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Displaying items by tag: Stena Line HSS

#FerryEmergencyMotion – The Dun Laoghaire Gazette writes that there was unanimous agreement on an emergency motion to discuss the withdrawal of Stena Line's ferry services over the Christmas period.

Cllrs John and Maria Bailey (FG) asked the chief executive to suspend standing orders at a Dun Laoghaire local area committee meeting.

Councillors are calling for other ferry operators to be allowed to take over the Dun Laoghaire-Holyhead route over Christmas following the cancellation by Stena Line of all ferry services from Dun Laoghaire to Holyhead over the festive season for "commercial and operational reasons".

Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company (click here for their response) is now in talks with the ferry company about the future of the service for 2015.

Cllr Victor Boyhan (Ind) said: "Councillors united at Dun Laoghaire council meeting, calling for a special meeting with Stena Line management to seek details of their masterplan and commitment to Dun Laoghaire Harbour as a travel destination."

For more on this story, click HERE.


#StenaHSSroute? – has recontacted Stena Line if it is to resume Dun Laoghaire-Holyhead summer season service in 2015, given also their 'commercial and operational reasons' for cancelling Christmas sailings on this occasion, writes Jehan Ashmore.

When questioned on the discussions between Stena Line and Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company, the ferry firm reiterated that they are currently engaged in on-going discussions with Dun Laoghaire Harbour in relation to the provision of a seasonal fast craft service in 2015.

Since the introduction of HSS fast-craft operations on the Irish Sea in 1996, this is the first time that no sailings will be provided over the festive and early New Year periods. Passengers with bookings or those planning to travel will according to the company "be accommodated on other sailings best suited to their travel requirements". The company operate conventional ferries on the Dublin Port-Holyhead service. also inquired if Stena Line are considering an alternative to replace the 1500 passenger /375 car HSS fast-craft Stena Explorer with their smaller 900 passenger /210 car Stena Carisma or another fastcraft option? The ferry operator did not confirm or deny as the response given was simply the same reply as to the first question posed above.

Earlier this year, Stena Line withdrew the Stena Carisma from the Gothenburg-Frederikshavn route on the Kattegat Sea linking Sweden and Denmark. The 2 hour crossing time by fast-craft on the Scandinavian route is similar to the Irish Sea route which takes an additional 10 minutes.

Should a smaller craft be introduced and not the HSS 900, the issue of port infrastructure would seem less likely to require berth linkspan adaptation. 

Unlike the 19,638 tonnes Stena Explorer built by Finnyards in 1996 and as the first of a trio of High Speed Sea-Service (HSS) 1500 sisters commissioned, the 'Carisma' was the only HSS 900 class craft completed for the Swedish owned ferry giant.

The 8,631 tonnes HSS 900 was built by the Westamarine Byggs yard in Norway. Work did take place on a sister however this ceased having only achieved 30% of construction.

The absence of the HSS Stena Explorer leaves only rivals Irish Ferries currently operating fast-craft services on the central corridor Dublin-Holyhead route served by Jonathan Swift. The 800 passenger/ 200 car Austal built fast-craft is similar to the passenger and vehicle capacity of Stena's Carisma.

As previously reported, Irish Ferries announced they are to boost capacity by bringing ro-pax Isle of Inishmore onto the Dublin-Holyhead route, which in addition to Jonathan Swift is served by flagship Ulysses and ro-pax Epsilon.

The chartered Epsilon also runs a Dublin-Cherbourg service but only by sailing a round-trip at weekends.


Published in Ferry

#HSSservice–Stena Line's HSS Stena Explorer fast-craft is to return on the Dun Laoghaire-Holyhead seasonal-operated route on 9 April.

The HSS (High-Speed Sea Service) operates to one departure daily from Dun Laoghaire and Holyhead during this season, for further information on sailing schedule visit this link.

The central Irish Sea corridor route takes 2 hours and 20 minutes and this is the fourth year in succession of the seasonal-only operated service that in 2014 will run until 9 September.

Published in Ferry

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.


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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