New ferries on the Irish Sea routes

Discussion in 'Other Public Transport' started by Hornet, 2 Jan 2018.

  1. Hornet

    Hornet Member

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    Following on from the existing Ulysses, and the W B Yeats due on stream in July 2018, ICG are investing over €160m for a new Cruise Ferry for the Holyhead Dublin route.

    http://otp.investis.com/clients/uk/icg1/rns/regulatory-story.aspx?cid=500&newsid=962216
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 12 Jun 2018
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  3. gazthomas

    gazthomas Established Member

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    Good to see this investment
     
  4. Billy A

    Billy A Member

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    Also good to see that the new ship is being built in Europe rather than the Far East. Don't understand how a German yard can be competitive but there you are.
     
  5. kevconnor

    kevconnor Member

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    From what I have been told previously Dublin port has some quite niche requirements from ships as at low tide there can be as little as 4 meters draft meaning boats built with these specifications are naturally costlier. This is I guess is what may make the European ship yards competitive. I know Ulysses was built in a Finnish yard, WB Yeats was built in Germany and Jonathan Swift was built in Australia.
     
  6. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

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    blimey this thing will be a beast. And they're talking about triple deck linkspan if I read that right? It'll be the 3rd largest ferry by Gross Tonnage, behind the Color Lines beasts but a bit bigger than the Stena Hook-Harwich twins.
     
  7. Western Lord

    Western Lord Member

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    Almost all large passenger vessels (cruise ships and ferries) are built in European yards (Germany, Italy, France and Finland). The far eastern yards specialise in less sophisticated and more standardised ships (i.e. tankers and container ships).
     
  8. Flying Snail

    Flying Snail Member

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    Interestingly Stena have 4 new vessels on order at present from a Chinese yard, 3 of which are rumoured to also be for Irish Sea routes. To get 4 from one order they must be confident that the build will be to spec, it will certainly be a gamechanger for a Chinese yard if they do turn out a quality passenger ship. Stena also previously had some ferries built by Hyundai in Korea, the current Dublin - Holyhead Stena Adventurer and sister ship which was the former Stena Britannica on the Harwich route.

    https://www.niferry.co.uk/stena-e-flexer/
     
  9. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    3 are for the Irish sea, 2 are definitely for Birkenhead to Belfast. I'm presuming that the 3rd is replacing the Stena Horizon?

    The 4th is being chartered by Brittany Ferries for their Pompey to Spain routes, replacing the Baie Dr Seine which was going back to DFDS.

    Brittany Ferries having also ordered a newbuild for their Pompey Caen route which is being built at the same shipyard as the Irish Ferries newbuild.
     
  10. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

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    how big is the other Brittany Ferries new build? Their current largest is someway down the Gross Tonnage chart, they're not historically into massive ferries and presumably the ports would be a limiting factor
     
  11. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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  12. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

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    so about the same size as the Pont Aven and the chartered Stena vessel
     
  13. james60059

    james60059 Member

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    Chatting with friends earlier this week, it seems that the MS Stena Europe which has plied the route between Fishguard and Rosslare since 2002, when it superseded the Koningin Beatrix is likely to be replaced later this year with another vessel. It'll be shame if she goes, quite enjoyed the trips on her over the years to Ireland. Still I suppose it will give me the chance to sample another ferry :lol::lol:
     
  14. allaction

    allaction Member

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    In which case, is the MS Stena Europe still due to go into dry dock this winter (possibly Falmouth) for some work?
     
  15. Flying Snail

    Flying Snail Member

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    Dublin - Holyhead to replace Superfast X and if the current trends stay the same it will probably be the first ship built.

    They will need the extra capacity on that sailing especially when IF have their massive new build and Ulysses.

    The other big change is that the IF fast ferry will be reduced to a seasonal service after summer 2018.

    It was rumoured that Stena Europe would be getting significant life extending work this year and would be remaining on the route, this seems to not be happening this year and it is unclear if any dry dock will be happening now. The issue is replacing her with what? Until the new builds are afloat there aren't many options for replacing Europe.

    Personally, I hope she stays as any replacement is likely to be a downgrade and although old it is obvious she has been well looked after.
     
  16. james60059

    james60059 Member

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    I've always noticed that she is always in good condition when I've travelled on her between Fishguard & Rosslare, I did like her predecessor as well, the Koningin Beatrix although I think that only lasted on the route for a couple of years before going to pastures new.
     
  17. TBirdFrank

    TBirdFrank Member

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    If Irish up their game and bring most crossings up to Ulysses standards they will take some catching. Stena are good but nowhere near Ulysses, yet streets ahead of Irish's other vessels and especially the woeful Jonathan Swift.
     
  18. Bungle965

    Bungle965 Established Member

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    What is so woeful about the Swift?
    I found the Ulysses a perfectly acceptable alternative to flying, so I'm wondering if I should be intentionally avoiding Swift workings.
    Sam
     
  19. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    They need to get rid of Epsilon first! It's a Visentini, which is a glorified freight vessel.
     
  20. TBirdFrank

    TBirdFrank Member

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    Couldn't agree more as far as the conventional vessels go.
     
  21. Flying Snail

    Flying Snail Member

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    Swift is OK, ride is less stable than the large ferries but that is to be expected. Apart from the HSS all fast ferries are poor in anything more than moderate seas. It is only a 2 hour crossing though. The main problem with it is the unreliability due to weather related cancellations, particularly at this time of year.

    This is going to be the last winter with a fast ferry service anyway. IF have bought a second slightly younger, slightly larger one, Westpac Express formerly used by the US military. It isn't clear yet which one will be used going forward but they have already stated the service is going seasonal from this year.

    Not sure about the glorified part. They are liked by operators for the freight capacity and low operating costs, the stern-only loading is an issue on short turnaround routes like Dublin - Holyhead though.

    Epsilon will be around until the second new build is delivered in 2020 but W B Yeats will take over the Holyhead service from mid September this year after an initial period on Dublin - France.

    Speaking of which, the hull of W B Yeats was launched on Friday.



    The superstructure is assembled off-site and craned onto the hull in large pieces. She is due in service in less than 6 months, considering the building commenced in September that is 10 months from first assembly.
     
  22. james60059

    james60059 Member

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    I think as well if you book Rail and Sail via the Holyhead - Dublin route, the trains coincide with the Swift sailings at HHD too.
     
  23. Flying Snail

    Flying Snail Member

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    There are no set connections these days, trains run to their schedule, ferries to theirs and connecting passengers just have to work around it.

    The connections at Fishguard are still timed to meet and with the change in sailing times last year the railway had to shuffle around their diagrams to best accommodate the ferry times. Really the last remaining "boat trains" at Holyhead were the night time connections and in both directions they have been abandoned by the railways. Bizarrely the late train to Holyhead (00.40 from Chester) still runs but is intentionally timed to miss the ferry connection, enough time to stroll down to Salt Island to watch them depart, just not enough time to meet the check-in time.

    The daytime connections are anything from 30-90min. 30 is too short with it essentially being a 0min connection to ferries and is also very tight in the opposite direction because of the docking and bus transfer procedures, 45 in both directions would be the optimum IMO. Just to compare, the quickest connection I made was 6 minutes from the HSS docking to departing on a train.

    The current Mon-Fri connections are:

    08.20 from Chester for 08.55 Stena Superfast X
    10.36 (or 11.20 if willing to chance your luck) from Manchester for 11.50 Swift
    12.39 from Manchester, 12.47 Euston, 13.17 Birmingham via Shrewsbury for 14.00 Stena Adventurer and 14.10 Ulysees
    16.14 from Cardiff for 17.15 Swift
    19.17 from Birmingham via Shrewsbury for 20.30 Stena Superfast X
    00.48 from Cardiff for 02.30 Stena Adventurer and 02.40 Ulysees

    00.00 Stena Adventurer and 00.20 Ulysees to 04.24 Cardiff and 04.48 Euston
    05.45 Stena Superfast to 06.28 Cardiff
    10.45 Swift to 11.27 Birmingham via Shrewsbury
    11.30 Ulysees and 11.50 Stena Adventurer to 12.32 Cardiff, 12.52 Euston and 13.05 Manchester
    16.30 Swift to 17.30 Shrewsbury
    18.40 Stena Superfast to 19.21 Birmingham via Shrewsbury
     
    Last edited: 29 Jan 2018
  24. holborncentral

    holborncentral Member

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    I always find the Swift can be unreliable, plus it's not a very smooth crossing. I get seasick so I tend to feel every wave. The Ulysses is comfortable and the cabins are nice. The bigger suite ones are comfortable and actually have beds. At least I can be sick in private. It's the one I always use to go over to the UK.
     
  25. Hornet

    Hornet Member

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    Oh dear!

    https://www.independent.ie/life/tra...-sailings-on-new-wb-yeats-ferry-37002317.html

    The Germans screwing up! Who would have thought it! (Hope they get their emissions story sorted out).
     
    Last edited: 12 Jun 2018
  26. 158820

    158820 Member

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    The WB Yeats is finally on its delivery voyage. It visted Cherbourg today and is now heading for Rosslare. Should be in Dublin on Thursday.
     
  27. Billy A

    Billy A Member

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    I'm told that the problem was that the ship was built too short and the prefabricated cabins wouldn't fit!
     
  28. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    No there was a heating system fault during sea trials
     
  29. 158820

    158820 Member

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    Well sea trials started 4 months after it should have been in revenue earning service. I have read many different rumors. All we can say for certain is Irish Ferries have had a shocker in 2018
     
  30. kevconnor

    kevconnor Member

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    It's also been reported that Irish Ferries won't be running Rosslare - France route in 2019. Given the increased likelihood of a hard Brexit and increased direct continental traffic this would generate it must be quite poor economics already to considering not running it.
     
  31. unlevel42

    unlevel42 Member

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    The W B Yeats (currently at Holyhead) will provide more than enough capacity from Dublin to Cherbourg up to four times per week. First sailing March 14th
     
    Last edited: 20 Dec 2018

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