arena, formerly the O2 and before that the Point Theatre. As previously covered, the Liffey Line ran during the mid-1990’s a similar shuttle river-bus and night-time service for theatre patrons from City Quay using a former Shannon based water-bus craft.

On the North Wall is berthed the Dublin 1962 built veteran M.V. Cill Airne, a former transatlantic liner tender based in Cobh which has been a ‘resident’ of the Dublin Docklands for almost a decade. The static venue with restaurants and bars on board the 500grt vessel is located at a prime position close to the Convention Centre, host of a historic reception for Queen Elizabeth II in 2011.

Also gracing the northside is the Jeanie Johnston, a replica of a 19th century barque which tells the story of Irish emigrants fleeing the famine to start a new life in America. The floating museum tallship is undergoing maintenance but is scheduled to reopen to visitors next month.

Not strictly a Liffey operator, Dublin Bay Cruises in recent years began seasonal ‘summer’ excursions also from City Quay on a network linking Howth and Dun Laoghaire Harbours. St. Bridget is to resume duties also next month albeit in the context of ‘festive’ river party cruises.

Published in Dublin Port

#NewEPSOchairman - At the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO) General Assembly held in Brussels Eamon O’Reilly was unanimously elected as Chairman following a vote held yesteray. O'Reilly succeeds Santiago Garcia-Mila who chaired the organisation during the last four years.

The General Assembly also elected Annaleena Mäkilä and Bernard Mazuel as Vice-Chairs. Ms Mäkilä, who is currently Executive Director of the Finnish ports Association now starts a second term in that role. Mr Mazuel is Managing Director of the French Ports Association.

Upon his election, Mr O’ Reilly said: “I am very honoured to have been elected as Chairman of ESPO for the next two years. Over these years, ports will be challenged by the implementation of the Port Regulation and other legislative initiatives. There will also be a continuing need for ports to plan and finance major infrastructure investment at the key nodes of Europe’s transport networks. Overarching these challenges, however, is the global problem of climate change and how our industry plays its part in addressing this enormous issue.

“I would like to thank the Members of ESPO for putting their trust in me and I look forward to working with Isabelle and her excellent team as we represent the interests of Europe’s ports in our response to these challenges in the years ahead.”

Mr. O’Reilly has been serving as Chief Executive of the Dublin Port Company since 2010.

Today, ESPO has also published its Annual Report 2015-2016, which outlines the activities of the organisation over the past year. A copy of the report can be found here.

In addition, tonight will see the celebration of the 8th annual ESPO Award on Societal integration. The theme of this year is nature in ports. European Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc will be announcing the winner at a ceremony taking place at the Palais d’Egmont in Brussels.

Published in Ports & Shipping

Modern luxury cruise line Celebrity Cruises has become the first major cruise line to confirm Dublin Port as a 'home' port when a ship will call the city home during early summer 2018.

For five sailings commencing in late April, throughout May and until the end of June 2018, one of Celebrity Cruises’ 2,800+ guest Solstice-class ships will offer cruises throughout northern Europe from Dublin. Full details on the destinations on offer will be announced later this year. Over 14,000 people are estimated to start their cruise holiday from Dublin on a Celebrity Cruises ship in 2018.

The move is worth an estimated almost €6 million to Dublin and the surrounding area in knock-on economic benefits. Celebrity Cruises already features Dublin and other ports throughout Ireland in its European deployment, however this is the most significant increase in its investment into Ireland in the history of the global business.

Jo Rzymowska, managing director, Celebrity Cruises UK and Ireland, explains:

“Celebrity Cruises has enjoyed significant support from our travel agent partners and guests throughout Ireland for many years. Now we are saying thank you by basing one of the flagships of our fleet in Dublin for a mini season during early summer 2018. We know that our guests from around the world, and in Ireland, will love the warm welcome they receive when starting a holiday in Dublin.

“Calling Dublin home in 2018 is a major development to our European deployment. We couldn’t be more excited. Thank you to Dublin Port for their support.”

In 2016 Dublin Port has played host to over 180,000 cruise visitors on over 100 cruise ship calls, of which four were cruise ship turnarounds where the ship begins its sailing and guests embark. Celebrity Cruises’ confirmation of a mini season from Dublin in 2018 brings significant growth to the port.

Celebrity Cruises’ Solstice-class of ships are the newest in its fleet, all introduced between 2008 and 2012. In addition to luxury guest accommodation, designer boutiques, extensive bars and restaurants, they also feature a real grass lawn on the top deck. With extensive awards particularly for its food and wine, Celebrity Cruises boasts the largest and rarest collection of wine at sea and a host of exclusive restaurants on-board all overseen by a Michelin-starred executive chef.

Pat Ward, Dublin Port, comments:

“It has been a clear ambition of Dublin Port to attract a cruise line to offer our great city as a homeport. Today, that ambition is realised and Celebrity Cruises will be an important step-change in our history. The opportunities that this new investment will bring are extensive. We look forward to maximising this new platform for growth and welcoming yet more cruise ships and holidaymakers to Dublin for the first time.”

Celebrity Cruises sails on every continent in the world and has a fleet of 12 ships. Plus, Celebrity Cruises currently has two new ships on order, scheduled to join the fleet in 2018 and 2020 respectively, and a further two ships on option. The cruise line is part of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, the second large cruise business in the world.

Published in Cruise Liners
Tagged under

Sail Training Ireland recently held an awards event to recognise recent trainees who had completed sail training voyages with the support of Dublin Port Company.

Seven trainees were presented with their awards by Dublin Port CEO Eamonn O’Reilly.

The highlight of the event was the excellent presentations by four of the trainees who told the story of their voyages and the positive impact it had on them.

These voyages were made possible by the generous support of Dublin Port Company. Both Eamonn O’Reilly and Sail Training Ireland CEO, Daragh Sheridan spoke of the fantastic relationship between the two organisations and of the positive impact on the trainees and of the importance of the presence of the tall ships at the annual Dublin Port Riverfest.

Sail Training Ireland is Ireland’s National Sail Training Organisation and a registered charity, formed in 2011 as a replacement for Coiste an Asgard. The organisation raises funds to offer sail training voyages to young people from all backgrounds and abilities on the island of Ireland.

Sail Training offers a unique and very effective means of helping young people to reach their full potential. It provides a platform for personal and group development and offers a life changing experience that sparks a new perspective to help develop essential life skills.

The skills gained and challenges faced on board are transferable to everyday life and for some it can act as a stepping stone into maritime careers.

Published in Tall Ships

#PortReOrder – Frank McDonald of the Irish Times writes about plans by Dublin Port to ‘soften the hard edge’ between its Port Centre and the still-developing north Docklands.

Dublin Port, for long a nearly enclosed semi-industrial estate at the eastern end of Docklands, is planning to open up to the city with an imaginative scheme to reorder the entire area around its own headquarters off East Wall Road.

Project manager Jim Kelleher, who was responsible for the outstanding Diving Bell restoration on Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, says the aim is to “soften the hard edge” between Port Centre and the still-developing north Docklands area.

Port Centre, designed by Scott Tallon Walker and completed in 1981, has been marooned behind a stone wall that extends all along the east side of the heavily trafficked East Wall Road, which is extremely hostile to pedestrians.

Standing six storeys high on a podium, the new building replaced the port’s old headquarters at the Ballast Office, on the corner of Aston Quay and Westmoreland Street, which in turn was demolished and replaced by a half-hearted “replica”.

An architectural competition in 2014 led to Darmody Architects winning the commission to create a significant public space around Port Centre, including removal of parts of the unlisted stone boundary wall dating from the 1880s.

Principal architect Tim Darmody says his scheme is “all about port-city integration”, with an impressive set of gates on East Wall Road leading to a plaza in front of the port company’s headquarters and a landscaped “garden” to the south of it.

A new boundary made from pre-rusted Corten steel panels will replace the late 19th-century stone wall at southern end of the two-acre site, with a relocated 10-tonne Stothert & Pitt crane, dating from the 1950s, rearing up above the new wall.

This dramatic installation will be “painted, illuminated, celebrated”, as Jim Kelleher says, as a totem for Dublin Port and its history, clearly visible to motorists driving north across the East Link Bridge towards the Port Tunnel and M50 motorway. To read much more of a separate but port related development proposed by Dublin City Council, click here.

Afloat.ie adds among the reasons for the proposed crane relocation is the Alexandra Basin Redevelopment (ABR) project.

There has been a conservation assessment of such structures within the ABR that includes the site where Dublin Graving Docks Ltd operated until closure earlier this year.

In addition Afloat.ie is to further examine the background of the crane in greater detail as it forms part of the capital's port maritime industrial heritage.

 

 

 

Published in Dublin Port
Page 10 of 47

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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