Brittany Ferries – Past Vessels

Val de Loire

Built 1987
Schichau Seebeckswerft AG, Bremerhaven, Germany
Size 31,788gt
161.45M x 32.01M x 6.20M
Capacity Passengers: 2,280
Berths: 1,686
Cars: 550
4 * MaK 8M552
Route Roscoff-Cork (and UK-France/Spain)

The Nils Holgersson was built in 1987 for TT-Line at the Schichau Seebeckswerft AG, Bremerhaven Shipyard. When built she was one of the largest ferries in the world, along with her sister ship, the Peter Pan. She entered service on 26th June 1987 between Trelleborg – Travemündev with TT-Line. In 1992 she was chartered to Rederi Ab, Gotland and later sold to SweFerry Ab, Trellborg.

In January 1993, she was sold to Brittany Ferries for $60 million and was renamed Val de Loire on the 14th January 1993 and set sail for the INMA Shipyard, La Spezia, Italy for a $80 million major rebuild. She emerged in June with a new bow and forward superstructure, as well as a redesigned interior.

She entered service in June as Brittany Ferries flag ship, and arrived in Cork for the first time on June 12th 1993 (with the Quiberon opening and closing seasions).

In September 2000 the Val de Loire suffered severe problems with her propeller shaft overheating. When the problem was initially identified it was hoped that it could be repaired on site but it was soon realised that it was more serious than first thought, and as a result a sailing between Cork and Roscoff was diverted to Brest and took 30hrs. The repair work took over two weeks, having been estimated at only one week at most. During this time the Barfleur was initially transferred to cover for the Val de Loire at Roscoff but as her return was delayed the Bretagne was brought home.

The Val de Loire made worldwide headlines on the 19th June 2001 when Spanish police uncovered a plot by the terror organization ETA to explode a bomb onboard in Santander and sink her at the berth following evacuation of the passengers. However the suspects were arrested in time, and the Val de Loire sailed safely on.

In October 2003 the Val de Loire made her final sailing from Cork and made way for the Pont-Aven. Brittany Ferries placed her on St. Malo and Cherbourg routes until November 2005 when it was announced she had been sold to DFDS Seaways. She made her last sailing with Brittany Ferries on the 19th of February 2006, and was handed over to DFDS soon after who renamed her the King of Scandinvia and she started sailing between Ijmuiden – Newcastle in March.


Built 1989
Chantiers De’l Atlantique, St Nazaire, France
Size 24,534gt
152.8M x 26.0M x 6.2M
Capacity Passengers: 2,056
Berths: 1,146
Cars: 580
4 x Wärtsilä-Crepelle 12V32D
Route Roscoff – Cork

Both the Spanish and Irish markets were rapidly expanding during the mid 80’s, and it was clear that the Quiberon could no longer sustain any growth, thus the decision was taken to order new tonnage. An order was placed at the Chantiers d’Atlantique shipyard in France, for the constriction of the Bretagne. She was launched on the 4th February 1989 and entered service on the 16th July. With the arrival of the Val de Loire in 1993 she was transferred to St. Malo – Portsmouth. In 2005 she sailed from her home port of Roscoff to Plymouth until returning in St. Malo in 2006.

Duchess Anne

Built 1979
Verolme Cork Dockyard, Cork, Ireland
Size 9,796gt
122.00M x 18.83M x 4.83M
Capacity Passengers: 1,500
Berths: 306
Cars: 332
4 x MaK 8M551AK
Route St. Malo – Cork
Roscoff – Cork

The 1979 build Connacht was launched in Cork on June 20th 1978, and delivered to the B&I Line the following February. She entered Cork – Swansea traffic on February 2nd. She tranfered to Cork – Pembroke Dock in May 1979. She was transferred to Dublin – Liverpool in 1980, and moved to Holyhead in 1982. In 1988 she returned to Cork – Pembroke Dock service. In 1988 she was sold to Brittany Ferries and sailed to Meyer Werft, Papenburg for conversion work, emerging December as the Duchess Anne. On compleation of her refit she undertook a short charter to Crown Line in Janurary 1989 sailing between the Hooke of Holland and Harwich. She was delivered to Brittany Ferries in February and entered St. Malo – Portsmouth traffic. In 1993 she returned to Cork when Brittany Ferries placed her on St. Malo – Cork – Roscoff – Plymouth services. On September 1st 1995, the Duchess Anne grounded in thick fog outside St. Malo harbor and was sent to Brest for repairs. In 1996 Brittany Ferries were in financial difficulties, and decided to sell the Duchess Anne and a freight vessel. The Duchess Anne made her last sailing to St. Malo on the 30th September 1996 and was sold to Morrsion Ship Trading, Croatia who renamed her the Dubrovnik and currently operate her between Dubrovnik and Italy.


Built 1975
Nobiskrug Werft GmbH, Rendsburg, Germany
Size 7,927gt
129.01M x 21.06M x 4.92M
Capacity Passengers: 1,140
Berths: 768
Cars: 260
4 x Stork Werkspoor 6TM140
Route Roscoff – Cork

The Quiberon started her career as the Nils Dake, built at the Rendsburg Werft yard, Germany in 1975. She was originally built for ‘Lion Ferry’, but was re-assigned before completion to ‘Svenska Rederi Oresund’ (‘Svelast’) which was a Swedish Railways subsidiary company. She first operated between Malmo-Travemunde. In 1967 ‘Svelast’ merged with ‘Trave Line’ following strong competition on the route, and the company began trading as ‘Saga Line’. The ‘Nils Dake’, along with her partner ship ‘Gustav Vasa’, continued unaffected, although the former ‘Trave Line’ routes closed. However fierce competition continued to grip the surrounding routes, which finally led to ‘Svelast’ merging with rival operator ‘TT Line’. Following the merger the Malmo-Travemunde route suffered from over-capacity and as a result the decision was taken to charter out the ‘Nils Dake’ in 1982, which was when she began operating for Brittany Ferries. At the end of 1982 the route closed completely. In May 1982 thee Nils Drake was chartered to Brittany Ferries to add capacity to the growing Irish and Spanish routes. The Ship set sail for Jos L Meyer’s Papenburg shipyard, Germany where she underwent a major refit. One of the major alterations was the conversation of the aft end of deck 5 from an upper car deck to create extra cabins and two cinemas. She emerged at the end of May as Brittany Ferries new flagship, the Quiberon and was placed on the company’s Cork-Roscoff-Plymouth-Santander routes.

Following a successful two years of service Brittany Ferries decided to purchase the Quiberon from TT-Line in 1983. She was appropriately re-registered in Morlaix.. The Santander route continued to experience rapid growth, and in the late 80’s it was proposed to cut the Quiberon in two horizontally and add two new decks however it was finally decided that the preferred option was for a newbuild, to replace the Quiberon completely. Following the arrival of the new superferry, she was placed on the Plymouth – Roscoff route. In 1996 the she was sold to French banking interests for FFr100m as part of a re-structuring of the Breton company. She was immediately leased back to Brittany Ferries, with no disruption to operations.
It was announced in March 2002, that the Quiberon had been purchased by ‘Linie-Lauro’ for services between Palma de Mallorca and Sete, France for which she was to be renamed Guilia d’Abundo. She made her last sailing for Brittany Ferries on December 20th 2002. In March 2006 she was chartered to Euroferries and started sailings between Almeria – Nador. For the 2007 season she sailed between Alicante – Oran for Acciona Trasmediterránea. She is currently laid up in Naples.


Built 1972
Soc, Nouvelle des Ateliers & Chantiers du Havre, Le Havre France
Size 8,075gt
116.62M x 19.23M x 4.33M
Capacity Passengers: 700
Berths: 410
Cars: 170
2 x Pielstick 12PC2V400
Route Roscoff – Cork

The vessel that launched Brittany Ferries Irish services was originally delivered in 1972 as the Terje Vigen to DA-NO Line and entered service between Oslo – Århus, however DA-NO Line had financial problems at the time, and she was sold to Skan-Fahrt K.G. Hamburg who chartered her back to DA-NO. In May 1975 she was arrested in Arhus, and soon after sold to Brittany Ferries for delivery in 1976. On the 4th of April 1976 she entered service with Brittany Ferries as the Armorique sailing between Roscoff and Plymouth. On the 7th of May 1976 she launched St. Malo – Portsmouth sailings, however on June 5th she ran aground in dense fog on the approaches to St. Malo where she damaged her hull. Following temporary repairs she sailed to Le Havre for dry docking where she remained until September. On March 17th, 1978 she arrived in Cork for the first time on a promotional voyage publicasing the launching of Brittany Ferries new Cork to France sailing (and also a new Plymouth to Spain service). With the arrival of the Quiberon in 1982, the Armorique returned to St. Malo. In the spring of 1986 she was chartered to SMZ to cover for refits on their Hoek van Holland to Harwich route, returning to St. Malo for the summer season. In May 1988 she sailed between Poole and Cherbourg for Truckline (a Brittany Ferries subsidiary) and returned to St. Malo in June. In the winter of 1989/1990 she sailed for Britich Channel Island Ferries between Poole – Guernsey – Jersey and returned to St. Malo in January. She moved to Caen – Portsmouth for April and May 1990, before again returning to St. Malo – Portsmouth. In December 1990 she was chartered to the French Government to carry troops to Yanbu’ al Bahr, Saudi Arabia. On her return in May she resumed St. Malo – Portsmouth service. In February 1993 she was chartered to British Channel Island ferries again, and on completion of her final charter at the end of February was laid up first in Cherbourg and then in St. Malo pending sale. In December 1993 she was sold to Xiamen Ocean Shipping Co, was renamed My Nan and set sail for China entering service between Xiamen – Hong Kong. In 1998 she was sold to Weihai Ferry Co, Weihai, China, and renamed Sheng Sheng. In 2003 she was sold to Dharma Lautan Utama, Belize who renamed her the Tirta Kencana and she currently sails between Surabaya and Makasar.