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Irish Ferries Enthusiasts => The News Board => Topic started by: Collision-course on February 10, 2011, 03:19:47 PM

Title: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Collision-course on February 10, 2011, 03:19:47 PM
European Endeavour which is currently laid up is expected in Dublin later this month to replace the Norcape.

Below from www.shipspotting.com , the European Endeavour laid uk at Dunkirk , and the Norcape.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: gezdub on February 18, 2011, 01:06:41 AM
Norcape is back in use, and European Endeavour is in Liverpool..anyone any idea why this is?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: scomacsf8 on May 01, 2011, 02:48:13 PM
NORBAY will cover on P&O's Larne to Cairnryan route rom 7th May until 10th June.
She will operate the following timetable;
0400 ex Larne               0800 ex Cairnryan
1200 ex Larne               1600 ex Cairnryan
2000 ex Larne               2300/2359 ex Cairnryan

First of the regular ships to refit will be EUROPEAN HIGHLANDER from 7th May until 22nd May when she will resume with the 0730 ex Larne, while EUROPEAN CAUSEWAY will go to drydock from 22nd may until 10th June when she starts back in service with the 1030 ex Larne.

Presumably both vessels are heading to Harland and Wolff in Belfast for their overhauls, but this has not been confirmed...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on May 11, 2011, 06:10:36 PM
There was a programme featuring the refit of the Norbank on Channel 5 last night (10 May 2011) people in the UK can rewatch here, only saw a few minutes of the show but looked very interesting, the Norbank info was split up throughout the show with other cleaning areas.

http://www.seesaw.com/TV/Factual/p-41192-Supersize-Grime

http://www.channel5.com/shows/supersize-grime
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: scomacsf8 on May 30, 2011, 08:11:37 PM
NORCAPE is due to be re-activated to replace EUROPEAN MARINER on the Larne-Troon route from circa 24th July.

Word is the EUROPEAN MARINER is in the process of being sold...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Sam71 on June 05, 2011, 12:38:24 AM
European Causeway left H&W in Belfast today (Saturday) at about 5pm.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: scomacsf8 on June 05, 2011, 01:45:15 PM
EUROPEAN CAUSEWAY has re-entered service on the Larne to Cairnryan route this morning, thus completing the refit programme for P&O's North Channel vessels.

On arrival from Cairnryan earlier, NORBAY discharged and is now enroute to Troon for trials there. It is still believed NORCAPE will replace EUROPEAN MARINER on the Larne to Troon route this summer, but it is not certain whether this is a longterm or interim measure nor what the exact purpose of NORBAY's visit to the Ayrshire port is...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Irish Sea on June 28, 2011, 01:45:10 PM
Just wondering does anyone know why Norman Trader has been chartered by P&O and is operating on what was the European Endeavours roster?

The European Endeavour is presently laid up in Liverpool.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Collision-course on June 28, 2011, 06:40:42 PM
Norman Trader was providing refit cover for P&O ships away being overhauled , it was also under charter to Stena Line for Refit cover for Stena Adventurer.
Below from www.shipspotting.com Norman Trader arriving in Dublin.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Irish Sea on June 28, 2011, 07:58:29 PM
I was aware of this however as all the P&O Ships have completed their dry dockings already, I am curious why P&O have rechartered her.

Surely it would make more sense to continue using their own vessel in the form of European Endeavour? Unless perhaps Endeavour has suffered some form of technical problem?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: scomacsf8 on July 14, 2011, 06:58:42 PM
EUROPEAN ENDEAVOUR sailings between Dublin and Liverpool will accept motorists from Monday 18th July.

The 1500 ex Dublin is the first sailing to take tourist traffic and the schedule is 1500 ex Dublin Mon - Fri, 1600 on Sundays. 0300 ex Liverpool Mon - Sat. Meals included in all fares.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on September 25, 2011, 10:09:32 PM
Watch the P&O ferry Norbank being drydocked, as featured in channel Five's show Supersize Grime in May, now on youtube that the we can watch.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ps4zRyj43sE
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: larry on September 25, 2011, 10:20:32 PM
awesome, thanks for the link
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on September 25, 2011, 10:23:35 PM
and behind the scenes on the Spirit of Britain.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxjCZfPjzKA&feature=player_profilepage
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: larry on September 25, 2011, 10:34:28 PM
again many thanks for this, keep em coming
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Sam71 on March 10, 2012, 04:42:16 PM
Rumours on Wikipedia of Pride of Burgundy or European Seaway moving from Dover to Cairnryan...can anyone shed any light?

Not sure if this would be to add capacity or free one of the current vessels for service elsewhere. Can't see there being the demand for a third vessel, particularly with the capacity that Stena have added with the Superfasts...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 11, 2012, 06:33:06 PM
European Seaway has been chartered for use on a wind farm by Centrica Renewable Energy so thats not going to Northern Ireland for the next few months.

http://www.windpowermonthly.com/News/EmailThisArticle/Send/1121460/

As for the Pride of Burgrundy, would have thought it would be required on the Dover - Calais route as the demise of Seafrance leaves P&O with a need for capacity on the route.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Sam71 on March 13, 2012, 12:05:12 AM
Seems P&O may be interested in acquiring the SeaFrance Rodin and SeaFrance Berlioz though for the Dover run...

That would leave them with the two new Spirits, the Pride of Kent, Pride of Canterbury and the two SeaFrance vessels...so the Burgundy could be released.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on January 12, 2013, 10:11:17 AM
P&O are making some adjustments to their service on the North Channel for 2013.

The European Causeway and European Highlander will operate a reduced crossing time of 1 hour 45 mins instead of 2 hrs.

Express will operate to Troon only from 27 March;
Ex Larne - 0745 and 1645
Ex Troon - 1100 and 1930

Refits are as follows:
European Highlander - 23/4/13 until 09/5/13
European Causeway - 09/5/13 until 24/5/13

It is believed they will go to Harland and Wolff.

Norbay will provide cover and her schedule will be ex Larne:  0400, 1200, 2000 and ex Cairnryan: 0730, 1600, 2359. Causeway or Highlander will sail ex Larne 0730, 1630, 2000 and ex Cairnryan 0400, 1300, 2359.

Express will sail to Cairnryan at 1255 and return at 1500 during the refit period only.

These changes are obviously as a result of the impact the Stena Superfast service has had on P&O's operation, it seems the battle for the North Channel is getting interesting.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on January 14, 2013, 05:43:37 PM
This is very interesting and I agree that this is due to the competition with the Stena Superfasts, just as the closure of the Troon-Larne freight only service was.

I think that transferring the Express to operate solely on the Troon-Larne route, will provide P&O with the opportunity to get rid off her and the route in one move, over the next 12-18 months. What do other people think?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Sam71 on January 15, 2013, 11:31:05 PM
Can't see the Troon route closing. It provides a great access point for car traffic to Glasgow and Edinburgh, both for tourism and for university traffic (winter excepted). Also, the Express must be reasonably economic as fast ferries go.
A 15 minute reduction in crossing time for the Cairnryan ships isn't going to offset the hour you gain from travelling to Troon. It might help a little in competing with the Superfasts though.
I've always thought the Troon route must be quite profitable for P&O, given that they can afford to lay Express up for five or so months of the year.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on January 16, 2013, 09:24:47 AM
I am no expert on the P&O North Channel operation but I would imagine that the Troon route is far from profitable at the moment, it’s not that P&O can afford to have the Express laid up for five months, it’s really that it is too expensive to run for the five months (less passengers, bad weather etc) and they try to run it when they can at least break even and then possibly put it in a profit situation. They have to pay the charter for the vessel regardless and I believe that they have the Express chartered until 2015. The 2012 season was plagued by technical issues and P&O will probably be hoping that running a less intensive schedule will improve reliability for 2013.

The Express is scheduled to drydock at H&W Belfast this weekend, which means it will be sharing the drydock with the Stena Europe, which will make an interesting sight.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: pjamieson267 on February 09, 2013, 08:08:44 PM
" I Cannot believe that the crossing times for Larne - Cairnryan (Superferry) is 105 minutes again I am so please to see that crossing time again."  :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 04, 2013, 01:53:21 PM
It seems that the crossing times for the P&O operation on the North channel are not being adjusted and that the booking engine was just quoting incorrect crossing times.

The ferries will remain on a 2hr crossing time not moving to the 1hr45mins as indicated above.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on March 04, 2013, 04:50:51 PM
Well whatever happens it wouldn't surprise me: they reduce the crossing time to be more competitive or they don't in order to save fuel.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 21, 2013, 08:48:24 PM
With all the Irish Ferris and Stena Line Irish Sea refits completed its now the turn of P&O to start refitting their vessels.

First off the Norbank is going to Swansea for dry docking at the weekend. Clipper Ranger is the cover ship for P&O Dublin-Liverpool for 8 weeks at least.

(Stena Adventurer refit was expected to overrun, this is why Norbank is Swansea bound)

Norbay and the European Highlander and European Causeway twins are still for Harland & Wolff Belfast after Norbank comes back to cover for them.

Express is back at Larne as from yesterday and starts her season on 27 March. She has a new Club Class Lounge, Costa Coffee shop etc.

European Causeway and European Highlander will also be refurbished while on refit with a Club Lounge added and improvements to the bar and restaurant areas.

The internal refit-refurb is being carried out by Blu Marine.

http://www.blumarine.co.uk/index.html
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: pjamieson267 on March 22, 2013, 07:52:56 PM
Quote
With all the Irish Ferris and Stena Line Irish Sea refits completed its now the turn of P&O to start refitting their vessels.

First off the Norbank is going to Swansea for dry docking at the weekend. Clipper Ranger is the cover ship for P&O Dublin-Liverpool for 8 weeks at least.

(Stena Adventurer refit was expected to overrun, this is why Norbank is Swansea bound)

Norbay and the European Highlander and European Causeway twins are still for Harland & Wolff Belfast after Norbank comes back to cover for them.

Express is back at Larne as from yesterday and starts her season on 27 March. She has a new Club Class Lounge, Costa Coffee shop etc.

European Causeway and European Highlander will also be refurbished while on refit with a Club Lounge added and improvements to the bar and restaurant areas.

The internal refit-refurb is being carried out by Blu Marine.

http://www.blumarine.co.uk/index.html
That is good news about the new P&O Club Lounge for Express, European Highlander and European Causeway. The passengers will be pleased about it. :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 27, 2013, 09:52:44 PM
with Norbank now in drydock in Swansea, its time to repost a link of its last visit to drydock and see what they did to it last time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ps4zRyj43sE&feature=player_detailpage

[media width=600]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ps4zRyj43sE&feature=player_detailpage [/media]
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Stena Hss Explorer Freight on March 28, 2013, 01:27:09 PM
Wonder will they add wifi as anytime im on the highlander or causway to cairnryan ( very rarely i am but sometimes) bordness kicks in and just cant wait to get off the P&O boats ! P&O should have wifi as if you look at it this way .. every other ferry company has wifi in there boats .. Even aircrafts are starting to get wifi in there planes now .. Hopefully this is one of P&O's changes when they go in for drydocking!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: pjamieson267 on April 04, 2013, 11:27:32 AM
There is a video just release on youtube about the new look on P&O Express if you like to see it just press the hyperlink here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eKT91n6Lp6Y

This video should be good. :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Stena Hss Explorer Freight on April 07, 2013, 12:27:51 PM
http://photos.marinetraffic.com/ais/showphoto.aspx?photoid=1156370

Photo of the Norbank in Swansea Drydock LTD !
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Alanmac6363 on May 09, 2013, 07:08:28 PM
Norbay just leaving Belfast Lough now [19.05] after refit at H&W.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Ciaran212 on May 28, 2013, 12:29:46 PM
The European Highlander returned to Larne yesterday (27th May) after refit, sailing up Belfast Lough after 4pm.  By this morning the European Causeway was in H&W dock.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Robert 24 on May 31, 2013, 11:56:45 PM
Norbay will Sevice Her Service From Liverpool to Dublin in The Morning
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Robert 24 on June 03, 2013, 07:23:16 AM
European Endeavour is Entering Cammel Lairds Dry Dock
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Stena Hss Explorer Freight on June 06, 2013, 08:55:39 PM
The European Endeavour moving from Liverpool's Gladstone lock to Cammell Laird for repairs which were completed within 24 hours.

Photo Credits to Malcolm Cranfield Posted on MarineTraffic.com!

http://photos.marinetraffic.com/ais/showphoto.aspx?photoid=1238603
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Stena Hss Explorer Freight on June 09, 2013, 10:57:55 PM
European causeway seems to be due back on her normal dutys tomarrow ! First sailing is her midnight sailing from larne
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Ciaran212 on June 11, 2013, 02:08:45 PM
The European Causeway sailed down Belfast Lough yesterday after 4pm enroute back to Larne, presumably to be in position for the 2359 sailing last night.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on December 03, 2013, 07:17:22 PM
Some recent images of the European Endeavour in Dublin port here: (first four images from last week) had forgotten it was converted to double deck loading, unlike sister vessel Stena Alegra.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmackey/sets/72157632007090576/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: HSS on December 06, 2013, 07:43:18 PM
Those P&O Dublin-Liverpool boats keep going whatever the weather, sometimes in rough seas for up to 8 hours, fair play!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: smallboatowner on February 06, 2014, 12:27:33 PM
Express left her berth in Belfast this morning and seems to be on trials in Belfast Lough
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: smallboatowner on February 06, 2014, 01:15:37 PM
Ship AIS track https://www.dropbox.com/s/dk2lrwhkc7n77s4/Express.jpg
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 20, 2014, 10:24:44 PM
A few weeks old, but seems all is not going well with P&O on the channel

Quote
Eurotunnel subsidiary, MyFerryLink (MFL) and DFDS have eaten away at P&O Ferries’ freight traffic on the Dover strait.

The latest monthly figures, for December 2013, show P&O’s market share fell to 26.2% compared to 36.7% a year earlier.

For the same month, MFL and DFDS’ increased their share of traffic on the Dover-Calais crossing to 9.6% and 10.3% respectively compared to 1.5% and 6.1% in December 2012.

MFL entered the market late-August 2012.

Eurotunnel’s share fell from 42.0% to 40.2%

DFDS’ Dover-Dunkirk service accounted for 13.6% of the freight carried across the strait in December last year (13.7% in 2012).

The loss of traffic could be attributed to P&O’s rivals "conducting a price war at the lower end of the market," a spokesman for P&O Ferries said.

MFL, in particular, can only do this because it is being allowed to trade below cost by Eurotunnel, which is effectively sponsoring a price war in the ferry sector.

“This is something we hope does not escape the attention of the UK Competition Commission (CC) in its current deliberations as such actions make a nonsense of the idea of a level playing field.”
The CC is presently reconsidering whether Groupe Eurotunnel’s (GET) acquisition of three ferries and other assets from collapsed operator, SeaFrance, which are now operated by MFL, constituted a merger.
This follows a successful legal challenge led by GET to the CC’s initial decision which concluded that the acquisition contravened the Enterprise Act 2002.

http://www.lloydsloadinglist.com/freight-directory/sea/mfl-and-dfds-eat-away-at-po-freight/20018097398.htm;.f11b1cefac76ad95c7627468fee9bde7e866d022#.UwZ-1_l_ua8

MFL operating below cost may explain them winning custom from P&O (still the largest ferry player), but doesn't explain why DFDS continue to win share.  Interesting that MFL also appear to be winning (some) custom from Eurotunnel.  Of course the article doesn't mention volumes just market share meaning P&O's volumes could be the same or more but the others have gained new custom.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 07, 2014, 02:37:27 AM
Borrowed from the dfe forum (not sure if posted here before)

European Endeavour is scheduled to drydock between 17th April 2014-8th May 2014   (22 days in Dry Dock)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: LiverpoolIrishLiam on March 18, 2014, 03:03:14 PM
Some great pictures of European Endeavour from Scott Mackey. With EE, i'm surprised P&O haven't allowed foot passengers to use their Liverpool - Dublin service. EE is ideal for carrying foot passengers and I think many 'footies' who travel from Liverpool to Holyhead to travel to Dublin would use the service if P&O allowed them. I understand that the company/Peel Ports would have to invest in some port facilities, but it would be worth it. Does anybody else have any thoughts?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Collision-course on March 18, 2014, 03:37:35 PM
Yes the current situation on the Dublin - Liverpool route shows up the flaws in the current thinking of ferry operators , there is huge potential for a foot passenger service on that route , it has a city-break appeal to a customer base of nearly 6 million people within walking distance of the ferry terminals (well a short bus trip anyway) , in fact I would imagine that if there was a foot passenger service between Dublin and Liverpool it would gain a very large share of the foot passenger traffic currently using Dublin - Holyhead.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 18, 2014, 08:36:17 PM
Given Norbay and Norbank can only take 114 passengers, I'm sure P&O would rather this capacity was used by drivers accompanying vehicles (especially freight) than foot passengers given how much more lucrative vehicle traffic is as opposed to passenger traffic.  Going by their traffic figures I doubt they would be interested in the very small returns on the investment that would need to be made, given they are heavily laden with freight on their sailings.  Personally I was surprised when they started taking accompanied cars.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 18, 2014, 09:56:47 PM
Whoops!

Quote
P&O Hull to Zeebrugge ferry delayed after dock gate crash


A ferry was forced to return to port and was delayed for almost 12 hours after it hit a dock gate.

P&O Ferries said the Pride of York suffered minor damage as it left the King George lock in Hull for Zeebrugge at 18:30 GMT on Monday.

Following an inspection, it eventually departed at 06:00 on Tuesday.

There were 230 passengers on board the 31,000 tonne ferry, which can hold up to 1,050 people.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-humber-26636627
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: 20knots on March 18, 2014, 11:25:48 PM
Yes the current situation on the Dublin - Liverpool route shows up the flaws in the current thinking of ferry operators , there is huge potential for a foot passenger service on that route , it has a city-break appeal to a customer base of nearly 6 million people within walking distance of the ferry terminals (well a short bus trip anyway) , in fact I would imagine that if there was a foot passenger service between Dublin and Liverpool it would gain a very large share of the foot passenger traffic currently using Dublin - Holyhead.

Agree 100% with the potential. It was great when the Seacat was running and then the innovative yet sadly shortlived Irish Sea Express.

Wonder if there is any potential for Jonathan Swift to alternate between serving Liverpool and Holyhead. Irish Ferries already have an office a stone's throw from the landing stage and presumably the Jonathan Swift would be compatible with the landing stage (used by IOMSPC's Manannan).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: LiverpoolIrishLiam on March 19, 2014, 12:08:20 AM
It would be great to see P&O allow foot passengers on their services.

Unfortunately, the days of fast ferries operating the Liverpool to Dublin service is over. In 2005 when Irish Sea Express ended, I wrote them a letter telling them how much I loved travelling with them and how I wished the service would continue, they sent me a lovely letter with a photo of Sea Express 1 leaving Liverpool on her evening sailing to Dublin, such a brilliant photograph!

Since 2005 and the end of ISE, I believe another company should have came in and began operating the service because, it was and is missed and since the closure of the DFDS passenger service to Dublin, the route is crying out to be reinstated.

P&O run a suitable route for freight but not passengers and this really does need to change. European Endeavour is a suitable and her sailing times from Liverpool at 3am with a 11am arrival in Dublin is ideal for passengers who want to arrive in Ireland before the lunchtime rush of traffic. P&O seriously need to look into allowing foot passengers on their Liverpool-Dublin services.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 19, 2014, 03:12:31 PM
P&O certainly have potential on the route. We tend to use P&O a lot, and I have to say the courteous nature of the crews, reliability, comfort, and quality of food, lower prices, really gives the competition a run for their money. Remarkably back in June last year Norbank carried 79 car passengers on her 9:30 sailing to Dublin, I was on this sailing and I have to say it was a little cramped. The restaurant had to serve and re-open.

Exactly what P&O's plans are for Dublin to Liverpool are, well I'm rather baffled. Norbank and Norbay, though reliable (built in same yard as Isle of Inishmore + free), are 20 years old. So how much longer they will be on the route is debatable. I think, P&O will acquire larger tonnage, much higher freight capacity, and preferably passenger capacity (though not too high) than the 'bay' and 'bank'. Perhaps something like the 2007 built Superfast's. If P&O were to develop the route enough, then the Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull, might be suited to the route.

The logical thing to do is either transfer Norbank or Norbay back to the North Sea, or charter them out, and acquire larger better suited vessels, after all they are operating to capacity on most sailings. They are very nice vessels (I was lucky enough to be taken on the bridge of Norbay!). It's the smart thing to do before ICG and Stena get better equipped.

The other option of course is to sell to Stena, and given Stena's 12 quays at Birkenhead, would make sense. One guy I was talking to reckoned P&O were going to build their own riverside quay and new terminal, or move to the 12 quays, given the locking out costs currently. But then again P&O and Stena have a rather 'punch and judy' relationship, and given the situation on the North Channel, I don't think relations are that good.

Ideally if P&O got the 'Rodin' and 'Berlioz', they could release Pride of Kent and Pride of Canterbury, move them onto the North Channel and really heat things up. They certainly would cause a stir, and perhaps help P&O become the more premier provider on the North Channel. Highlander and Causeway could receive more cabins, have refurbishment and replace Norbank and Norbay.

- on a side note: Toilets on European Endeavour have all been refurbished in 'Pride of Kent / Darwin style', and recliner lounge (would make an ideal club lounge if modernised) and cinema is open.     

   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 19, 2014, 05:09:29 PM
P&O certainly have potential on the route. We tend to use P&O a lot, and I have to say the courteous nature of the crews, reliability, comfort, and quality of food, lower prices, really gives the competition a run for their money. Remarkably back in June last year Norbank carried 79 car passengers on her 9:30 sailing to Dublin, I was on this sailing and I have to say it was a little cramped. The restaurant had to serve and re-open.

Exactly what P&O's plans are for Dublin to Liverpool are, well I'm rather baffled. Norbank and Norbay, though reliable (built in same yard as Isle of Inishmore + free), are 20 years old. So how much longer they will be on the route is debatable. I think, P&O will acquire larger tonnage, much higher freight capacity, and preferably passenger capacity (though not too high) than the 'bay' and 'bank'. Perhaps something like the 2007 built Superfast's. If P&O were to develop the route enough, then the Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull, might be suited to the route.

The logical thing to do is either transfer Norbank or Norbay back to the North Sea, or charter them out, and acquire larger better suited vessels, after all they are operating to capacity on most sailings. They are very nice vessels (I was lucky enough to be taken on the bridge of Norbay!). It's the smart thing to do before ICG and Stena get better equipped.

The other option of course is to sell to Stena, and given Stena's 12 quays at Birkenhead, would make sense. One guy I was talking to reckoned P&O were going to build their own riverside quay and new terminal, or move to the 12 quays, given the locking out costs currently. But then again P&O and Stena have a rather 'punch and judy' relationship, and given the situation on the North Channel, I don't think relations are that good.

Ideally if P&O got the 'Rodin' and 'Berlioz', they could release Pride of Kent and Pride of Canterbury, move them onto the North Channel and really heat things up. They certainly would cause a stir, and perhaps help P&O become the more premier provider on the North Channel. Highlander and Causeway could receive more cabins, have refurbishment and replace Norbank and Norbay.

- on a side note: Toilets on European Endeavour have all been refurbished in 'Pride of Kent / Darwin style', and recliner lounge (would make an ideal club lounge if modernised) and cinema is open.     

 
There WAS a proposal for P&O to sell to Stena (back when Stena took over the Fleetwood operation) but it was blocked on competition grounds.  Not too sure there would be the availability of berths at 12 quays during the appropriate times either, and the Max ship size there would be lower than at Gladstone iirc (though could possibly be extended?).  Norbay and Norbank have served the route well, do P&O really want the hassle of carrying 100's of passengers every sailing as opposed to mostly unaccompanied traffic? 

Regarding the North channel I don't see anything happening any time soon.  IIRC the max draft at Cairnryan is 6m which might limit their options a bit.  Whats the free height like on the Darwin's as a key feature of both P&O and Stena ship is the ability to carry double trailers - both operators carry a lot of supermarket traffic.  I'm sure Stena would be more than willing to take Highlander and Ambassador of P&O's hands ;)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 19, 2014, 05:44:20 PM
I'm a bit of a P&O fan, but I wonder how much longer can they go on just selling routes to Stena. P&O in my opinion have made some good moves, getting rid of what they probably saw as 'baggage', but following the policy of all the eggs in one basket (i.e. streamlining so much all they have is Dover), is not a good business sense.

I think its a bit of a shame the company is very, very, very conservative, and aren't really investing in Dub-Liv, or Larne. Stena have done wonders for Liverpool to Belfast, and you never know, they might fancy taking on P&O on Dub to Liverpool. P&O really need to do something before they are the underdog, and it takes a bit more than introducing the International Food Court, and Wifi to compete effectively with Stena, especially on the North Channel. It would do the route wonders if they got the Darwins. Just imagine the Express and Darwins, that certainly would be a fine sight. To be honest the Darwins would be better suited to the North Channel than Superfasts. 

Stena have probably done more than P&O in the past five years than P&O have in the past 20 years. The Liverpool to Dublin route as Liam has pointed out, is growing. I'm sure if it was under the Stena flag it would be really developed, but I have to agree with many P&O does lack a Stenability. Its a shame as P&O has great heritage, very committed crews, very reasonable prices, and does have the potential out of all the operators to really compete with Stena in the ferry sector.

Darwins aren't bad for height, they can take trailers on the upper deck, in a good few videos on Youtube there are trailers on the upper deck, and don't forget they use to be just like the Seaway. I think the Darwins are just what P&O Larne need, and P&O Dover need something bigger as they look a bit out of place operating alongside the new Spirit class, and are vessels that mechanically 22 years old suitable for Dover to Calais? DFDS 3d's are technically 14 years younger, and for P&O Dover, and P&O in general to keep the quality and popularity up, new builds will be needed.

P&O might be holding out to see how the whole LNG fuel goes for Brittany Ferries, and then ordering LNG's rather than standard diesel engines (Personally I think this is what ICG are doing).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 19, 2014, 06:09:31 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3xEw2lJBis
- Norbank 1993 launch, North Sea Ferries & van der Giessen de Noord.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmackey/sets/72157631673828344/
- Norbank 2014 photos - Bridge in detail. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 20, 2014, 09:28:04 PM
Technical issues on Larne to Cairnryan mean a revised schedule in place.  The following is from P and O freight:

Quote
Due to technical issues today we are experiencing disruptions on our Scottish services.

Revised schedule for today, and Friday 21st; Ex Larne - 2000 now departing 1930, 2359 now departing 0130, 0730 per schedule, 1030 cancelled. Ex Cairnryan - 2000 now departing 2230, 2359 now departing 2230,0400 now departing 0430, 0730 cancelled, 1030 per schedule
.

I understand this is likely to affect the weekend schedule as well.  Not good timing as Superfast VII is off this weekend as well!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 20, 2014, 10:08:45 PM
Any idea about the nature of the problem. European Causeway was doing 19knots, so I don't think the problem is with her, maybe European Highlander is having issues. Hmmm of all the times to happen its the worst time. P&O Express is in Belfast, and a Superfast off service. I think P&O are planning to limp along. Depending on the nature of the issue, if its small like Stena Europe stern door thing, well it should be sorted.

If its something more serious that requires a trip to dry dock, it might be worthwhile for them sending perhaps the European Seaway to cover (if in one piece!), or if a Dover ship is due for dry docking, send it to cover Highlander that receives repairs, and then the replacement vessel receive dry docking at H&W. It would be interesting to see the suitability of a Dover vessel on route. If some of you can remember the Pride of Rathlin, she served at Dover - Zeebrugge, then Larne. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 20, 2014, 10:44:02 PM
Highly unlikely to send a Dover vessel to provide cover, normally Dover vessels require a different docking ramp hence cow catchers on the bows and no stern ramps the loadings on Dublin - Liverpool are excellent and P&O are probably very happy with the returns on investment.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 20, 2014, 11:20:04 PM
Expect to see Highlander in H&W at the weekend requires dry docking to get the technical issue sorted
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 21, 2014, 01:05:19 AM
Yes the problem is with Highlander TC, and it is pretty serious from what I understand.  She could be dry docked all weekend as giftgrub says.

Regarding Cairnryan, I don't think the berth can take a ship too big (I have 170m ish in my head).  The berth at Mackean Quay in Larne can take a max of 170m according to their website, the others are 165m and 160 so anything bigger than Highlander is going to struggle to fit.  I don't know what the Dublin and Liverpool berths are like so can't really comment on the loading arrangements though Norbay and Norbank definitely have their own ramps - not sure about Endeavour though as obviously she was converted to dual deck loading when she was at Dover (I'm almost certain the P&O Dublin linkspan is a standard single loading arrangement, and Endeavour probably retains her ramps from her original design).  Pride of Rathlin and Ailsa did indeed come up from Zeebrugge, though they used the smaller Continental Quay at Larne from memory.  There is also a new linkspan at Cairnryan now, again double decked. 

From what I can gather, starting with Dover and Calais TT/P&O started designing their fleet to be less flexible/more bespoke (which is why Calais and Dover had no internal ramps).  Being a standard design the Free Enterprise class had a lot more flexibility.  Zeebrugge got a new ramp in the 80's too IIRC which allowed double deck loading so removed the need for internal ramps - it depends on what brief Knud E Hansen where given at the time they where designed.  I have done a bit of digging today about the Darwin's and European Super-freighters.   They definitely don't have internal ramps (which the Free Enterprise class did) as they aren't shown on the GA plans on the net.  Perhaps this is why she has lain in Tilbury so long.  The Darwins will also suffer from any lack of flexibility that Seaway has which would rule all of the European Super freighter types out of Dublin-Liverpool if I am right about the berthing arrangements (someone local can correct me if I am wrong).  I suspect Liverpool is also a single tier ramp.

Ultimately I would imagine it would be easier to modify the Mitsubishis than to accommodate the Darwin's on the North Channel given the investment which would be needed just to make them fit, they aren't young vessels either so there would only be a limited payback.  All 3 Mitsubishis are different so there is obviously flexibility in the design.  The Darwins will probably see out their careers on the Dover strait (they would be ideal for anyone brave enough to run to Ostend for example, if P&O where to replace them) before following Dover and Calais to the beach.  Had P&O wanted to expand passenger capacity on Dublin - Liverpool they had the ideal opportunity to snap up the now Stena Allegra (Norman Trader) - she sat in Falmouth for what seemed an eternity and after all was designed for the route!  Certainly it would have been cheaper than investing in a new ramp (the ramp itself in Cairnyan cost about £4M) and the associated changes to infrastructure/port layout, etc.  Likewise to modify the existing ships would be expensive, particularly if the where (as I suspect) designed without such modification in mind.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 23, 2014, 04:37:22 PM

Highlander has remained at H&W today, however Express has moved to Larne.  She isn't scheduled to run until the 31st but would appear to be on the MacKean quay berth used for Cairnryan sailings.  Will keep an eye to see if she sails!

Edit:  Express is on her own berth.  Also, for some reason I posted this and the previous info in the Irish Ferries thread!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 23, 2014, 08:38:33 PM
I was thinking would P&O bring the Express back to cover for the Highlander, help ease congestion. Still it must be causing a real headache, especially for P&O. Not so bad for Stena as Heysham - Belfast and Liverpool - Belfast will ease things.

Its interesting to think 10 - 12 years ago Stena were the 'underdog' I think they only had Stena Caledonia, HSS Stena Voyager, and till about 2002 (I think!) the Stena Galloway. P&O had the European Leader, European Seafarer, European Pioneer, European Causeway, European Highlander, European Mariner, and Superstar Express.

- now only Highlander, Causeway, and the seasonal P&O Express. I say there is a strong possibility Troon will be axed, when the time comes for the Express is pensioned off. It makes me wonder will P&O Larne be down to just the Highlander and Causeway. Norcape would have been very handy now! hehe.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 23, 2014, 09:02:08 PM
To be honest its unlikely they will use Express, but I suppose its an option if everything is in place.  She hasn't budged today since berthing in Larne.  Given the Mitsis only carry 400 pax it might be easier to divert any overspill thru Stena anyway given the numbers.

This is the latest from P&O service update twitter:

Quote
Scottish service revised schedule for Mon & Tues ex Larne 0730 1330 1630 0130. ex Cairnryan 1030 1630 2230 0430 Call 0845 839 845 for update

So Highlander is off until Tuesday by the looks of things.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 23, 2014, 09:16:43 PM
Its very handy for Stena having the Hibernia. Norcape would have come in handy for P&O right now. Wonder what's up with the Highlander? 'Open heart surgery' must be half-way through. Lets hope it doesn't go the way of Pride of Burgundy. Last year she went to Damen ship repairs, I think with rudder issues, came back a few days later, appearing to be ok. Then about a week later experienced more problems, with her rudder. 

I'm not a great fan of P&O's micro-managed & streamlined North Channel. I think they could loose more freight to Stena. Good for Stena.... not so good for P&O. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 25, 2014, 12:27:31 AM
Highlander is still in the drydock at Harland and Wolff with what I understand may be a very serious technical problem (its hardly likely she would be in drydock this long for something minor at the end of the day).  As noted in the Stena thread Superfast VII returned early and resumed service at 19:30, with Stena Hibernia switching back to her Birkenhead schedule a day early as a result.  Stena will resume normal schedule tomorrow but still no further word on when P&O will be able to do so.  European Causeway however seems to be keeping largely to the 4 sailing timetable, even making up lost time despite the weather conditions up here today.  Let's hope whatever the technical problem is it has no repercussions for the two older sisters!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: smallboatowner on March 25, 2014, 12:54:33 PM
Highlander has left drydock and is currently under way lo Larne
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 25, 2014, 06:33:32 PM
nice image of the Highlander high and dry yesterday in H&W.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmackey/13400175325/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Alanmac6363 on March 25, 2014, 08:16:35 PM
Highlander has left drydock and is currently under way lo Larne

Did anyone find out what was wrong with her?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 25, 2014, 10:20:41 PM
possibly an oil seal failure on one of the prop shafts, fairly serious and needed attention.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 26, 2014, 02:28:09 PM
Two quite interesting articles on P&O Cairnryan, new twin level berth.
1. http://www.mclh.co.uk/index.php/news/view/po_cairnryan_berth_1_linkspan_replacement
2. http://www.irishnews.com/business/p-o-begins-renovation-of-cairnryan-ferry-port-1224339

I gather in the brief, P&O stressed they want to reduce turnaround times. Interesting to see introduction of Superfasts saw a 60% increase in freight for Stena. Personally I think this is one of the reasons why Norcape was pensioned off (loss of freight for P&O).

I would expect the development of the port might be the first step in 1. Reducing turnaround times, 2. Heralding a mini Dover - Calais style operation (i.e. highly efficient), that will allow P&O to compete more effectively.   

Highlander and Causeway are looking very smart after internal refits recently. Nice beige and blues, neutral colours (Scott Mackey has some good photos). To be honest I think they look better on the inside than Stena Nordica (former European Ambassador). Interesting to see they achieved 4.3 and 4.5 / 5.0 stars. The European Endeavour has very high marks now (4.5), (69 reviewers) and is proving popular. Its a shame they didn't acquire the Stena Allegra, a lot of folk complain P&O don't have a 3:00 am sailing from Dublin and 3:00 pm from Liverpool. A guy I was talking to on guest services on Norbay, said P&O were originally planning to use European Endeavour on relief duties on Larne - Cairnryan, rather than Norbay. Not sure what stopped them, perhaps berth fit?

     
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: scomacsf8 on March 26, 2014, 04:29:47 PM

I gather in the brief, P&O stressed they want to reduce turnaround times. Interesting to see introduction of Superfasts saw a 60% increase in freight for Stena. Personally I think this is one of the reasons why Norcape was pensioned off (loss of freight for P&O).

I would expect the development of the port might be the first step in 1. Reducing turnaround times.   

Highlander and Causeway are looking very smart after internal refits recently. Nice beige and blues, neutral colours (Scott Mackey has some good photos). To be honest I think they look better on the inside than Stena Nordica (former European Ambassador). Interesting to see they achieved 4.3 and 4.5 / 5.0 stars. The European Endeavour has very high marks now (4.5), (69 reviewers) and is proving popular. Its a shame they didn't acquire the Stena Allegra, a lot of folk complain P&O don't have a 3:00 am sailing from Dublin and 3:00 pm from Liverpool. A guy I was talking to on guest services on Norbay, said P&O were originally planning to use European Endeavour on relief duties on Larne - Cairnryan, rather than Norbay. Not sure what stopped them, perhaps berth fit?

   

The European Causeway and European Highlander already operate with a turnaround of only one hour so its difficult to see how this can realistically be improved upon. There is also absolutely no need for an increase in frequency with either operator on the North Channel. The existing linkspan at Cairnryan Port dates from 1973 and is only one lane wide so badly needs replaced regardless.
 
European Endeavour is far too long to fit in Larne Harbour...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 28, 2014, 12:23:14 AM
To be honest there is probably more than enough capacity on the North Channel anyway.  Stena went from 2 ships with 850 LM capacity to 2 with 2000lm capacity.  They also have the 2 lower car decks on the Superfasts which can be used if things do get busy.  Likewise P&O increased the capacity of their 2 main ships by over a third once the 2 Mitsubishis where in operation which did away with the need for an extra freight vessel. As Scott says, P&O's turnaround is already very tight and so if anything the new linkspan (if it ever gets finished) will improve timekeeping and reduce the pressure on the crew.  As I've said before, its freight that makes money these days and as much of that is unaccompanied sailing frequency makes little difference to that market.  They could run the ships even faster (they increased speed when Stena brought the Superfasts online) but costs would increase by an even greater amount whilst average loadings would be hit if there where more sailings anyway.  If anything sailings could be reduced in the off peak to save costs, though this may not be practical with crewing arrangements etc.

Re Dublin - Liverpool, if P&O had been interested in developing a passenger operation they could have kept European Ambassador instead of selling her to Stena.  Likewise Norbay/Norbank could have been replaced as mentioned before by Norman Trader with a third ship probably not to hard to have come by.  I think they are happy with the market they have got and are focussing on that, instead of the costly business of passengers.  I think passengers are more of a bonus extra fare than a core focus on the link.  After all the leisurely crossing time will scare away many, hence the marketing as a budget service - if they reduce the crossing time it will take away their big advantage for the more profitable freight market.

As has been suggested above someone could introduce a fastcraft between Dublin - Liverpool, but I'm not sure anyone makes any real money these days with fast craft in this part of the world unless they are either being subsidised or have a monopoly.  Fuel is already the main cost for a ferry operation, but with a fast craft this is doubly the case despite advances in fuel efficiency.  Once the HSS and Swift move on, I doubt we will see any central corridor fast ferry (apart from perhaps IoM services).  Likewise when Express reaches end of life I think she will be the last North Channel fast ferry unless significant advances are made in reducing the costs of running such vessels. 

BTW we are getting a bit off topic here.  Probably best continuing any discussion in the speculation thread or a new thread.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 28, 2014, 10:14:51 PM
The North Channel has indeed got a good deal of lane metres, with the Superfasts, and P&O's Japanese sisters, but from a business perspective, P&O virtually stood by and let Stena scoop high proportion of freight that would have been traditionally carried by Highlander, Causeway, or Mariner. I would expect P&O's stake in the freight has dropped on the North Channel from about a 70% to 50% (might be less). I think it would be a shame to see more retrenchment of P&O and more expansion of Stena, as before we know it nearly every vessel we will be sailing on will be a 'Stena ...' (almost the case now).   

Don't get me wrong, its great to see a company like Stena investing in its fleet, and ports. Superfasts are certainly very fine vessels, well refurbished, and well presented. It would be nice to see Dieppe Seaways join the Adventurer at Dublin, and receive the same treatment as VII & VIII. But Stena's expansion is aggressive and they really do muscle in on the likes of ICG and P&O. North Channel, and Stena's acquisition of Rosslare to Cherbourg being prime examples. And (lets hope not!), Stena absorb so much freight from the likes of P&O's Larne operations, in fifteen years time when it comes time to order replacements for the Highlander and Causeway, P&O use the old 'not sustainable', 'inefficient', 'loss making' line like they did with P&O Portsmouth, and pull out of Larne and Cairnryan.

Personally I think the only way to ensure long term security for P&O in terms of freight and on-board experience, is to be as good, but more importantly, aim to be better than Stena. I think P&O could really win back lost ground, through lower prices, a better customer experience. P&O are investing, but not as much as Stena, I would always say 'Is it not smart to be as big as the bear'. As we all know its survival of the fittest in this sector, and if P&O doesn't keep up, in the future they will have to follow more retrenchment, or face becoming the Trans Europa II, while Stena keep ploughing ahead.

Sorry if I'm rambling a bit folks  :). But anyway think I have said pretty much everything.     
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: larry on March 29, 2014, 04:42:37 PM
only just saw this now
http://www.shipwrecklog.com/log/2014/03/pride-of-york/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 01, 2014, 08:12:57 AM
Regarding Cairnryan's new linkspan, seems the plan is for it to be installed during the first half of this year.

http://www.irishtrucker.com/news/strong-future-for-port-of-larne-says-millar-011768

They need to get a move on as their is still no sign of it so far as I'm aware!  Thankfully their ferries are more punctual than new linkspans ;)

There was also a plan to use a temporary system of pontoons while the berth was being worked on from memory - sounds like an interesting watch to me!  I assume this would mean single deck loading while the works take place.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 06, 2014, 10:21:58 PM
I wonder if P&O wanted to, could they move the a vessel the size of the Endeavour to Larne. She's fairly long at 179 metres, but is shorter than Stena Lagan (186 metres). The 'Darwins' are 179 as well, so perhaps with the right modernisation to infrastructure, vessels like this could operate Larne to Cairnryan?

I guess manoeuvrability could be a problem with going longer. Though, lets not loose faith, I suppose there's always the option in time of having vessels like Stena Transit (though shorter) where the extra trailer deck can deal with that bit extra, and bump up P&O's capacity on the route, more to Stena's level.       
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 07, 2014, 12:26:33 AM
I wonder if P&O wanted to, could they move the a vessel the size of the Endeavour to Larne. She's fairly long at 179 metres, but is shorter than Stena Lagan (186 metres). The 'Darwins' are 179 as well, so perhaps with the right modernisation to infrastructure, vessels like this could operate Larne to Cairnryan?

I guess manoeuvrability could be a problem with going longer. Though, lets not loose faith, I suppose there's always the option in time of having vessels like Stena Transit (though shorter) where the extra trailer deck can deal with that bit extra, and bump up P&O's capacity on the route, more to Stena's level.     

See my post in the Stena fleet movements about todays attempt to bring SF VIII in to Larne.  Part of the problem with Larne is berthing a large ship as its not very sheltered at all - even Express needs tug assistance in less than rough conditions and she is half that length.  While in theory a 180m long ship could fit into Larne harbour (and AFAIK this is the official Max for the harbour - not the ferry berths), the margin for error is not great.  While Lagan was able to be brought alongside this was for an underwater inspection and not berthing in order to discharge over a linkspan and turnaround (with the time pressures that brings).  The other problem is at Cairnryan which itself cannot handle large ships either.  Stena had the luxury of starting with a clean canvas at LRP and chose the location very carefully based on modern requirements, P&O don't have that luxury and are in effect using the old ASN port which was designed for ships much smaller. 

In a way Larne has some of the same issues being a natural harbour.  Stena's Belfast terminal is built upstream from the traditional Belfast facilities on reclaimed land giving them all the space (and water depth) they want.  In contrast Larne has barely changed from way before Stena left to go to their first Belfast terminal never mind VT4.  Its ironic as many at the time said leaving Larne was a bad move on Stena's part due to the extended crossing time.  Stena have obviously made a huge longterm investment in the North Channel and this seems to be paying off.  On the other hand, P&O (who ironically own both Larne and Cairnryan so are in a good position to do something) have not apart from investing in the 2 Mitsubishi's.  While works have been carried out at Cairnryan (which the aforementioned linkspan is part of as was a new terminal building) they where badly needed and in a way ongoing maintenance (I get the impression there is a make do and mend mentality).  The linkspan for example is literally from a different era (an era when Townsend launched ships called 'Free Enterprise' followed by a number!).

The only thing bigger ships is going to do on their own would be create more empty space anyway.  The badly needed improved road access to Larne might help their situation as well, though this was needed 20+ years ago.  I don't think a withdrawal is on the cards just yet, and I don't think things are anywhere near as bad as they where at P&O Portsmouth either.  P&O have quite a low cost base I would imagine and are running 2 efficient and modern ships.  I also believe their foreign crew are paid significantly less than their Stena peers.

Creating a new thread for North Channel discussion as we are hijacking a news thread!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 12, 2014, 11:44:24 PM
P&O's long delayed linkspan appears to have finally arrived, accompanied by 2 Norwegian tugs - Start Sloevaag and Eide Rex. The linkspan was subcontracted to Norwegian company TTS by the contractors McLaughlin and Harvey who have been preparing the site.  The original press release from TTS is here

http://www.ttsgroup.com/Pressroom/Press-release-archive/TTS-signs-contract-in-Scotland-for-floating-ramp-structure-/

TTS of course also provided all the ship to shore interface equipment for Stena's terminal a bit further up the coast at Lough Ryan Port, including the linkspan.

http://www.ttsgroup.com/Pressroom/Press-release-archive/TTS-completes-Loch-Ryan-Port-infrastructure/

No idea when the new linkspan will be fitted, but would imagine it will have to wait until after the Easter peak period now as in order to do this the current berth will effectively have to be put out of use.  As part of the project a new berth has effectively been created (intersecting the old berth) which has involved reclaiming land in order to create an approach to the new linkspan as well as all the other infrastructure needed.  You can get an idea of what I mean from the graphic on this link which shows the new berth overlaid on the old http://portofcairnryan.co.uk/index.php/replacement-linkspan

This is certainly a welcome improvement given the current berth dates from ASN/TT/European ferries moving from Preston to Cairnryan in 1973. Here's a picture courtesy of McLaughlin and Harvey of the works showing the construction and its proximity to the existing berth.

(http://www.mclh.co.uk/images/sized/images/uploads/main/CAIRNRYAN_LINKSPAN-980pxx450px.JPG)

Scott Mackey also has some pics on his flickr account.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 14, 2014, 01:16:37 AM
Stadt Slovag left Cairnryan this morning bound for Norway according to AIS, leaving the linkspan with Eide Rex.  Interestingly it has been pointed out to me that the design is a little unusual with traffic for the upper and lower tiers entering the linkspan alongside each other meaning the tiers approach the ship at an angle in almost a V shape.  Going by the pic posted above it would seem almost the entire structure will be over water, unlike the current linkspan which of course is mostly on land so lower vehicle deck traffic can access the lower deck by travelling under the elevated section. 

For comparison heres a picture of Stena's arrangement (© Caldwell Consulting) a little further up the coast (built with the benefit of being an entirely new port).  You will notice that its almost a straight line from the port entrance to the ship itself, unlike the P&O arrangement which I would speculate is why they went with this unconventional design to avoid another sharp turn for traffic.
(http://www.caldwellconsulting.co.uk/assets/generated/projects/large/c5e78bba8474e81fac8ebe1838be392b.jpg)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 18, 2014, 01:27:18 PM
Interesting design. Seems well designed. Certainly was needed, and will help P&O compete more effectively. Still though its a challenge to compete with Stena, given the high-quality infrastructure (Superfasts & Ports).

To be honest I prefer the Superfasts to the Highlander and Causeway, on some fronts. Superfasts are more up-to date, better equipt in terms of design & facilities. Nordica, Causeway and Highlander still feel like freighters, and how everything is condensed on them, makes them feel more like ships from the 80s and 90s. In terms of design they are a bit like a mish-mash between the Townsend Thoresen's Spirit class & late 70's built freighters (European Endeavour I).

Still though always good to see infrastructure improvements. P&O Liverpool certainly could do with some!

On another note with holiday to the UK complete, so is my outward trip on European Endeavour, and the return on Norbank. So I'll stick up a post about it shortly in discussion. Generally very good. Food & service was good on both ships. The only issue for me was how P&O Liverpool terminal is so freight orientated, pre-fab waiting room. Car boarding area has been extended though. 12 quays is better equipped, but then again P&O work out cheaper than Stena. Quality of food I find is better than Stena. I still remember the dark days of Burger King & McDonalds! 

     

 

   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 09, 2014, 07:26:16 PM
Interesting design. Seems well designed. Certainly was needed, and will help P&O compete more effectively. Still though its a challenge to compete with Stena, given the high-quality infrastructure (Superfasts & Ports).

To be honest I prefer the Superfasts to the Highlander and Causeway, on some fronts. Superfasts are more up-to date, better equipt in terms of design & facilities. Nordica, Causeway and Highlander still feel like freighters, and how everything is condensed on them, makes them feel more like ships from the 80s and 90s. In terms of design they are a bit like a mish-mash between the Townsend Thoresen's Spirit class & late 70's built freighters (European Endeavour I).

Still though always good to see infrastructure improvements. P&O Liverpool certainly could do with some!

On another note with holiday to the UK complete, so is my outward trip on European Endeavour, and the return on Norbank. So I'll stick up a post about it shortly in discussion. Generally very good. Food & service was good on both ships. The only issue for me was how P&O Liverpool terminal is so freight orientated, pre-fab waiting room. Car boarding area has been extended though. 12 quays is better equipped, but then again P&O work out cheaper than Stena. Quality of food I find is better than Stena. I still remember the dark days of Burger King & McDonalds! 
 

I believe the new linkspan is going in on the weekend of  24th and 25th of May, which will mean there will be no service over those 48 hours.  From the 26th the new linkspan should be in use.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 09, 2014, 08:26:59 PM
Wow! Things have shaped up. Its a bit of bother P&O suspending all sailings for those days. I wonder if they will have the European Causeway do some runs to and from Troon, to keep things ticking over? Suppose its an option and Troon is hardly bustling! I guess from a passenger perspective its just a change to perhaps the time (working round P&O Express) and updating the booking engine.

Would the Highlander fit Troon? I'm guessing so as Norbay did trials back last year? or 2012.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 10, 2014, 07:52:17 PM
Wow! Things have shaped up. Its a bit of bother P&O suspending all sailings for those days. I wonder if they will have the European Causeway do some runs to and from Troon, to keep things ticking over? Suppose its an option and Troon is hardly bustling! I guess from a passenger perspective its just a change to perhaps the time (working round P&O Express) and updating the booking engine.

Would the Highlander fit Troon? I'm guessing so as Norbay did trials back last year? or 2012.
Not surprising they are doing it over the weekend when freight will be at its lowest.  It is a bank holiday weekend though, but they have probably looked at their bookings and decided it was justifiable to loose those sailings.  Dont know what alternative people will be offered.  Stena would probably have spare capacity (especially for freight) and as for Express I have no idea what her loadings are like this year.  As its a weekend Stena could also lay on Hibernia if somehow traffic justified it, but I doubt it would unless line of the Superfasts went technical.  Not too sure about Highlander and troon but Causeway definitely fits.  A 48 hour service suspension would be a good opportunity to take care of any onboard maintenance and housekeeping needing done before the peak tourist season though.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 11, 2014, 12:11:01 AM
Certainly would be a good time for interior cosmetics ect. I'm a little surprised P&O haven't done a deal with Ulsterbus for Troon, or some sort of Sailrail. Troon has rail access, and its only 30 minutes from Glasgow. As we know there wouldn't be as much money in passengers, but I'm sure it would be an attractive offer.

As for numbers, I'd hope there high enough. P&O have done a bit of heavy marketing for the North Channel which should help. The Express isn't that much younger than the HSS, but being the only operator in that neck of the woods with a HSC makes me wonder why they haven't put a bit more of an emphasis on coach & sailrail traffic, and general convenience of Troon. I hope the P&O Express doesn't go the way of the Stena Lynx III (I recall seeing her back in 2009 laid up at P&O Dublin. Wish I took some photos  >:() 

It would be a shame considering the upgrades they have made.

 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 17, 2014, 06:22:18 PM
Looks like somethings up with European Causeway.  Not ideal given the upcoming service suspension.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 17, 2014, 06:26:14 PM
Looks like somethings up with European Causeway.  Not ideal given the upcoming service suspension.
And confirmation from P&O

Quote
P&O Ferries Updates @POferriesupdate
Please note there will be no sailing @ 16:30 ex Larne or 20:00 ex Cairnryan today. All other services are operating as scheduled.

Causeway has moved to a different berth than usual as well.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 17, 2014, 11:21:29 PM
Looks like somethings up with European Causeway.  Not ideal given the upcoming service suspension.
And confirmation from P&O

Quote
P&O Ferries Updates @POferriesupdate
Please note there will be no sailing @ 16:30 ex Larne or 20:00 ex Cairnryan today. All other services are operating as scheduled.

Causeway has moved to a different berth than usual as well.

European Causeway is back to her normal berth.  P&O's latest twitter update says all services running as normal.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 29, 2014, 05:26:50 AM
I believe the new linkspan is going in on the weekend of  24th and 25th of May, which will mean there will be no service over those 48 hours.  From the 26th the new linkspan should be in use.
Just to update (sorry for the delay, been I'll again!), AFAIK all went according to plan and the new linkspan has been in use from Monday
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 14, 2014, 10:01:49 PM
Also posted in the emissions thread - not news as such but involves P&O
Quote
FERRY fares are set to soar next year when new pollution rules come into force.

P&O, DFDS and MyFerryLink must all lower their sulphur emissions by forking out on expensive fuel or investing in "scrubbers".

And passengers and freight customers will have to foot the bill by paying higher prices.

In a P&O staff briefing, seen by Dockside, the firm reveals its fuel costs could increase by a whopping £30million a year.

The document, circulated last month, says: "These extra costs cannot be absorbed by us and will have to be passed on in full to our customers."

The warning comes after ferry operators were ordered by the International Maritime Organisation and European Union to be more environmentally friendly.

Sulphur emissions must be reduced to just 0.1 per cent, from a current high of around 4.5 per cent, by January 1, 2015.

P&O spokesman Brian Rees said: "This is up there with the arrival of the Channel Tunnel and the abolition of duty free – the real industry game-changers.

"The huge increase in our costs is going to be very challenging."

The UK Chamber of Shipping commissioned a report last year which warns of price rises of 20 per cent for passengers and 30 per cent for freight customers.

The report says this could result in 2,000 job losses in the UK ferry industry.

Mr Rees admitted P&O "needs to keep looking for cost efficiencies across the business".

Both P&O and DFDS are set to switch to low-sulphur fuels in January.

But the Danish operator has also invested £80m in "sulphur scrubbers", although they have not yet been installed in its Dover vessels.

DFDS cross-Channel chief Carsten Jensen said it is "inevitable" the price of crossings will go up.

MyFerryLink will comply with the rulings, according to owners Eurotunnel, if it manages to cling onto its place on the route in the face of a competition probe.

But the shuttle firm is set to profit whatever the outcome.

Eurotunnel spokesman John Keefe said: "The whole purpose of the tunnel is as a premium service offering speed, so it is priced at a premium.

"If the ferries push prices up, our prices will be pushed up."

Dover MP Charlie Elphicke said: "I'm deeply concerned the new rules give yet another unfair advantage to the Channel Tunnel – which is bad for jobs in Dover.

"This is yet another case of European law that needs to be reformed.

"I've been making strong representations to the shipping minister Stephen Hammond about the European proposals."

Contact Dockside reporter Phil Hayes on 01303 851660 or email [email protected]



Read more: http://www.dover-express.co.uk/Pollution-crackdown-mean-higher-ferry-fares/story-21225666-detail/story.html#ixzz34eLFe0Mc
Read more at http://www.dover-express.co.uk/Pollution-crackdown-mean-higher-ferry-fares/story-21225666-detail/story.html#sKVt7eEj8HzmC6Bo.99
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 15, 2014, 01:03:30 AM
Given the general age of P&O's fleet, its not the youngest, and possibly the best thing they can do is to design a new class of vessel. Canterbury, Kent, Burgundy & Seaway, aren't the youngest 20+. Exactly what can be done with the Dover vessels eludes me. As Steven pointed out they all suffer the same problem as the Dover and Calais. They seem too young to send to the scrappy, and bit too old for investment. 

I'm not sure how SNAV are fixed up but they certainly found use for Norland & Norstar, which were 27 at the time of their acquisition. Perhaps a similar operator can charter Bruges and York? Chartering the Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull, certainly (along with Bruges & York) would bring in revenue for P&O.

I would say a project similar to BF's 'Pegasus' is what P&O need. A highly uniform design, with maximum efficiencies, low running costs, and more than enough measures to keep the green police from imposing fines. Building probably would be best done in a low-cost, though experienced group, for example HHI or MHI.  A 'one shoe fits all' approach wouldn't be a bad thing, as long as their is one design for short-sea (i.e. Dover) and motorways of the seas (i.e Hull & Central Corridor / Liverpool - Dublin). 

Much of the P&O fleet would be suitable for chartering (i.e. Norbank & Norbay). Its a gamble, making much of the fleet defunct, but lets face it their getting on, and if Stena RoRo can make chartering work, P&O stand a chance.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 15, 2014, 02:41:51 AM
Given the general age of P&O's fleet, its not the youngest, and possibly the best thing they can do is to design a new class of vessel. Canterbury, Kent, Burgundy & Seaway, aren't the youngest 20+. Exactly what can be done with the Dover vessels eludes me. As Steven pointed out they all suffer the same problem as the Dover and Calais. They seem too young to send to the scrappy, and bit too old for investment. 

I'm not sure how SNAV are fixed up but they certainly found use for Norland & Norstar, which were 27 at the time of their acquisition. Perhaps a similar operator can charter Bruges and York? Chartering the Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull, certainly (along with Bruges & York) would bring in revenue for P&O.

I would say a project similar to BF's 'Pegasus' is what P&O need. A highly uniform design, with maximum efficiencies, low running costs, and more than enough measures to keep the green police from imposing fines. Building probably would be best done in a low-cost, though experienced group, for example HHI or MHI.  A 'one shoe fits all' approach wouldn't be a bad thing, as long as their is one design for short-sea (i.e. Dover) and motorways of the seas (i.e Hull & Central Corridor / Liverpool - Dublin). 

Much of the P&O fleet would be suitable for chartering (i.e. Norbank & Norbay). Its a gamble, making much of the fleet defunct, but lets face it their getting on, and if Stena RoRo can make chartering work, P&O stand a chance.
The big difference is Stena Ro Ro have decades of experience and specialist expertise (with a reputation to match) in the charter market, P&O have some experience but nowhere near what Stena have.  Additionally Stena can do everything in house, I doubt P&O could have that capability. 

IF P&O where able to acquire Rodin and Berloiz then I would say they where pretty much sorted on the Calais run.  The twins up at Cairnryan are pretty young, Norbay and Norbank would be easily replaced (with dedicated freighters), Rotterdam and Hull are also quite new, and with the way things are going with emissions and costs Zeebrugge may just be closed - it isn't all that far by road between Zeebrugge and Rotterdam nowadays and given the amount of competition for freight to the Belgian and Dutch ports P&O would be in a stronger position concentrating on one route IMO rather than competing with the other routes to Belgium which have a lower cost base (due to originating further south so having lower fuel costs, as well as using purpose built tonnage).  If Zeebrugge does stay I would think it will be much more geared towards freight, or even offer a limited passenger service like Dublin-Liverpool.  I wouldn't say Bruges and York have reached the end with P&O just yet, but given their age and non-standard design costs must be rising.  They certainly wont be as efficient as more modern ships which could be what kills the route at the end of the day with rising fuel prices and the switch to even more expensive fuel.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: jonno on June 18, 2014, 03:44:26 PM
Belgium have spent a huge amount of money on Zeebrugge including infrastructure but I'd have to agree with Steve, most of the money has been spent on freight logistics, the RoPax component is very small, however, a great many Brits use the route for short breaks in Brugge...

With three carriers serving the UK and Holland, maybe there is an argument for P&O to reduce capacity on both crossings, doing away with the inner quay and serving Zeebrugge with POH...?

Considering their size, vehicle capacity is half what DFDS offer from Newcastle.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 21, 2014, 06:22:30 PM
Video from P&O about the improvements on the North Channel.  Also features P&O's new branding.  Nice to see the new linkspan in action - the layout seems to look well.  The strapline at the end is very telling ;)

http://youtu.be/KNhfgJDkb6g

It has been reported on FONE that Stena Scotia will go to P&O Tilbury-Zeebrugge as refit cover when she finishes her current charter in the med.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 23, 2014, 05:14:28 PM
P&O's new branding... hmmm. I have to admit I was a fan of the previous 'P&O Ferries' and 'P&O European Ferries' branding  :'(. The previous one looked a bit more professional. I think it looks slightly amateur when compared with the 'Stena Line' branding.  Seems more like a step backwards.  ??? (I think Stena dropping 'Making good time' on the core areas has been a good move).

As for the strapline, freight is indeed important, but I'd very much doubt P&O spent a good few million on the Club Lounge and refits on the Highlander, Causeway, and Express for nothing. I think they will stay focused on freight (that's where the money is), but slowly develop a firm passenger base. Nothing huge, just enough to prevent them from loosing the sector  to Stena. Hard though all the same as the Superfasts have a higher passenger capacity, but P&O have more sailings and also the Express.     
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 23, 2014, 06:54:21 PM
Report on Facebook that Zeebrugge berth 107's pontoon (The normal Hull berth) has SANK!

The Hull ferries are loading from 106 today, with Bruges originally using 113 earlier!

RE Cairnryan, I think they are wise concentrating on freight to be honest.  At least they can go head to head with Stena, whereas for passengers they cant compete.  Even if they had the facilities they still cant physically take the passenger numbers Stena can.

Also from P&O's official Facebook page a few days ago, they have signed a deal with Starbucks which will see Starbucks coffee branding rolled out across the fleet.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 25, 2014, 10:15:02 PM
Report on Facebook that Zeebrugge berth 107's pontoon (The normal Hull berth) has SANK!

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10154274674230363&set=a.10153929554265363.1073741826.241786300362&type=1&relevant_count=1

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152540103254948&set=gm.749607798437566&type=1
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 27, 2014, 09:32:47 PM
That was a bit out of the blue. How old is the link-span? I think its the same one used by the Norland & Norstar.   ???
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 27, 2014, 11:56:45 PM
That was a bit out of the blue. How old is the link-span? I think its the same one used by the Norland & Norstar.   ???
Correct
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 29, 2014, 08:35:16 PM
It appears that the 107 pontoon at Zeebrugge is back in service.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on July 02, 2014, 11:54:47 PM
That was quick! hehe
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 03, 2014, 12:25:12 AM
That was quick! hehe
A little too quick perhaps?  Time will tell.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 17, 2014, 05:36:29 PM
Quote
Larne, Cairnryan & Troon Services

                                                   ***IMPORTANT INFORMATION***
                                                            Sunday 17th August

Due to forecasted adverse weather conditions P&O Express ( Fast Craft ) sailings between Larne & Troon have been cancelled.

All passengers booked to travel from Troon - Larne are advised to contact 0845 839 0845 to make alternative travel arrangements before travelling to Cairnryan Port, as sailings are fully booked and we are unable to accept any new bookings until 23:00hrs on Sunday 17th August

Passengers booked to travel from Larne – Troon will be accommodated on the next available sailing to Cairnryan.

 

All Superferry sailings are operating to schedule

** Please note check-in closes 30 minutes prior to departure

Dover - Calais sailings are also running up to 60 mins behind schedule
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 10, 2014, 03:40:16 AM
Quote
2014 September 8 13:02

Bore Ltd and P&O Ferries ink an agreement for the continued charter of M/V Bore Song in the North Sea
Bore Ltd and P&O Ferries ink an agreement for the continued charter of M/V Bore Song in the North Sea trade after the current chartering arrangements expire in December 2014, the company said in its press release.
M/V Bore Song was built in 2011 embracing a new concept – Bore RoFlex – with flexible carrying capacity, fuel efficiency and reduced emissions with its single common rail engine, thus representing an environmentally friendly alternative. With forthcoming new legislations regarding sulphur emissions, Bore has decided to install a scrubber onboard the vessel to further reduce the vessel’s environmental footprint as of January 2015. The chosen solution is a turnkey delivery of an exhaust gas cleaning system from the newly established Deltamarin Floating Construction Ltd and based on the DeltaLangh scrubber technology.
John Garner, Fleet Director for P&O Ferries says: “We enjoy a strong technical partnership with Bore and commend them for this scrubber installation. It is good news for P&O Ferries as we strive to meet the new emissions requirements which come into force next year and it is good news for our customers too. M/V Bore Song has proven to be well suited to meet the requirements of our North Sea trade and we are therefore very pleased to have been able to secure an extension to the current chartering arrangements which will enable our company to continue to provide an excellent service to our freight customers.”
Håkan Modig, CEO for Bore, states: “As a shipping partner to our customer P&O Ferries, we strive to meet and come forward with alternatives towards sustainable solutions for the trade our vessel is serving. The extended charter proves that we have been able to show our commitment towards our customer. The scrubber solution chosen for M/V Bore Song is well suited for the vessel and the customer she is operating for.”
Rami Hirsimäki, CEO Deltamarin Floating Construction Oy, affirms “We are very pleased to be able to deliver the hybrid scrubber solution for M/V Bore Song. Especially closed loop cleaning process represents advantageous features of the DeltaLangh type exhaust cleaning system resulting in dry sludge with very low water content.”
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on November 22, 2014, 08:10:18 PM
This one doesn't seem to have been picked up on here yet
Quote
It is now possible to book 2015 Larne to Troon sailings on the P&O website. The biggest change to the timetable is the reduction to a single round trip per day departing Larne at 16:00 (arriving 18:15) and Troon at 19:15 (arriving 21:30) EXCEPT Saturdays where Express will depart Larne at 08:00 and return at 19:15 as normal and Fridays where she departs Larne at 08:15 and Tronn at 11:45. A second round trip departing Larne at 08:15 and Troon at 11:45 will be added from 26/6/15 for the school holidays resulting in 2 departures 7 days a week.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on November 25, 2014, 02:45:34 PM
From NIFerrySite.co.uk

Quote
P&O's European Highlander and European Causeway are scheduled to dry dock at Harland and Wolff between 13th of April and 14th of May 2015. Norbay is expected to provide cover with Express also providing one round trip per day to Cairnryan during this period. Sailings ex Larne will be:

04:00, 07:30, 11:59 (fast), 12:00, 16:30, 20:00, and 23:59. Times ex Cairnryan are the same apart from the fast trip, which will depart at 14:00.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 09, 2014, 10:31:48 PM
P&O services to Cairnryan are operating with slight delays according to their status web page.  This could be due to the weather, or due to all the transfers they are taking from Stena!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 10, 2014, 08:35:40 PM
P&O services to Cairnryan are operating with slight delays according to their status web page.  This could be due to the weather, or due to all the transfers they are taking from Stena!
P&O Cairnryan services are still operating with delays, with the company advising people who's travel is not essential not to travel on their status web page. Dublin-Liverpool services appear to be operating as normal at present.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 15, 2015, 02:23:40 PM
P&O’s latest update via twitter (early this morning) states that all Larne – Cairnryan sailings are cancelled until further notice. European Highlander is idle in Larne whereas European Causeway is at the berth in Cairnryan.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 15, 2015, 10:56:10 PM
P&O’s latest update via twitter (early this morning) states that all Larne – Cairnryan sailings are cancelled until further notice. European Highlander is idle in Larne whereas European Causeway is at the berth in Cairnryan.
And they're off!!!! P&O have resumed services to Cairnryan, but are saying they have a large backlog of traffic and advise anyone wishing to travel should call 01304 448877.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 22, 2015, 02:14:22 PM
Norbay has receive new P&O colours.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Davy Jones on May 08, 2015, 09:32:13 PM
I notice European Causeway is at Cammell Lairds and Norbay is currently taking her run on the North Corridor.

Is it just 2 ships on the Liverpool - Dublin run at the moment?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 09, 2015, 12:11:54 AM
Yes unfortunately its just Norbank and European Endeavour (Endeavour covering for Norbay). Not sure what P&O Express is up to. I presume she is in service, or should be soon.

P&O are taking their time with the refits for sure! I expect they are rebranding the fleet. Norbay and Norbank have received nearly full repaints, stern doesn't seem to have been painted, but definitely hull, top sides, and funnel.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: scomacsf8 on May 09, 2015, 07:15:09 AM
Anglia Seaways is on charter to P&O and is running on European Endeavour's timetable while she is on Norbay's sailings.

Express has been in service since late March and is also providing a daily trip to and from Cairnryan during the refit period as well as her usual trip to and from Troon.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 09, 2015, 12:41:30 PM
Thanks Scott.

I was wondering as without the third ship there would be a big enough backlog of traffic. Its a pity Stena Feronia is now 'down under', herself or Stena Nordica, would have fitted the bill nicely.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 05, 2015, 08:53:08 PM
My friend who works on the Express tells me that the crew were officially told today that the craft is leaving P&O after the summer.  Seems they are looking a new ship for Troon.  None of them believe it.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Niall on June 05, 2015, 09:52:16 PM
In my opinion there won't be any fastcraft operating to Troon next year. They'll close the route as it is a loss making service.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on June 05, 2015, 10:59:32 PM
No surprise really. Another UK fast ferry bites the dust...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 06, 2015, 12:27:13 AM
My friend who works on the Express tells me that the crew were officially told today that the craft is leaving P&O after the summer.  Seems they are looking a new ship for Troon.  None of them believe it.
I have also heard similar. The looking for additional craft line seems to be a way of softening the inevitable blow...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on June 08, 2015, 07:23:13 PM
Yeah, P&O said that 5 years ago before the Bilbao closure.  It's amazing how in 5 years the fortunes of Larne have changed so dramatically.
2010- there were 3 ferry companies, 4 routes and 9 vessels.
By the end of 2015- 1 ferry company, 1 route and 2 vessels (still officially confirmed of course).

Larne's loss is Belfast's gain...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 09, 2015, 02:16:02 AM
Very sad news now. Credit where it is due, P&O kept the Express running longer than the HSS. I agree a replacement fast craft is slim. But as for what some people see as the demise of P&O as a good thing, I personally see it as the dawn of a rather sinister monopoly.

I think P&O could redevelop Larne, by attracting back lost operators. If P&O were to dramatically reduce costs (basically undercut Stena), I'm sure they could win back lost ground. People tend to forget P&O do have the distance of Larne - Cairnryan in there favour, and use mainly foreign crews, and have flagged the vessels out to tax havens e.g. Nassau, Bahamas. As for economy, I dare say the European Highlander, and European Causeway is more economical to operate than the Superfasts.

Some may recall, P&O were effected by Norfolk Lines competitive pricing on Dover - Dunkirk, so why P&O couldn't do it in Larne, I really don't know? Besides what is to stop P&O from operating there own Heysham - Larne route? A 'Dublin - Liverpool' style service could help the company not only win back clients to Larne, but also allow the company to compete head on with Birkenhead to Belfast. Perhaps Norbank and Norbay (They fit Larne) could be deployed on this potential new route?       
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 09, 2015, 11:18:40 AM
Very sad news now. Credit where it is due, P&O kept the Express running longer than the HSS. I agree a replacement fast craft is slim. But as for what some people see as the demise of P&O as a good thing, I personally see it as the dawn of a rather sinister monopoly.

I think P&O could redevelop Larne, by attracting back lost operators. If P&O were to dramatically reduce costs (basically undercut Stena), I'm sure they could win back lost ground. People tend to forget P&O do have the distance of Larne - Cairnryan in there favour, and use mainly foreign crews, and have flagged the vessels out to tax havens e.g. Nassau, Bahamas. As for economy, I dare say the European Highlander, and European Causeway is more economical to operate than the Superfasts.

Some may recall, P&O were effected by Norfolk Lines competitive pricing on Dover - Dunkirk, so why P&O couldn't do it in Larne, I really don't know? Besides what is to stop P&O from operating there own Heysham - Larne route? A 'Dublin - Liverpool' style service could help the company not only win back clients to Larne, but also allow the company to compete head on with Birkenhead to Belfast. Perhaps Norbank and Norbay (They fit Larne) could be deployed on this potential new route?     

As a Larne man I would be disappointed if the port was to close (and sadly I can see the Cairnryan route closing whether it is in 5, 10 or 15 years) but surely that's competition and survival of the fittest rather than a "rather sinister monopoly".

I think you are barking up wrong tree about costs.  There are few savings to be made.  Best way that can be achieved is by reducing by far the biggest cost, fuel through fewer sailings.  Given P&O are making serious losses at Larne with lower costs than Stena seems little room to move.

The Norbay/Norbank couldn't fit into Heysham and why would P&O take them off the successful Liverpool route.

We just have to admit Larne is going the way of so many old ferry ports and it's small size and distance away from the bulk of the population compared to Belfast means it ceases to be relevant.

Also please explain who and how they can attract to the port given the limitations of the port, the fact they made it impossible for Stena to return when they wanted to move the Stena Galloway and Stena Caledonia back (late 90s/early 00s?), the fact they refused to spend money altering a berth and drove Seatruck out.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 12, 2015, 10:00:54 PM
Well Stena seems to be the Wal-Mart of the Irish Sea at the moment. Nothing can stop them, and one by one they are killing off the competition, either by acquisition (eg Norfolk Line / DFDS, Celtic Link), or following a very potent expansion policy. Once they have finished off P&O who's next? Irish Ferries (e.g. Ireland - France). 

It really makes my stomach churn to be honest. The prospect of basically 1 operator, serving the whole of Ireland is quite scary.

As for Norbank and Norbay, the ships are money makers for P&O, have an impeccable reliability record, and can handle very harsh weather conditions, and still arrive on time. Surely if possible it would be logical to move them to a Heysham - Larne route. This would allow P&O to compete head on with Stena, and regain lost ground. Newer, larger vessels could then be acquired for Liverpool - Dublin, thus improving the service, and most importantly capacity. 
 

I think a Heysham to Larne route would help P&O make up lost ground, even if its involves acquiring new tonnage. As others have mentioned, Heysham - Belfast has been a game changer for Stena, and if P&O wants to survive they will have to look at tapping into this traffic. Regarding the ports infrastructure, if Norbay, a large vessel at 168m can berth and operate within the port, I don't really see the huge issue. As you indicated yourself Paddy the port is fairly quiet, hence berths will be hardly buzzing with activity. The berth Norbay used while covering I would expect doesn't see much action, as European Highlander and Causeway are as you know use the twin level berths.   

The demise and sale of MFL on Dover to Calais, should also see P&O see an increase in traffic on their vessels on the Dover straits, which should also help the group.
   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 14, 2015, 03:22:53 PM
Well Stena seems to be the Wal-Mart of the Irish Sea at the moment. Nothing can stop them, and one by one they are killing off the competition, either by acquisition (eg Norfolk Line / DFDS, Celtic Link), or following a very potent expansion policy. Once they have finished off P&O who's next? Irish Ferries (e.g. Ireland - France). 

It really makes my stomach churn to be honest. The prospect of basically 1 operator, serving the whole of Ireland is quite scary.

As for Norbank and Norbay, the ships are money makers for P&O, have an impeccable reliability record, and can handle very harsh weather conditions, and still arrive on time. Surely if possible it would be logical to move them to a Heysham - Larne route. This would allow P&O to compete head on with Stena, and regain lost ground. Newer, larger vessels could then be acquired for Liverpool - Dublin, thus improving the service, and most importantly capacity. 
 

I think a Heysham to Larne route would help P&O make up lost ground, even if its involves acquiring new tonnage. As others have mentioned, Heysham - Belfast has been a game changer for Stena, and if P&O wants to survive they will have to look at tapping into this traffic. Regarding the ports infrastructure, if Norbay, a large vessel at 168m can berth and operate within the port, I don't really see the huge issue. As you indicated yourself Paddy the port is fairly quiet, hence berths will be hardly buzzing with activity. The berth Norbay used while covering I would expect doesn't see much action, as European Highlander and Causeway are as you know use the twin level berths.   

The demise and sale of MFL on Dover to Calais, should also see P&O see an increase in traffic on their vessels on the Dover straits, which should also help the group.
   

Precision and Performer are Heysham max at 142m.  Literally nothing any bigger can get in there, as they where built to the maximum dimensions possible.  Norbay/Norbank would not even be close to fitting Heysham, and in any case are hardly a long term solution.  P&O had Larne-Fleetwood but took the decision to pull out and sell to Stena, hell, they even tried to sell Dublin-Liverpool to Stena, but it couldn't get regulatory approval (for obvious reasons).  They could quite conceivably have switched the link to Larne-Heysham had they wanted to, but instead pulled out totally.

If P&O do withdraw from Larne, it will be more because of their own actions than anything else.  Put it this way, Irish Ferries have higher overall volumes to both Wales and France than Stena, a huge global concern with immense resources, but they can still be competed with.  If P&O did withdraw, I'm sure someone else would appear to compete with Stena.  Its not unthinkable for Irish Ferries, for example, to expand into the Northern Irish market - its not like they don't have previous!   P&O had a head start over Stena on the North Channel in many respects.  They own both Larne and Cairnryan for example, yet have made little to no effort to improve facilities and have sat back as Stena attracted their core freight customer down to Belfast.  They have the only 2 new builds built specifically for the North Channel since the 1980's, yet went for a freight orientated ropax design with low passenger capacity instead of seizing the opportunity to grow their market.  Express is woefully under-utilised (even during the summer), and while expensive to operate, seems to have been used more as an afterthought in recent years rather than an ace card since the HSS's withdrawal.  Contrast that with IF's continued use of the Swift on the central corridor.

Larne could have been a hub for P&O quite easily, while they can't get the larger ships in like Stena can at Belfast (a facility they do not own but which is provided by Belfast Harbour), they can still get something in of decent size, and certainly bigger than what the likes of what Heysham can handle.  Larne was for a long time the de facto port in Northern Ireland for ferry traffic, however, little seems to have been done to keep things that way.  More and more of what used to be harbour land is being given over to retail and leisure projects.  It is no secret that Stena have invested more than what they earn from the Irish Sea and are taking a long term view, P&O don't seem to have the appetite for this.  It is interesting that you mention the Stena takeover of Celtic Link - this is the route that P&O abandoned because they could not make it profitable after all, yet a small startup seemingly turned its fortunes around!  It could have been so different.  As much as anything else, that seems to highlight the problems with P&O for me.  Hull-Rotterdam (Pride of Hull/Rotterdam) and Dover-Calais (the spirits) have got their expensive European built "showpiece" ships, the Irish Sea routes have got a bunch of second hand tonnage not really needed or wanted elsewhere and a pair of (all be it well designed and versatile) glorified freighters dressed up as passenger ferries.  European Ambassador could have run on the French run if P&O had wanted her to - a startup operation was able to find a vessel on the charter market to turn the route around after all, not all that long after P&O abandoned the route, yet a company the size of P&O with all their resources was unable to?  Likewise, the Fleetwood "problem" could have been solved with a bit of effort (remember Seatruck's Larne-Heysham route for example, P&O could have used those slots) and the willingness to charter in suitable tonnage (as Stena now have), but they took the easy fast cash instead.  Is it that inconceivable that another pair of ships similar to European Ambassador could have been ordered to run to Liverpool or similar?  Likewise, the one ship P&O built specifically for Liverpool to Dublin was sold to Stena, who operated it in competition with P&O's Dublin route!

As for the demise of MFL, I can see the opposite happening.  DFDS are potentially going to have 7 vessels sailing on the Dover Strait, all but one (Malo Seaways) of which was built specifically for operating there - 2 of those vessels are considered by many as the best passenger ferries operating to Calais as well.  DFDS can offer something that P&O can't IMHO as well - a comprehensive route network covering not just continental Europe but also Scandinavia, plus they have agreements in place with Stena as well for the Irish Sea for example.  Eurotunnel (who have the largest market share) are going to be very bullish as well I would imagine, and margins could continue to be very pressured.  The demise of MFL has strengthened DFDS, not P&O, who now have a strong competitor who can match them on frequency for the first time since Sealink operated to Calais.  DFDS (excluding Calais Seaways) have a very modern fleet operating on the strait, P&O rely heavily on the 3 prides - although 2 where extensively rebuilt 13 years ago, are 23 year old ships operating on the most intensive route of all - and incidentally are just 5 years younger than Pride of Dover/Calais.  Likewise, Norbay and Norbank are just a year younger.  It will be interesting to see if P&O get their chequebook out in the next couple of years, and if so, what they decide to invest in and for where.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on June 14, 2015, 04:38:15 PM
Well said Steven and it matches what I've said about the decline of Larne under P&O's complacent watch.
Express is currently scheduled to continue operating until 30th September, but given the strong rumours, I can honestly see P&O pulling the plug in early September.

September seems a popular month for route closures!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 14, 2015, 11:10:08 PM
There is a pull for freight traffic to Dublin at the expense of all other Irish routes so I can't see P&O adding tonnage at Larne.  Lots of discussion online that they might switch the European Causeway to Troon for a roundtrip each day.  That's the most they will do for Troon I would say.

I'm afraid the suggestion of using the Norbay and Norbank on a Heysham route doesn't work at any level.

As for Larne generally, well traffic just seems to  fall each year now.  How far can it slide?  My guess is that the longest the port can survive is to the end of the useful lifespan of the current ships.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 14, 2015, 11:25:27 PM
There is a pull for freight traffic to Dublin at the expense of all other Irish routes so I can't see P&O adding tonnage at Larne.  Lots of discussion online that they might switch the European Causeway to Troon for a roundtrip each day.  That's the most they will do for Troon I would say.

I'm afraid the suggestion of using the Norbay and Norbank on a Heysham route doesn't work at any level.

As for Larne generally, well traffic just seems to  fall each year now.  How far can it slide?  My guess is that the longest the port can survive is to the end of the useful lifespan of the current ships.
I wouldn't at all be surprised to eventually see the current ships switched to Dublin to replace Norbay and Norbank personally, once retrofitted with some cabin accommodation.  Im really not convinced they could make a single round trip on Causeway work - thats up to 4 hours each way plus the time in port, more or less removing her totally from Cairnryan half the day with no real ability to exploit any passenger trade either.  As mentioned before, there is also the lack of marshalling space at Troon with no real potential to expand it.  I did see mention that CalMac's Isle of Lewis had berthing trials at Troon recently though, some have suggested this could be related.  P&O are caught in a bit of a catch 22 - volumes would appear not to be high enough for the current number of trips to Cairnryan.  However, if they reduce this they risk annoying the customers they have.  Theres also the shift to Dublin which is expected to continue.  More and more businesses in the North are having deliveries routed through Dublin port, especially those originating in England.  Liverpool-Belfast is the exception really, with no figures available for the Heysham routes unfortunately.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 14, 2015, 11:54:20 PM
There is a pull for freight traffic to Dublin at the expense of all other Irish routes so I can't see P&O adding tonnage at Larne.  Lots of discussion online that they might switch the European Causeway to Troon for a roundtrip each day.  That's the most they will do for Troon I would say.

I'm afraid the suggestion of using the Norbay and Norbank on a Heysham route doesn't work at any level.

As for Larne generally, well traffic just seems to  fall each year now.  How far can it slide?  My guess is that the longest the port can survive is to the end of the useful lifespan of the current ships.
I wouldn't at all be surprised to eventually see the current ships switched to Dublin to replace Norbay and Norbank personally, once retrofitted with some cabin accommodation.  Im really not convinced they could make a single round trip on Causeway work - thats up to 4 hours each way plus the time in port, more or less removing her totally from Cairnryan half the day with no real ability to exploit any passenger trade either.  As mentioned before, there is also the lack of marshalling space at Troon with no real potential to expand it.  I did see mention that CalMac's Isle of Lewis had berthing trials at Troon recently though, some have suggested this could be related.  P&O are caught in a bit of a catch 22 - volumes would appear not to be high enough for the current number of trips to Cairnryan.  However, if they reduce this they risk annoying the customers they have.  Theres also the shift to Dublin which is expected to continue.  More and more businesses in the North are having deliveries routed through Dublin port, especially those originating in England.  Liverpool-Belfast is the exception really, with no figures available for the Heysham routes unfortunately.

There is a lot of sense in your comments. 

I have always felt that Troon has potential but the potential can never be properly realised as stressing the USPs would simply mean undermining Cairnryan!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 15, 2015, 12:11:34 AM
You raise some very valid points Steven. One thing I find very interesting is how Stena were able to go from having only one low capacity vessel, Stena Caledonia (850 LM), and a dated port, to having the complete opposite in the space of 6 years! Quite a turnaround. I'm not saying this is a bad thing, it shows commitment to the route. Acquisition raises my eyebrows of so many operators in such a short time.

As for P&O's slow way of doing things, that's not always a bad thing. The hare and tortoise comes to mind. The best way to describe P&O at the minute is 'down, but not out'. I think P&O are considering their options carefully.

I know the general thought amongst the forum is the Larne is going to be Fleetwood II, and P&O are going to sit back and wait till the sums are so bad, they can justify closure. I personally cant see this happening. Lets remember P&O own the Port of Larne and Cairnryan. The developments at Cairnryan have put P&O back a penny or two. Surely if they were going to pull the plug they wouldn't have installed a state of the art linkspan? Why upgrade the European Highlander & European Causeway internally & externally? (If you want my opinion, they look a hell of a lot cleaner than Stena Nordica!).

If P&O were going to walk away from Larne they probably wouldn't have invested like this. They would have just avoided doing this, and took the cost effective option - sell the fleet, and literally walk off. P&O cant really do this as they own the Port of Larne, and Cairnryan. I'm sure a buyer wouldn't be biting their hand off. Letting the rot set in at Larne wouldn't be good for the P&O Group in general, and could be another nail in the coffin so to speak.

Your right Steven when you say the fleet isn't the newest, but generally P&O look after their ships very well. European Highlander and Causeway appear to have aged much better than the Stena Nordica, and as for Norbank, Norbay, Pride of Bruges, Pride of York, Pride of Rotterdam, and Pride of Hull, their reliability record speaks for themselves.... impressive. Even on Dover to Calais when you take the 24/7 operations the ships are doing, they are still going strong for 20+, and still look tidy enough.

Like it or lump it, P&O will have to renew the fleet in the next few years. How they are going to undertake this is going to be interesting. Will they do it on the cheap and toddle off to China or South Korea and get a handful of ships built, in a similar way to how Stena and DFDS have done it in previous years, or will they 'flash the cash' (like they tend to do every 20 years or so!) and go to a Northern European yard like they did with the 'Spirits'. 
 

 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 15, 2015, 02:38:57 PM
It must be remembered that P&O and Stena are very differently funded.

Stena Line is a part of the very large and profitable Stena group so they fund things that they see as being of long term strategic importance.

P&O is managed as very much kept separate from their Dubai Ports ownership.  They also have a huge pension shortfall so investment is near impossible.

Their local investment has actually been fairly minimal. Cairnryan was cheapest possible investment to keep the port operational and the ship refits were a few years ago.

To me there are a few reasons why Stena have taken so much freight from P&O on North Channel.  The Superfasts can accommodate a lot of traffic the previous ships could not, plus Belfast has a hub effect Larne does not.

The 17 million loss recorded by P&O's Irish Sea business unit in the last accounts I seen speaks volumes of the difficulty.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 15, 2015, 06:10:36 PM
I dare say your figures are accurate Paddy, and how P&O is going to deal with the problem is something I think they are thinking hard about. In the Larne Times, in a statement by P&O, they indicated they were looking to replace the Express.

“We continue to strive to provide an outstanding service to our customers and to grow our business in what continues to be a very competitive market.”

When asked what type of craft the company would be seeking to replace the Express, P&O stated: “In a highly competitive market, this is commercially sensitive.

“P&O Ferries is in the process of evaluating alternative tonnage for 2016 and we will update our staff and in turn our customers when we are in a position to do so.”

I think P&O recognise the challenge, and are 'evaluating' what to do. I personally cant see them axing Larne. I'm sure DP World would move in to help if need be. P&O have amassed millions over the years, and not long ago blew £270 million on the mighty Spirit of Britain, and Spirit of France. I'm sure they have a bit more under the mattress so to speak. But I do agree this 'sit back' approach hasn't got P&O anywhere, and as you indicate lost them a lot. Though look at how quickly Stena turned the tide. 1 clapped out vessel (half the size of the European Highlander alone!) and a dated port. I think the real question is can P&O do the same, and lets face it they have a much easier job than Stena had to undertake.

The main reason why P&O scrapped Portsmouth - Blibao was because they couldn't make it work. The Pride of Bilbao was a bit of a gas guzzler, and the crossing time, poor freight capacity ect really meant there was no flexibility. Larne is different in that respect, the crossing time is much shorter, the vessels are generally much cheaper to run and have the ability to swallow up as much freight as the Superfasts. Larne also has the standard berth sitting idle (used by Norbay), why not put it to use? I still think a Heysham - Larne route by P&O could work, with the right vessels, high freight capacity, with low running costs. Option B, (if possible) a new berth at Heysham similar to Lough Ryan, where P&O can bring in larger vessels, like European Highlander or European Causeway. I'm sure commercially this would work well, and give Larne a boost.   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 15, 2015, 08:14:26 PM
The only way both Stena and P&O can turn their N Channel operations around is by reducing the frequency.

On a 12-month basis both North Channel operators are averaging about 40 freight units per sailing and have dismal passenger numbers for much of the year.  In reality both operators should be down to about 4 roundtrips per day.

For info, I would say that if P&O were looking at a NW England service they would be better looking at Liverpool - Larne again.  (Though remember it didn't work before).  Heysham is probably at saturation point with N.Ireland services with up to 4 sailings a day.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 15, 2015, 08:19:52 PM

The main reason why P&O scrapped Portsmouth - Blibao was because they couldn't make it work. The Pride of Bilbao was a bit of a gas guzzler, and the crossing time, poor freight capacity ect really meant there was no flexibility. Larne is different in that respect, the crossing time is much shorter, the vessels are generally much cheaper to run and have the ability to swallow up as much freight as the Superfasts. Larne also has the standard berth sitting idle (used by Norbay), why not put it to use? I still think a Heysham - Larne route by P&O could work, with the right vessels, high freight capacity, with low running costs. Option B, (if possible) a new berth at Heysham similar to Lough Ryan, where P&O can bring in larger vessels, like European Highlander or European Causeway. I'm sure commercially this would work well, and give Larne a boost.

Bilbao shut as the ship was at the end of it's life and no replacement was economical. Bilbao was making a marginal profit as far as I recall and that's why it remained open after the other Portsmouth routes closed.

The odd bit in P&O's comments in the Larne Times was that they are evaluating options.  That's clearly nonsense.  If you are committed to a route you have a plan they just aren't prepared to tell the world yet.  If the Causeway is going to operate a roundtrip to Troon this will remove say 2 of her Cairnyan roundtrips so we could be looking at only 4 to 5 Cairnryan - Larne sailings per day which would be very commercially sensitive and something Stena would love to know.

That theory works - think about it.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on June 15, 2015, 09:34:45 PM
Just to clarify, Stena were not a one ship operation on the North Channel, the HSS Voyager and Stena Navigator also worked alongside the Caledonia before the Superfasts arrived.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 17, 2015, 01:55:19 AM
I dare say your figures are accurate Paddy, and how P&O is going to deal with the problem is something I think they are thinking hard about. In the Larne Times, in a statement by P&O, they indicated they were looking to replace the Express.

“We continue to strive to provide an outstanding service to our customers and to grow our business in what continues to be a very competitive market.”

When asked what type of craft the company would be seeking to replace the Express, P&O stated: “In a highly competitive market, this is commercially sensitive.

“P&O Ferries is in the process of evaluating alternative tonnage for 2016 and we will update our staff and in turn our customers when we are in a position to do so.”

I think P&O recognise the challenge, and are 'evaluating' what to do. I personally cant see them axing Larne. I'm sure DP World would move in to help if need be. P&O have amassed millions over the years, and not long ago blew £270 million on the mighty Spirit of Britain, and Spirit of France. I'm sure they have a bit more under the mattress so to speak. But I do agree this 'sit back' approach hasn't got P&O anywhere, and as you indicate lost them a lot. Though look at how quickly Stena turned the tide. 1 clapped out vessel (half the size of the European Highlander alone!) and a dated port. I think the real question is can P&O do the same, and lets face it they have a much easier job than Stena had to undertake.

The main reason why P&O scrapped Portsmouth - Blibao was because they couldn't make it work. The Pride of Bilbao was a bit of a gas guzzler, and the crossing time, poor freight capacity ect really meant there was no flexibility. Larne is different in that respect, the crossing time is much shorter, the vessels are generally much cheaper to run and have the ability to swallow up as much freight as the Superfasts. Larne also has the standard berth sitting idle (used by Norbay), why not put it to use? I still think a Heysham - Larne route by P&O could work, with the right vessels, high freight capacity, with low running costs. Option B, (if possible) a new berth at Heysham similar to Lough Ryan, where P&O can bring in larger vessels, like European Highlander or European Causeway. I'm sure commercially this would work well, and give Larne a boost.

I'd say P&O have a much harder task than Stena in many ways!  For a start, both ports (and also Troon) severely restrict the size of vessel able to use them.  For instance, neither a Visentini like Stena Lagan or one of the Superfast's will fit in Larne - in the case of the Superfasts this isn't even down to the berths, they simply will not fit in the port.  Secondly, Stena can offer services right in to Belfast - literally 5 minutes from the motorway network and with a direct route to the centre of population - unlike GB, the majority of people live in and around one city.  Likewise, many of the distribution centres are right on the doorstep of Stena's facilities.  Even with the road improvements to Larne, Stena still have better access to the road network.  Thirdly, if P&O where to start a totally new service they need to not only get access to the right ports at the right times (something Stena already have), but also need to find suitable tonnage at the right price and market the operation from scratch, while not cannibalising their existing route(s).

I'm inclined to agree with PaddyL here, and can see Causeway making the trip to Troon.  Personally I think it would be a big risk, but something does need to be done about load factors in the North Channel.  A service to Troon could give P&O the upper hand regarding closeness to the population centres of Scotland, however this would be at the very real risk of taking trade from Cairnryan.  There's also the question of cabins too, and the marshalling space at Troon.   Switching one of the existing ships to Troon would  fit with P&O's apparent "investment" model on the Irish Sea, and could boost load factors at Cairnryan.  However there is the additional costs of running a vessel to Troon to be factored in as well - will customers be prepared to pay more rather than drive instead (especially considering the overall time taken for the journey would be similar).  It's a big risk IMO, but perhaps one P&O are prepared to take in view of disappointing results, rather than just preserving the status quo.

As GiftGrub rightly pointed out, Stena went from a 3 ship to a 2 ship operation.  I wouldn't call either Stena Caledonia or Stena Navigator clapped out - especially given both are still in regular service and where extensively refitted not so long before the Superfasts arrived!  Yes they lacked freight capacity, but the Superfasts addressed this.  P&O failed to capitalise on their advantage while they had it, and perhaps are now paying the price.  As for Stena turning around the service in just a few years, this is far from the truth.  The replacement of the facilities at Stranraer was on the cards for some time.  The restrictions on vessel size at Stranraer effectively tied Stena's hands regarding vessel deployment - now it is P&O who have their hands tied.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: gezdub on June 17, 2015, 12:27:14 PM
   Steven, a tiny point, bit it does cause confusion, sorry
the word "were" ..  i.e. "they were used"   -indicates the past tense
the word "where".. i.e. "where do they sail from" .. indicates a location

it just clarifies which meaning you are using.. Thanks, i do enjoy your posts!

;-)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 17, 2015, 11:43:07 PM
Yes the Stena Navigator (1984) and Stena Caledonia (1981) were in reasonable condition, but realistically were basically from another era, and in terms of competing with the European Highlander, and European Causeway, they were 'clapped out'.

Put it this way, if P&O were operating the Pride of Free Enterprise (1980) on Larne - Cairnryan in 2010 they'd be a bit of laughing stock. Remember the Pride of Rathlin (1972 / 1986), was pensioned off in 2000! Twelve long years before the Stena Caledonia and Stena Navigator. 

I still think P&O can turn the tide. The company aren't exactly novices in the ferry industry. They have very good ships, very good crews, and are generally cheaper than Stena in terms of pricing, and are reliable. I would say they provide good value for money overall. Dublin to Liverpool is one of P&O's successes, and like or not they did topple the Norfolk Line / DFDS competition. 

I wouldn't say their hands are tied either. With the right (i) investment, (ii) routes, (iii) crossing frequency, and (iv) prices, they could improve, perhaps not overnight, but definitely improve the situation. As you said yourself Steven a lot of freight is being moved through Heysham. If P&O had their own berth in the port, I'm sure they could work something, or better still a facility similar to Lough Ryan. The bottom line is if P&O are serious about the ferry industry, they'd be fools to just take the lazy option and not develop a proper plan of action.

I can see the theme on the forum is that P&O's 'retrenchment' policy of 2004 is still alive and well. I don't think this is the case. They are frugal, and cautious, but certainly are looking to a solution. I think the only real long term is to tap into the freight from Northern Britain, like Stena & Seatruck have done at Heysham.

I'm not sure about this one, but theoretically if P&O wanted to 'buy' Seatruck could they? It would make sense as Seatruck are competing with P&O on Dublin - Liverpool, and co-operation rather than competition isn't always a bad thing. A P&O Seatruck alliance could give Seatruck access to European markets through P&O North Sea, and P&O the much needed boost on the Irish Sea.




   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 18, 2015, 01:11:43 PM
TC, radical expansion will only kill Larne in current market.  Look at the figures, there is no way any operator can add more capacity from Northern Ireland, there simply isn't a market for it.

Reliable rumour around Larne is that Troon is not closing.  Instead the European Causeway will be transferred to operate 2 roundtrips per day and the European Highlander will operate 4 roundtrips per day on the Cairnryan route.

This idea is not without commercial and operational risks but is surely a very valiant effort to maximise resources and take traffic back from Stena?

I think it might just work and I hope so!

There seems a feeling that talking honestly about P&O's problems and realistically about the market is being negative, I for one hope this plan works for P&O.  Seems like very smart thinking.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on June 18, 2015, 07:55:36 PM
Can the European Causeway or Highland ACTUALLY FIT Troon?!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on June 18, 2015, 08:12:03 PM
Can the European Causeway or Highland ACTUALLY FIT Troon?!

I am told by P&O contacts that the slightly shorter Causeway at least can.

The Norbay managed berthing trials there after all.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steam Packet on June 18, 2015, 08:37:10 PM
Both European Causeway & Highlander should fit, as the Norbay Trials were a success, and she is longer, with a deeper draught, though just as wide. However they will need to have a stern ramp added to be able to use the Troon Linkspan. If P&O fitted the ramp to Express themselves, they could possibly have it removed and fitted to European Causeway. Turnaround times may also need to be slightly increased, as Troon doesn't have a double-deck linkspan.

However, I think this is an incredibly positive move by P&O. I'm pleased that Troon will remain an active Ferry Port, and I really hope P&O take advantage of the obvious benefits of Troon, especially with a year round passenger and freight service now available.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 19, 2015, 01:22:03 AM
Causeway fits Troon.  Norbay has conducted berthing trials, but that doesn't mean she could necessarily regularly operate to there - likewise for Highlander.  The ABP website states max length at the ferry quay as being 160m - Causeway slips just under this, whereas Highlander is 2.7m over this.  Both vessels have a draft of 5.5m which is .1m over normal limits according to the figures on the ABP website, but much less than the 8.6m depth of the water. 

Regarding loading/unloading, perhaps the port would invest in an improved linkspan/berth if guaranteed a ferry service going forward.  It wouldn't be the first time such a thing has happened!  I should stress i feel, that there is nothing official to say that a conventional service will even operate to Troon next year, never mind the actual ship.  However, the speculation is very strong that this may be the case.  Certainly the wording of P&O's comments to Larne Times would indicate that the route will not be served by a fast ferry going forward.

Yes the Stena Navigator (1984) and Stena Caledonia (1981) were in reasonable condition, but realistically were basically from another era, and in terms of competing with the European Highlander, and European Causeway, they were 'clapped out'.

Put it this way, if P&O were operating the Pride of Free Enterprise (1980) on Larne - Cairnryan in 2010 they'd be a bit of laughing stock. Remember the Pride of Rathlin (1972 / 1986), was pensioned off in 2000! Twelve long years before the Stena Caledonia and Stena Navigator. 

I still think P&O can turn the tide. The company aren't exactly novices in the ferry industry. They have very good ships, very good crews, and are generally cheaper than Stena in terms of pricing, and are reliable. I would say they provide good value for money overall. Dublin to Liverpool is one of P&O's successes, and like or not they did topple the Norfolk Line / DFDS competition. 

I wouldn't say their hands are tied either. With the right (i) investment, (ii) routes, (iii) crossing frequency, and (iv) prices, they could improve, perhaps not overnight, but definitely improve the situation. As you said yourself Steven a lot of freight is being moved through Heysham. If P&O had their own berth in the port, I'm sure they could work something, or better still a facility similar to Lough Ryan. The bottom line is if P&O are serious about the ferry industry, they'd be fools to just take the lazy option and not develop a proper plan of action.

I can see the theme on the forum is that P&O's 'retrenchment' policy of 2004 is still alive and well. I don't think this is the case. They are frugal, and cautious, but certainly are looking to a solution. I think the only real long term is to tap into the freight from Northern Britain, like Stena & Seatruck have done at Heysham.

I'm not sure about this one, but theoretically if P&O wanted to 'buy' Seatruck could they? It would make sense as Seatruck are competing with P&O on Dublin - Liverpool, and co-operation rather than competition isn't always a bad thing. A P&O Seatruck alliance could give Seatruck access to European markets through P&O North Sea, and P&O the much needed boost on the Irish Sea.
   

TC, we could argue all year about the merits and pitfalls of previous vessels and get nowhere.  Its not really appropriate for this thread to be honest - however, Stena Navigator was the same age as Pride of Rathlin when retired from the Stena fleet - the amount of her interior retained by her new operator and the condition it was in speaks volumes for how good condition the ship was in - along with Caledonia she was comprehensively refitted in 2009 and continually thereafter.  Overall age isn't really a factor if a ship is maintained and updated anyway (which both Caledonia and Navigator where).  One of the most problematic vessels on the North Channel of recent times was Jetliner - and she was brand new!  As I have already said, Stena had their hands tied by the constraints at Stranraer - there was no point in building new ships to the dimensions of Stranraer when they where always moving up the Loch in just a few years (possibly before such ships would have been completed anyway).  Pride of York and Pride of Bruges are now the same age as Stena Navigator was when she was withdrawn, yet no plan for their replacement seems to have been made (yet?).

Seatruck are owned by the clipper group, which is itself a very large shipping concern.  Even if they did want to sell up (and there is nothing to indicate that they do not wish to hold on to Seatruck), any buyer would have to pay handsomely. 

Heysham is not really that big a port, and is constrained inside a harbour.  I doubt there would be the space to put a dedicated berth for starters, and the size and draft limits would also severely restrict the vessels which could be used. As Paddy says, Heysham is probably at Saturation point anyway, hence the withdrawal of Seatruck's Belfast service.

For the record, in my experience where there is any significant difference in pricing Stena are cheaper than P&O on the North Channel.  Certainly any time I have priced a trip to Scotland, either by car or foot, Stena have come out cheaper (even when excluding the additional costs of traveling up to Larne).  Having all that spare passenger capacity means they are able to run regular special offers P&O can only dream off (the £10 day trip to Glasgow for example) as well.

The real problem here is that P&O now have a smaller slice of a continually shrinking pie on the North Channel.  By running one of their ships closer to Glasgow they could turn one of their weaknesses (the size of their ships) into a strength, by effectively doing on the Scottish side what Stena have done on the Northern Irish side (moved closer to the destination/departure point).  Like Paddy, I'd like to see P&O try this - if nothing else it should shake up the market a little and give customers another option.  However, it would be a total reversal of the current car and passenger service with a main focus on freight.  The losses P&O are experiencing on the Irish Sea are concerning (for perspective, Stena Feronia sold for around €23m, P&O's £17m loss is equivalent to €23.7m), and will surely influence any investment decision.  As Paddy says, the funding structure of P&O ferries and of Stena Line is totally different, with Stena able to secure funding with a focus on the long term (the HSS project is another example), rather than relatively short term results like most businesses. Yes P&O splashed out on Spirit of Britain and Spirit of France, but that is the exception, and they are two ships which will be worked exceptionally hard and which have been designed to maximise revenue on the very short crossing.  Up to 2000 passengers per trip, 10 trips a day, 360 days a year, PER SHIP adds up to a lot of potential revenue, never mind the volumes of freight carried.  With those numbers, its not so hard for a business to justify investment.  Alas, those are figures we can only dream of on the North Channel.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 29, 2015, 10:29:22 AM
From NIFerrySite
Quote
Larne to Troon vessel leaving for a new career in Scandinavia

Shippax information have published the news that the current Larne to Troon vessel HSC Express has been sold to a company called Nordic HSC, based in Sweden.  Current owners Buquebus had been looking for a buyer following P&O's decision not to renew their long running charter for the craft.

It is intended that Express will operate between the island of Gotland and the Swedish mainland.  She will be delivered to the now owners next autumn, when she will undergo a refit and crew familiarisation prior to entering service in summer 2016.  It is intended that she will be registered in Sweden, and will employ Swedish officers.
www.niferrysite.co.uk/pos-express-sold-for-operation-in-the-baltic/ (http://www.niferrysite.co.uk/pos-express-sold-for-operation-in-the-baltic/)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on June 29, 2015, 07:43:07 PM
Thanks Steven. So that's that then, the big British and Irish fast ferries will be cut down to five from the Autumn. What a change from 15 years ago; you can really count them on one hand now! 2000 was also when the Express joined the P&O fleet at Portsmouth, before transferring to Larne in 2005.
The question is what next for the North Channel: 2 ships operating 4-5 sailings a day between Cairnryan and Larne; or 1 ship operating Cairnryan route on 4-5 sailings, and the other vessel operating split sailings between Cairnryan and Troon?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 30, 2015, 12:29:16 PM
Due to the strike action in Calais, P&O are currently using the Boulogne hub port.  Pride of Burgundy is there, and Pride of Canterbury is destined for there with a full load.  Its been a while, though this will be the first time Boulogne Hub Port has been used by P&O commercially.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 30, 2015, 06:06:12 PM
P&O are operating a no-frills one way Dover-Boulogne service in order to clear the backlog in the UK.  The Dsrwins and Burgundy have been operating it so far, but spirit of France appears to be undergoing trials.  The link span at Boulogne hub port is a rather snazzy moveable affair.  Phase 3 of operation stack is in operation, I believe for the first time ever!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 30, 2015, 10:02:57 PM
We must have inspired P&O Steven!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 30, 2015, 10:41:27 PM
We must have inspired P&O Steven!
I am led to believe it may have been P&O who where behind the reactivation of the port facilities.  Seems at least someone was able to think ahead to when the inevitable happened!  Someone at Channel House will be getting a pat on the back ;). 

Helen Deeble has posted a very strongly worded letter.  I'll pop it up here if I can find it again!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 30, 2015, 11:13:12 PM
I'm surprised P&O sent the Spirit of France to Boulogne. I thought strong possibility the Kent, Canterbury, and Burgundy, to help take the edge of the crisis, but one of the Spirits without trials! I salute the crew for a job well done.

Its nice to see P&O thinking outside the box  :D 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 30, 2015, 11:22:01 PM
I would imagine P&O Dover are getting some horrid abuse. Unfortunately people probably don't understand P&O cant really do much when strikes in France are involved, and their only port has been taken captive! DFDS are fortunate enough to have Dunkirk, so in one respect its happy days for them, while the management at P&O are having palpitations.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 01, 2015, 09:55:21 PM
I would imagine P&O Dover are getting some horrid abuse. Unfortunately people probably don't understand P&O cant really do much when strikes in France are involved, and their only port has been taken captive! DFDS are fortunate enough to have Dunkirk, so in one respect its happy days for them, while the management at P&O are having palpitations.
Yes, some of the comments on Twitter aimed at P&O have been way out of order!

A one way freight service ran today using the usual P&O Calais ships to Boulogne.  Malo Seaways and the MFL ships are the only ones not running, with Calais Seaways running to Dunkerque.  However, the union leader has said that they will step-up their actions tomorrow with the planned handover of the ships at midnight. They have not ruled out (further) breaches of security, and there have been rumours that the Rodin and Berlioz have been sabotaged by their crews!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Juju62 on July 03, 2015, 11:46:26 AM
 I live Calais and I can tell you that the ferry is still in exellent condition ... except marine ark that are deployed
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 19, 2015, 01:13:07 AM
P&O have moved to increase capacity to Calais (considering they are currently the only operator to the port!) by reactivating European Seaway.  She is already in Dover, and it's speculated she will enter service in the next few days.  It is not yet know in what mode she will operate (stern only loading?), as her upper bow vehicle deck door was welded shut due to damage done during her wind charter work.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on July 20, 2015, 06:00:23 PM
It's good to see her being slowly brought back into service again.  Any news on Troon post 30th Sept?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on July 20, 2015, 07:38:50 PM
I agree, its good to see the European Seaway back in action. It was quite a depressing sight seeing her laid up in Tilbury, going the same way as the Pride of Dover.

Re: Larne - Troon, I'd say P&O are holding their cards very close to their chest. We probably wont hear anything for a good while as P&O are probably evaluating if they can get away with only using European Highlander & European Causeway to maintain the link, or looking at the second hand market / charter.

I'm not sure if / when Cotentin (Stena Baltica) would come available, but she wouldn't be a bad pick. She has good freight capacity, and reasonable passenger capacity (200). Alternatively, Patria Seaways, sister to the former Stena Challenger, wouldn't be bad either. Though she is advancing in age (23).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 26, 2015, 01:18:27 AM
I forgot to update here, but P&O have published the Larne - Cairnryan timetable until the end of next year, and it shows a more or less unchanged 2 ship service using European Causeway and European Highlanderr.  This makes it extremely unlikely that either ship will operate to Troon next year.  With P&O having more or less ruled out a fast craft, the future of Troon looks extremely uncertain.  Having spoken to some people who have travelled on the Troon service, it appears Express has been very quiet this month with little car traffic.  There seems to be little passenger and car traffic left to Troon, and a freight service will need to be built almost from scratch (risking cannibalising Cairnryan freight).  There is still a chance of course, but it is hard to see were P&O will get a ship from, or sufficient traffic.

Its not a fleet movement, but I'm told European Endeavour is looking very tired inside these days (in addition to her exterior condition).  One friend who was on her recently went so far as to describe her as filthy inside, with dirty carpets and seats.  Not exactly what you would expect if they are trying to build up passenger traffic!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on August 26, 2015, 07:33:34 PM
Thanks for posting this Steven and I totally agree with you. I was reading a recent article which said the agreement between P&O and ABP will end in October anyway, so without a ship and little traffic I can't see it being renewed.  Given all of this, I think its inevitable that the Troon-Larne route will close after nearly 15 years of operation. Thus leaving Larne with 1 ferry company, 1 route and 2 ships, down from 3 ferry companies, 4 routes and 9 ships, 5 years ago- a shadow of it's former self.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: IFPete on August 28, 2015, 08:42:26 AM
I travelled on the express from Larne to Troon on wednesday morning of last week,

The sailing was quiet with about 50 cars a few motor bikes.

The crew told me the express was busy at weekends.

It was great to arrive in Troon and avoid the twisty road up from Cairnryan i have withnessed
accidents on over the years.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 28, 2015, 10:48:34 PM
Its not a fleet movement, but I'm told European Endeavour is looking very tired inside these days (in addition to her exterior condition).  One friend who was on her recently went so far as to describe her as filthy inside, with dirty carpets and seats.  Not exactly what you would expect if they are trying to build up passenger traffic!

Scott Mackey has published some internal pics of European Endeavour here if anyone is interested.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmackey/sets/72157632007090576

I travelled on the express from Larne to Troon on wednesday morning of last week,

The sailing was quiet with about 50 cars a few motor bikes.

The crew told me the express was busy at weekends.

It was great to arrive in Troon and avoid the twisty road up from Cairnryan i have withnessed
accidents on over the years.

A seasonal service which is busy at weekends isn't enough unfortunately.  The economics of running a fast craft these days are difficult to make work at the best of times.  I'd say much of the trade which would previously have used the service has gone to the airlines now.  I have heard that a large proportion of the passengers are day trippers as well - a conventional service will totally kill off that trade given the crossing time. 

The A77 coast road (like the A75 towards the border) has received improvements in recent years.  Certainly its not as bad as it used to be (and a lovely scenic drive in the right weather), though not perfect.  Unfortunately its the idiots using the roads which are often the problem, rather than the roads themselves.

Thanks for posting this Steven and I totally agree with you. I was reading a recent article which said the agreement between P&O and ABP will end in October anyway, so without a ship and little traffic I can't see it being renewed.  Given all of this, I think its inevitable that the Troon-Larne route will close after nearly 15 years of operation. Thus leaving Larne with 1 ferry company, 1 route and 2 ships, down from 3 ferry companies, 4 routes and 9 ships, 5 years ago- a shadow of it's former self.

Indeed.  Its hard to believe people questioned Stena's decision to move down to Belfast back in the day, but it was a bit of a gamble.  Belfast has grown whilst Larne has become a shadow of its former self, though its not hard to see why Belfast has become so successful when you consider the vast majority of the population live (and work, shop, etc) in the area.  Stena now have 7 modern ships operating to 3 destinations from purpose built facilities, leaving from a major distribution and logistics hub 5 minutes off the motorway network.  While the Belfast Harbour Commissioners have invested heavily in the past 25 years (Stena's Scotland operation is in its second purpose built terminal for example, but there was also the investment in VT1 and VT2 as well), Larne (and P&O) simply hasn't.  The port is still very recognisable as the same facility used by Sealink, P&O, and Pandoro all those years ago.  The gradual shift to Dublin has only made maters worse of course.

I have also heard that the Troon port agreement is due to expire.  The timing is all rather tidy if you ask me!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: IFPete on August 30, 2015, 01:32:07 PM
I understand the officers and the deck crew on the express have been offered work on other P&O Vessels,

The Cabin staff are awaiting their feith in a few weeks,
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: sealink on August 31, 2015, 10:46:42 AM
I know all to well that nothing stays the same but i have such happy memories over the years taking the " boat train " to Larne to go on summer holidays. Travelling over the years on the TT FEIV, Europic and Ionic ferries. Sealink ferries Antrim and Ailsa Princess. Darnia, Galloway, St David. P&O Rathlin and Ailsa ( which i adored ) and of course the Stena Antrim. I remember the port before the main terminal being built. Walking up the car ramp to board the Galloway Princess was exciting and even better was walking up the gangway into the FEIV. The modern ferry and all the fancy terminals and covered walkways are the future but i look back on the good old days of ferry travel with a smile.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 01, 2015, 11:56:55 PM
I understand the officers and the deck crew on the express have been offered work on other P&O Vessels,

The Cabin staff are awaiting their feith in a few weeks,
AFAIK, the "cabin staff" are all local seasonal's anyway.  I doubt they would be happy with the wages P&O pay their foreign nationals on the other Larne ships in any case.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 04, 2015, 04:03:47 PM
Just been on the European Endeavour, 04/09/15. I wouldn't call her 'filthy', in need of a refit that's for sure. The toilets were all clean and had been refurbished about 3 years ago. I agree she needs quite a comprehensive refit, she is still very much as built. However she is on a busy schedule, and the priority is freight. Her upper and lower decks were jam packed with freight. But there were 45 cars on the crossing last night, so P&O must be doing something right. European Endeavour always seems, like most of P&O's fleet to receive 5/5 feedback on Direct Ferries, so P&O must offer pretty good value for money.

Work on the decks has started, I noticed large areas of grey primer being applied on her stern deck, I would expect in preparation to be painted. 

The upper lounge is of concern, and the cinema, and the carpets did look worn in the restaurant and lounge. But getting back to my point, she operates a busy schedule, and is pretty 'no frills'. P&O make up for it in other areas though, notably with the free three course meals, something that was 'abandoned' on the Birkenhead - Belfast route. 

In all fairness from a reliability perspective the European Endeavour is rarely cancelled, or has any issues. P&O's engineering team has her running A1, something Stena haven't really been able to achieve on her sister ship, the Stena Allegra.

Ironically on my outward bound crossing 25/08/15 (15.00) the master came on the PA, five minutes after the safety announcements were made and informed us the Stena Superfast X was experiencing 'Technical Difficulties' and the European Endeavour's departure would be delayed by about 15 minutes, however the time would be made up on the crossing.

Regarding P&O's wages, I'm sure they are in line with Irish Ferries and Stena Line (North Sea). I have experienced poor service on Stena Line, so you cant always blame 'foreign nationals' for that. I have to admit though the cabin crew on the Endeavour looked very sad, like if they were there against there will!

All in all I think the European Endeavour is a decent ship. Three weeks at H&W and I'm sure she could be up to the same grade as the Stena Mersey / Lagan. Her layout is good, with two fairly large lounges, good deckplan.     

I have found the crew on P&O vessels to be pretty friendly, and 'decent' very little difference to Stena or Irish Ferries. However I do notice a difference between the Endeavour and Norbank / Norbay. The Filipino crew seem to keep the Norbank and Norbay in better condition internally, and the food does seem better. 
 

 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 12, 2015, 12:02:32 AM
Just been on the European Endeavour, 04/09/15. I wouldn't call her 'filthy', in need of a refit that's for sure. The toilets were all clean and had been refurbished about 3 years ago. I agree she needs quite a comprehensive refit, she is still very much as built. However she is on a busy schedule, and the priority is freight. Her upper and lower decks were jam packed with freight. But there were 45 cars on the crossing last night, so P&O must be doing something right. European Endeavour always seems, like most of P&O's fleet to receive 5/5 feedback on Direct Ferries, so P&O must offer pretty good value for money.

Work on the decks has started, I noticed large areas of grey primer being applied on her stern deck, I would expect in preparation to be painted. 

The upper lounge is of concern, and the cinema, and the carpets did look worn in the restaurant and lounge. But getting back to my point, she operates a busy schedule, and is pretty 'no frills'. P&O make up for it in other areas though, notably with the free three course meals, something that was 'abandoned' on the Birkenhead - Belfast route. 

In all fairness from a reliability perspective the European Endeavour is rarely cancelled, or has any issues. P&O's engineering team has her running A1, something Stena haven't really been able to achieve on her sister ship, the Stena Allegra.

Ironically on my outward bound crossing 25/08/15 (15.00) the master came on the PA, five minutes after the safety announcements were made and informed us the Stena Superfast X was experiencing 'Technical Difficulties' and the European Endeavour's departure would be delayed by about 15 minutes, however the time would be made up on the crossing.

Regarding P&O's wages, I'm sure they are in line with Irish Ferries and Stena Line (North Sea). I have experienced poor service on Stena Line, so you cant always blame 'foreign nationals' for that. I have to admit though the cabin crew on the Endeavour looked very sad, like if they were there against there will!

All in all I think the European Endeavour is a decent ship. Three weeks at H&W and I'm sure she could be up to the same grade as the Stena Mersey / Lagan. Her layout is good, with two fairly large lounges, good deckplan.     

I have found the crew on P&O vessels to be pretty friendly, and 'decent' very little difference to Stena or Irish Ferries. However I do notice a difference between the Endeavour and Norbank / Norbay. The Filipino crew seem to keep the Norbank and Norbay in better condition internally, and the food does seem better.

I'd call some of those seats pretty filthy personally https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmackey/20745684369/in/album-72157632007090576/ .  Certainly not of the standard I would expect on a passenger ferry, regardless of the price paid.   That P&O management feel this is acceptable is rather concerning if you ask me, especially for a company that makes so much effort to convince people it is a quality operation.  Added to reports from a number of people that even the Spirits are starting to look tired in some places, I do worry what goes on in the heads of some at P&O.  I believe the staffing levels on European Endeavour are rather tight in any case, and that the crew can simply only do so much.  Personally, I feel if P&O want to run its operations on the Irish Sea so different to elsewhere, they should brand them separately (like Britanny Ferries have for example).  The Pandoro brand for example could be used.

Regarding the meals on the Birkenhead ferry, the standard offered by the previous operators was rather poor.  It's not often I turn down "free" food, but  I did just that under Norfolk Line and the later Norse Merchant crossings.  The passenger experience is certainly much improved (as I am sure it is also for the freight drivers) by the adoption of separate eating areas as well.   Certainly on the evening crossings, it is rather late for most people to be eating dinner in any case.  I'm sure the majority of people would prefer to pay for a decent meal separately, than have the price of a poor meal (which many won't eat anyway) added to there ticket price and dressed up as being "free".
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 13, 2015, 09:01:05 PM
I wouldn't knock P&O too much. The reviews on Direct Ferries seem to show satisfied customers, and I have never seen anyone complain about the food. I am a picky person when it comes to food, and find the quality better than what I have received on Irish Ferries and on certain Stena vessels, and I have had to part with €14.00+ for the benefit.

You are correct Steven, P&O could drop the meals and put the money into modernising the ships. Personally I thought the food was fine, and in my opinion it would be a shame to go down the money grabbing road. Something P&O seems to get hammered for, but I find little evidence to support this?  The food on Norbank and Norbay are better in my opinion, and yes the Endeavour does need work, but nothing a fortnight at H&W couldn't sort out.

I'm not trying to justify worn or dirty seats, but P&O are having to penny pinch everywhere they can. I personally think DP World could do a lot more with P&O than what they are currently doing. The loss of so many of their routes is very sad in my opinion. Felixstowe was a big blunder in my opinion, and just how they have let the competition undermine all their routes is quite shocking. Management should be ashamed of themselves. They have basically sold out to DFDS and Stena, most notably on the North Sea.

I agree with you Steven, P&O's retrenchment policy is very much to blame. Personally I thought it was madness, and you are right we are seeing the results of this feckless policy. Certain routes were loss making and had to go, but many had potential. P&O North Sea Ferries were very successful, particularly the Rotterdam operations.

Personally I don't have a problem with maintenance at P&O. Personally I think the European Highlander and European Causeway have aged much better than Stena Norcica, and Pride of York and Pride of Bruges are still providing sterling service, and they are 28 years old.   

However I believe P&O can be brought back from the brink. They have dedicated crews, and currently a pretty decent fleet. Regarding Liverpool, the numbers seem to speak for themselves. Surely they would support an investment decision?     
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on September 13, 2015, 10:28:23 PM
And talking of letting competition undermine them, a perfect example is the North Channel routes, which will be cut back to one at the end of the month.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 14, 2015, 12:19:11 PM
Asleep on the job comes to mind. I think they can turn things around. But it'll be hard. Basically P&O will have to start from scratch. Liverpool does highlight the need for investment, all ships are operating to capacity. Liverpool would be one of the more profit making operations. The ships are actually leaving full capacity. Scott Mackey's pics of the weather deck back this up, on all vessels, Norbay, Norbank, and European Endeavour.

I'm not sure what will happen with Troon. M.V. Super-fast Galicia is currently laid up, can accommodate 1800 LM, and 120 passengers. She can fit Troon (159m). Possible charter vessel / purchase? She has the right deck height for double trailers, and a very large weather deck. Lacking on passenger side, but better than nothing, and P&O have done business with Acciona before.

The other option is to charter a vessel / buy another vessel for Dublin to Liverpool, and move Norbay to Troon. She does fit after all, and has operated successfully from Larne, despite being 167m long. That makes me wonder would 12 metres make that much difference if lets say the Pride of Canterbury / Kent / Burgundy was moved onto the Cairnryan run. Freeing up European Causeway / Highlander to operate to Troon.

I understand P&O Dover vessels are pretty busy at the minute, and no replacements have been ordered (P&O Dover always gets new ships!) so the Kent, Canterbury, or Burgundy aren't likely to move anytime soon. But I wouldn't rule it out. 

 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on September 14, 2015, 02:23:37 PM
Asleep on the job comes to mind. I think they can turn things around. But it'll be hard. Basically P&O will have to start from scratch. Liverpool does highlight the need for investment, all ships are operating to capacity. Liverpool would be one of the more profit making operations. The ships are actually leaving full capacity. Scott Mackey's pics of the weather deck back this up, on all vessels, Norbay, Norbank, and European Endeavour.

I'm not sure what will happen with Troon. M.V. Super-fast Galicia is currently laid up, can accommodate 1800 LM, and 120 passengers. She can fit Troon (159m). Possible charter vessel / purchase? She has the right deck height for double trailers, and a very large weather deck. Lacking on passenger side, but better than nothing, and P&O have done business with Acciona before.

The other option is to charter a vessel / buy another vessel for Dublin to Liverpool, and move Norbay to Troon. She does fit after all, and has operated successfully from Larne, despite being 167m long. That makes me wonder would 12 metres make that much difference if lets say the Pride of Canterbury / Kent / Burgundy was moved onto the Cairnryan run. Freeing up European Causeway / Highlander to operate to Troon.

I understand P&O Dover vessels are pretty busy at the minute, and no replacements have been ordered (P&O Dover always gets new ships!) so the Kent, Canterbury, or Burgundy aren't likely to move anytime soon. But I wouldn't rule it out. 

 

A Facebook friend posted pictures of the Express on an August daytrip and she had under 100 passengers each way, add in the ever declining freight for Larne and I am left asking why on earth P&O would keep Troon open never mind add freight capacity to Larne.

It makes no sense whatsoever.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 14, 2015, 09:06:07 PM
That's a very pessimistic view Paddy hehe! Well if P&O were to just curl up and die Stena would be very pleased. I can't see that happening. P&O need to create reasons why a haulier would opt for Larne over Belfast. The Express has been a drain on resources, like the HSS, she is a thirsty vessel. By getting rid of the HSS, and acquiring larger vessels, Stena were able to offer a better package. I think P&O could do the same at Larne.

Troon has it uses being close to Glasgow, and as Steven said, perhaps P&O could do what Stena in Belfast, on the Scottish side (move closer to the destination. It could work. Currently there is little incentive to use Larne. As Steven pointed out the passenger capacity of the European Causeway & European Highlander hinder what daytrip offers P&O can offer, however I understand P&O are offering a good deal for students coming to Scotland by car, 1 full paying car passenger, and the rest go free.

I would imagine the European Highlander & European Causeway are cheaper to operate than the Superfast twins, but any price saving  would be taken up possibly by driving costs. If P&O reduced their sailings to a more realistic number, and tried to get the ships leaving fully loaded, then the situation would be much better. Running loads of sailings half empty certainly isn't good.

If P&O were to close Troon, they could loose what could possibly be an ace card. However, this could help the group in other ways, notably by reducing costs. Express, though a nice vessel, did cost the group a lot of money to run each year. A contributor to P&O's losses. I think P&O are going to 'wing it' for the time being.

A dedicated freighter to Troon might swing hauliers back to Larne. Hauliers are always looking at ways to save on fuel costs. A reason why Irish Ferries Pembroke service has grown, while Stena Fishguard has stagnated.     

 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: 20knots on September 15, 2015, 01:36:08 PM
An asset which Larne has that no other port anywhere in Northern Ireland or Ireland* has is a rail station integrated with the ferry terminal (* the integrated station in Rosslare Europort closed in 2008 – the station is now nearly ten minutes walk from the terminal).

Despite the cutbacks to Translink services introduced at the start of this month Larne still maintains quite a good rail service and it’s possible to travel the whole way from say Coleraine, Lisburn, Newry or even Dublin or beyond to the port without ever stepping out into the elements.

The trains are modern and equipped with wifi so people can relax or work as suits their needs.

The electric bus linking Cairnryan port to Stranraer town and station allows connectivity into the rail network in Scotland.

In my view this asset is overwhelmingly unexploited and there should be through ticketing and promotion of this route.

Some may subscribe to the viewpoint that there is little potential or that it’s not worth bothering about but consider the fact that Stena Line have a reasonable SailRail business from Belfast to Cairnryan despite the fact one has to either traipse between Great Victoria Street/Europa Buscentre and the Metro route 96 stop for the bus out to the port (or get a taxi) and despite the fact the coach journey from Port Ryan to Ayr railway station takes well over an hour. (As an aside SailRail via Belfast-Birkenhead also involves a bus on both sides).

In fact by the time a passenger arriving on a train or bus into Great Victoria Street/Europa Buscentre would get across to the Metro bus stop on Queen Street and travel out to the Stena Line terminal they’d be pretty much nearly in Larne on the train so the time difference is essentially negligible. Plus the Larne-Cairnryan crossing time is shorter than that from Belfast.

P & O has experience with through rail and ferry ticketing and I understand it’s still in place from the South East of England to Calais via Dover.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on September 15, 2015, 04:45:19 PM
An asset which Larne has that no other port anywhere in Northern Ireland or Ireland* has is a rail station integrated with the ferry terminal (* the integrated station in Rosslare Europort closed in 2008 – the station is now nearly ten minutes walk from the terminal).

Despite the cutbacks to Translink services introduced at the start of this month Larne still maintains quite a good rail service and it’s possible to travel the whole way from say Coleraine, Lisburn, Newry or even Dublin or beyond to the port without ever stepping out into the elements.

The trains are modern and equipped with wifi so people can relax or work as suits their needs.

The electric bus linking Cairnryan port to Stranraer town and station allows connectivity into the rail network in Scotland.

In my view this asset is overwhelmingly unexploited and there should be through ticketing and promotion of this route.

Some may subscribe to the viewpoint that there is little potential or that it’s not worth bothering about but consider the fact that Stena Line have a reasonable SailRail business from Belfast to Cairnryan despite the fact one has to either traipse between Great Victoria Street/Europa Buscentre and the Metro route 96 stop for the bus out to the port (or get a taxi) and despite the fact the coach journey from Port Ryan to Ayr railway station takes well over an hour. (As an aside SailRail via Belfast-Birkenhead also involves a bus on both sides).

In fact by the time a passenger arriving on a train or bus into Great Victoria Street/Europa Buscentre would get across to the Metro bus stop on Queen Street and travel out to the Stena Line terminal they’d be pretty much nearly in Larne on the train so the time difference is essentially negligible. Plus the Larne-Cairnryan crossing time is shorter than that from Belfast.

P & O has experience with through rail and ferry ticketing and I understand it’s still in place from the South East of England to Calais via Dover.

In itself this isn't a bad idea but you need to consider that the train timetables as they stand would provide few attractive connections and as we have seen in the arrogant way Translink have changed the timetable on the NI side there is little potential of them taking this into consideration.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Chief on September 15, 2015, 07:39:21 PM
I agree.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 16, 2015, 02:14:17 PM
An asset which Larne has that no other port anywhere in Northern Ireland or Ireland* has is a rail station integrated with the ferry terminal (* the integrated station in Rosslare Europort closed in 2008 – the station is now nearly ten minutes walk from the terminal).

Despite the cutbacks to Translink services introduced at the start of this month Larne still maintains quite a good rail service and it’s possible to travel the whole way from say Coleraine, Lisburn, Newry or even Dublin or beyond to the port without ever stepping out into the elements.

The trains are modern and equipped with wifi so people can relax or work as suits their needs.

The electric bus linking Cairnryan port to Stranraer town and station allows connectivity into the rail network in Scotland.

In my view this asset is overwhelmingly unexploited and there should be through ticketing and promotion of this route.

Some may subscribe to the viewpoint that there is little potential or that it’s not worth bothering about but consider the fact that Stena Line have a reasonable SailRail business from Belfast to Cairnryan despite the fact one has to either traipse between Great Victoria Street/Europa Buscentre and the Metro route 96 stop for the bus out to the port (or get a taxi) and despite the fact the coach journey from Port Ryan to Ayr railway station takes well over an hour. (As an aside SailRail via Belfast-Birkenhead also involves a bus on both sides).

In fact by the time a passenger arriving on a train or bus into Great Victoria Street/Europa Buscentre would get across to the Metro bus stop on Queen Street and travel out to the Stena Line terminal they’d be pretty much nearly in Larne on the train so the time difference is essentially negligible. Plus the Larne-Cairnryan crossing time is shorter than that from Belfast.

P & O has experience with through rail and ferry ticketing and I understand it’s still in place from the South East of England to Calais via Dover.

In itself this isn't a bad idea but you need to consider that the train timetables as they stand would provide few attractive connections and as we have seen in the arrogant way Translink have changed the timetable on the NI side there is little potential of them taking this into consideration.
P&O simply don't have the passenger capacity to significantly exploit this, even if they wanted to.  Hence the gulf in offers between Stena and P&O with regards to day trips, etc.  Stena could fill on of the P&O Mitsubishis with day trippers alone some days!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on September 16, 2015, 04:58:25 PM

P&O simply don't have the passenger capacity to significantly exploit this, even if they wanted to.  Hence the gulf in offers between Stena and P&O with regards to day trips, etc.  Stena could fill on of the P&O Mitsubishis with day trippers alone some days!

True - though it's worth remembering Stena probably make next to no money on lots of that traffic!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 16, 2015, 07:29:55 PM

P&O simply don't have the passenger capacity to significantly exploit this, even if they wanted to.  Hence the gulf in offers between Stena and P&O with regards to day trips, etc.  Stena could fill on of the P&O Mitsubishis with day trippers alone some days!

True - though it's worth remembering Stena probably make next to no money on lots of that traffic!
Also true.  Still, its people travelling, and it justifies having such large ships operating year round.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: sealink on September 25, 2015, 09:57:07 AM
I see P&O are offering a last chance to travel on the Express with a £10 discount each way. I tried to make a foot pax booking but could not see any discount in the fare. Was interested in traveling on the last days 2 sailings.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on September 25, 2015, 12:50:35 PM
Still no word on whether the route will actually close next week, or whether there is something in the pipeline that's being kept very secret from the likes of us.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 26, 2015, 01:38:48 AM
P&O like all the operators hold their cards close to their chest. Express will go as scheduled, but I'd imagine P&O are glad to see the back of her, given fuel costs.

Unfortunately Troon has become a little surplus to requirements. P&O pre 2011 were the only operator from NI to Scotland with high capacity vessels. European Highlander had double the lane metres of her counterpart, Stena Caledonia, and European Mariner mopped up a significant amount of freight.

P&O will most likely end up taking the 'less is more' approach. It all boils down to cost issues, and 'remaining competitive'. Stena have two vessels working the NI to Scotland route, hence it would probably be in P&O's interest just to match that. By offering better deals to freight users in particular, the passenger capacity wouldn't really be an issue. I'd imagine port costs combined with running the Express, and having no dedicated freighter on the route, operations out of Troon have become a toothache. Despite the profit made on Dublin to Liverpool, Troon has been absorbing all this. The best way I can describe is trying to fill a bath with no plug in it. 

By having less costs, P&O should be able to get Larne - Cairnryan back on track. P&O should be better placed than Stena regards vessel efficiency. I'm sure the Highlander and Causeway are a lot cheaper to operate than Superfast VII & VIII, and the extra 30 minutes journey time for Stena means more fuel burn. Multiply that 30 minutes by thousands of sailings a year, and the bill is quite staggering. As Steven pointed out P&O do indeed like to flag their vessels out (Nassau, Bahamas), and employ low cost cabin staff, hence even crewing costs should be cheaper than Stena. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on September 26, 2015, 09:37:18 PM
P&O like all the operators hold their cards close to their chest. Express will go as scheduled, but I'd imagine P&O are glad to see the back of her, given fuel costs.

Unfortunately Troon has become a little surplus to requirements. P&O pre 2011 were the only operator from NI to Scotland with high capacity vessels. European Highlander had double the lane metres of her counterpart, Stena Caledonia, and European Mariner mopped up a significant amount of freight.

P&O will most likely end up taking the 'less is more' approach. It all boils down to cost issues, and 'remaining competitive'. Stena have two vessels working the NI to Scotland route, hence it would probably be in P&O's interest just to match that. By offering better deals to freight users in particular, the passenger capacity wouldn't really be an issue. I'd imagine port costs combined with running the Express, and having no dedicated freighter on the route, operations out of Troon have become a toothache. Despite the profit made on Dublin to Liverpool, Troon has been absorbing all this. The best way I can describe is trying to fill a bath with no plug in it. 

By having less costs, P&O should be able to get Larne - Cairnryan back on track. P&O should be better placed than Stena regards vessel efficiency. I'm sure the Highlander and Causeway are a lot cheaper to operate than Superfast VII & VIII, and the extra 30 minutes journey time for Stena means more fuel burn. Multiply that 30 minutes by thousands of sailings a year, and the bill is quite staggering. As Steven pointed out P&O do indeed like to flag their vessels out (Nassau, Bahamas), and employ low cost cabin staff, hence even crewing costs should be cheaper than Stena.

I haven't often agreed with you TC but on this occasion I must!

The only thing I'd add is a little rationalisation of Cairnryan sailings would help too - for example surely 1030 and 1330 could be a 1200 sailing with no real loss of traffic?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 26, 2015, 10:15:35 PM
P&O like all the operators hold their cards close to their chest. Express will go as scheduled, but I'd imagine P&O are glad to see the back of her, given fuel costs.

Unfortunately Troon has become a little surplus to requirements. P&O pre 2011 were the only operator from NI to Scotland with high capacity vessels. European Highlander had double the lane metres of her counterpart, Stena Caledonia, and European Mariner mopped up a significant amount of freight.

P&O will most likely end up taking the 'less is more' approach. It all boils down to cost issues, and 'remaining competitive'. Stena have two vessels working the NI to Scotland route, hence it would probably be in P&O's interest just to match that. By offering better deals to freight users in particular, the passenger capacity wouldn't really be an issue. I'd imagine port costs combined with running the Express, and having no dedicated freighter on the route, operations out of Troon have become a toothache. Despite the profit made on Dublin to Liverpool, Troon has been absorbing all this. The best way I can describe is trying to fill a bath with no plug in it. 

By having less costs, P&O should be able to get Larne - Cairnryan back on track. P&O should be better placed than Stena regards vessel efficiency. I'm sure the Highlander and Causeway are a lot cheaper to operate than Superfast VII & VIII, and the extra 30 minutes journey time for Stena means more fuel burn. Multiply that 30 minutes by thousands of sailings a year, and the bill is quite staggering. As Steven pointed out P&O do indeed like to flag their vessels out (Nassau, Bahamas), and employ low cost cabin staff, hence even crewing costs should be cheaper than Stena.

I haven't often agreed with you TC but on this occasion I must!

The only thing I'd add is a little rationalisation of Cairnryan sailings would help too - for example surely 1030 and 1330 could be a 1200 sailing with no real loss of traffic?
Also in agreement here!  A 12:00 would make a lot of sense to me as well. 

I'd definitely agree with you on the efficiency TC.  Despite being overpowered for their size (going purely by the numbers), the mitsubishi's should be way more efficient, even on the same length of crossing. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on October 01, 2015, 07:16:59 PM
http://www.niferrysite.co.uk/end-era-goodbye-pos-express/

Quote

The end of an era: Goodbye to P&O’s HSC Express.

Yesterday's evening departure from Troon to Larne marked the last commercial sailing of P&O's Express, and the final fast craft sailing between Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Back in 1992, when Seacat Scotland inaugurated the first fast craft sailing between Northern Ireland and Scotland, it looked like the future of car and passenger carrying ferry services between the two countries may well have laid with these vessels, with Stena and P&O also introducing fast services to supplement their existing conventional operations, culminating in services being offered to Stranraer, Cairnryan, Troon, Heysham, and the Isle of Man between the three operators.


However, rising operating costs (in no small part due to a rising oil price), competition from low cost airlines, and a general shift in traffic towards freight (of which the majority of craft could not carry, Stena's HSS Voyager being the notable exception) have meant that operating these services has become less and less commercially viable.

As reported by NIFS, P&O announced earlier this year that the InCat Catamaran, Express, would be withdrawn at the end of her season on 31st September. It has since been revealed that she has been acquired by a new Swedish operation, Gotlandsbåten, to operate between the Swedish mainland and Gotland. Although officially P&O have said they are not necessarily closing the Larne-Troon route, it appears to be becoming increasingly unlikely that the route will continue, with no alternative craft having yet been announced as secured. The constraints on vessel size at both Larne and Troon make finding a suitable vessel even more difficult, particularly given that P&O have strongly hinted that they will not operate another fast craft due to the operating economics of such vessels.

NIFS understands that Express will now de-store at Larne, before being delivered to her new owners.  All of her external branding was already removed in the previous few weeks.  The Isle of Man Steam Packet vessel Manannan (also an InCat catamaran) remains the final car carrying catamaran operating to Northern Ireland.  The withdrawal of Express means that there will be no service from Larne to the Isle of Man during the IoM TT season, with the Steam Packet intending to boost capacity by operating additional sailings with Manannan and the ro-pax vessel Ben My Chree instead.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on October 01, 2015, 08:50:44 PM
Very sad to see her de-branded. At least she has a future though! Might not be in our waters, but its better than Stena Metal or Aliaga.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on October 02, 2015, 04:05:01 PM
Having already been handed over to her new owners, Express is now in the dry dock at Harland and Wolff.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on October 07, 2015, 08:35:33 PM
Though technically not a P&O vessel anymore, thought I'd update with the following

News has reached me that there seems to have been a bit of a hick up in the deal between Nordic HSC and Buquebus, with things yet to be finalised.  Suggestions that Express could be at Albert Quay for a while yet!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: maehara on October 09, 2015, 10:55:48 AM
Having already been handed over to her new owners, Express is now in the dry dock at Harland and Wolff.

News has reached me that there seems to have been a bit of a hick up in the deal between Nordic HSC and Buquebus, with things yet to be finalised.  Suggestions that Express could be at Albert Quay for a while yet!

Makes me wonder, did the new owners find something they didn't like the look of while Express was drydocked...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on October 09, 2015, 07:35:36 PM
I have no inside knowledge so this is purely a comment.

It would be at this handover stage that a payment would be due from the new owners to Buquebus - any hiccup with that could present an issue.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on October 11, 2015, 07:00:12 PM
Having already been handed over to her new owners, Express is now in the dry dock at Harland and Wolff.

News has reached me that there seems to have been a bit of a hick up in the deal between Nordic HSC and Buquebus, with things yet to be finalised.  Suggestions that Express could be at Albert Quay for a while yet!

Makes me wonder, did the new owners find something they didn't like the look of while Express was drydocked...

It was probably administration/paperwork related I suspect.  In any case, I have no further knowledge, just that there was a hold up.  Anyway,

Express is expected to be handed over from Buquebus to Nordic HSC later in the week (late), with her departure from Belfast expected to happen shortly after.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on November 02, 2015, 10:01:41 PM
Quote
Marine Accident Investigation branch says that P&O Pride of Canterbury blaze was due to 23-year-old leaky valve
29 October 2015
A worn pressure valve that had never been checked for 23 years has been noted as the cause of a dramatic ferry blaze.

The P&O Pride of Canterbury hit the headlines on Wednesday, September 29 last year after a fire broke out in the engine room.

But today, an accident investigation report published by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch has revealed more details.

P&O's Pride of Canterbury. Picture: Marine Accident Investigation Branch
It said that when the ship was approaching Calais at about 8am it became apparent that the starboard controllable pitch propeller was not responding.

But because of the weather conditions, the captain made the decision to carry on to the berth.

As it got closer the system ruptured, spraying oil on the exhaust uptakes and subsequently causing a fire.

Scores of French police and firefighters helped it to the shore.

The main engine room was evacuated and 337 passengers were mustered to the emergency stations.

There was 119 crew members on-board.

Pictures were taken on the smoke billowing up through the decks.

The report said: "The failed joint, along with others in the system, was not shielded to prevent a spray of oil in the event of joint failure.

"The back pressure valve was found to be worn and had not been tested for functionality during its 23 years of service."

The ferry firm has since completed a programme of modifications to the vessel and three of its other ships.

A technical bulletin has also been released which says that back pressure valves should be replaced after 15 years.

Helen Deeble, the chief executive of P&O Ferries, said: “As the report makes clear, we have already implemented a programme of modifications on the Pride of Canterbury and its sister ships to ensure enhanced safety arrangements are in place.

"We also complied with all technical guidelines that were in place at the time.

"This incident occurred as passengers were disembarking the ship, the response of our crew was immediate in successfully extinguishing the fire, and nobody was injured.

"The safety of our customers is our absolute priority and we review our procedures continuously to ensure that they are second to none.”
http://www.kentonline.co.uk/dover/news/po-ferry-fire-45513/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on November 05, 2015, 05:04:25 PM
P&O generally has a good safety record, and their engineering crews are pretty much the same Stena, in fact I was talking to a engineer on Stena Superfast X and his previous ship was the European Endeavour!

In terms of engine room fires that involved a P&O vessel there was a small fire, (extinguished very quickly by the fire fighting systems), on Norsea about 13 years ago. Since then I think all the P&O ships have had a clean bill of health.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-136163/Fire-drama-North-Sea-ferry.html

If I recall correctly Oscar Wilde suffered an engine room fire a few years ago, and so did Stena Superfast X when she was serving for DFDS in Dover.

Unfortunately I don't think there are many vessels that haven't had an engine room fire. However it is an indicator that aging ships are more likely to encounter serious technical problems as they get older. To be honest a vessel like Stena Europe, or Danica, or Nautica.... could encounter a similar problem.

Stena Lynx III -  Engine Room fire  - 

https://www.gov.uk/maib-reports/fire-in-engine-room-on-high-speed-passenger-ferry-stena-lynx-iii-off-fishguard-wales

I have to give credit to P&O's crew for dealing with the issue very promptly and professionally. I think the media are making this incident a little more dramatic than it actually was. Like all ferries sailing in UK and Irish waters, the Pride of Canterbury was equipped with CO2 extinguishing systems. I'm just glad no engine room technicians weren't hurt.   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on December 04, 2015, 11:56:13 PM
All P&O Irish Sea operations are running on-time and on schedule.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 05, 2015, 03:06:41 AM
All P&O Irish Sea operations are running on-time and on schedule.
Norbay appears to have left the berth at Liverpool an hour late (@22:00), and is making slow progress towards Dublin at around 10kts.  Norbank left Dublin around 22:00 also, but is faring much better on her crossing.  European Endeavour looks to still be on the berth at Liverpool, rather than departing at 03:00.  According to P&O's online status though, all is well!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on December 05, 2015, 11:30:55 AM
Norbay and Norbank are tough old girls. Built like tanks. Very rare they get cancelled. I believe Stena Birkenhead decided not to venture out, understandable, considering Norbay was having to make 10 knots. Still its a testament to the quality of van-der-Giessen-De-Noord products. Their ships are first class from a build perspective. Ben-My-Chree, Isle of Inishmore, Mont St Michel, Stena Jutlandica, and 'KB' all came out of this same yard. Its such a shame the company went under.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 05, 2015, 01:18:10 PM
I'd imagine Stena cancelling was more to do with berthing parameters  than any inability of the vessels to withstand the weather.  Bear in mind that 12q is much more exposed than P&O's berth inside Liverpools lock system!  The Visentini product can withstand a heck of a battering by the weather.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on December 05, 2015, 08:12:30 PM
That's true the Visentini's aren't bad, but Norbank and Norbay have 22 years of sterling service both on the North Sea and Irish Sea. They were built to deal with very severe swells on the long Hull to Europoort crossing. The bows on the Vissentini's are quite noisy. I have heard quite a lot of people complain about metallic bangs and rattling on that class (more than on the P&O Mitsubishi's - Stena Nordica included!).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Matt73 on December 07, 2015, 08:49:45 PM
That's true the Visentini's aren't bad, but Norbank and Norbay have 22 years of sterling service both on the North Sea and Irish Sea. They were built to deal with very severe swells on the long Hull to Europoort crossing. The bows on the Vissentini's are quite noisy. I have heard quite a lot of people complain about metallic bangs and rattling on that class (more than on the P&O Mitsubishi's - Stena Nordica included!).

You're absolutley right!  I sailed on the Stena Mersey in September and there was a lot of metallic banging which I attributed to the car deck which was behind the block of cabins.  It ruined an otherwise pleasant sailing. 

Matt
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 10, 2015, 10:47:01 AM
Express still laid up in Belfast...
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 31, 2015, 11:39:10 PM
The former Pride of Rathlin/Pride of Walmer/Free Enterprise VII sank in Indonesia during July '15.  Her hull was said to be very brittle due to lack of maintenance, resulting in cracks forming and her leaking.  More at http://wp.me/p4mKUi-s0

For those that missed it, Express Belfast left shortly after my last post in this thread.  She is now laid up for winter in Sweden.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 01, 2016, 04:22:20 PM
Thanks for the update Steven.

Sad news yet again, as another character has gone. Disturbing hearing about her condition, and lack of maintenance. She has been in Indonesia for about 15 years, and I'm sure her owners weren't too concerned about safety etc. She was 43 years old, so that is pretty good going! I have ever only seen a photo of her that is about 4 or 5 years old.

Hope there was no loss of life.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 02, 2016, 06:26:01 AM
Former P&O freighter Star Fighter (ex Gardenia, European Endeavour, European Enterprise) has left Cyprus apparently bound for Port Said (which she has now passed).  Still showing a destination of Port Said, though she is in the Suez Canal (her AIS does not appear have updated since last night, marine traffic lost her off cyprus but vessel finder has her in the suez).  This is the same route taken by Sherbatskiy to Alang not so long ago.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 02, 2016, 12:21:30 PM
She only received a new stern door this year, and quite a bit of investment, strange they are sending her to scrap. However she is the right age for the beach! I imagine something may have broken down / failed and her owners (Whom I think are Russian?) probably thought it would be more cost effective to scrap her. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 02, 2016, 08:17:33 PM
Meanwhile, no news on Larne - Troon must mean the route is quietly axed. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 02, 2016, 10:01:16 PM
Patria Seaways has been chartered to P&O to cover refits on the North Sea. It is possible she will be used to cover refits on the Irish Sea.

For the record she can technically fit Troon, so P&O do have an option. Her service speed is 17 knots so she isn't exactly fast, but European Highlander and European Causeway generally cruise at 18. Berths are hardly at a premium at Larne, so I imagine she could just use Norcape's old berth (Norbay's berth when she is on cover), and operate a Troon to Larne service. 

Whether they take it or not all depends on the numbers. Less may be more. Stena aren't making a killing either on the Scotland to NI route. Superfasts cost a small fortune to run, and the latter has suggested fat may have to be trimmed.

If P&O had to axe Troon, they will still have more sailings from Cairnryan to NI, than Stena, and both companies ships have the same amount of car-deck capacity. P&O still stress this is merely a 'vessel issue' not a 'route issue' - how true this is I'll leave you to be the judge.

The NI to Scotland operations have become over capacitated in many respects. Stena have more than doubled their capacity, so P&O's NI operations have naturally been effected, in a largely negative way I may add.

P&O is best placed to combat the problem by increasing efficiencies by cutting down from a three ship, and three port operation, to a two ship, two port operation.
7
Personally I think its a great shame to see the route close. I for one have been a loyal customer of P&O for many years. I think the company is excellent, the crews first rate, the quality has been very good, and you get value for money. But unfortunately, the sums have to add up, that's business. By propping up a failing service it only undermines P&O Ferries as a whole.

Nova Star (Norman Leader) is also another option. She has plenty of facilities, and I would imagine could manage both the Cairnryan / Troon operations. Once again its a financial gamble.

If P&O did keep the route open I think everyone would have to take their hat off to the latter for commitment. Still a two ship, two port operation would best suit P&O Larne. Another vessel would be better placed on Dublin to Liverpool.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 03, 2016, 06:11:28 AM
Patria Seaways would be the wrong ship IMO.  For a start she is configured primarily as a freighter, hence not taking passengers when on the Zeebrugge run.  P&O gave up on the Larne to Troon freight service a number of years ago, I don't see how market conditions have changed to make them reverse that decision.  Her time keeping would be a problem as well.  I don't know her consumption figures, but I'd imagine they'd be higher than the mitsubishi's at that speed given she would be running flat-out compared to the Japanese vessels merely cruising.  Nova Star would cost a fortune to run and tbh I don't think any operator in their right mind would take her on.  That she sat dormant for so long speaks volumes.

Im inclined to go with Paddy on this one.  I think the route will be quietly axed, and the lack of efficient tonnage and operating costs blamed.  Certainly the figures for her final month in service would indicate that the public aren't that interested in the service any longer.  Its a shame though, as it was certainly useful for Glasgow day-trips.  I doubt that trade made P&O much money though.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Collision-course on January 03, 2016, 08:41:36 PM
I think I read somewhere that Nova Star was refused an International Passenger Cert which is why she ended up on a Canadian domestic service.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 03, 2016, 08:56:19 PM
I think I read somewhere that Nova Star was refused an International Passenger Cert which is why she ended up on a Canadian domestic service.
Wouldn't be surprised.  I believe her issues are numerous, and not just related to the deadweight issue which get highlighted so much.  Perhaps she could be put right, but it may be less hassle for any perspective operator to simply look elsewhere!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 03, 2016, 10:28:52 PM
I think I read somewhere that Nova Star was refused an International Passenger Cert which is why she ended up on a Canadian domestic service.

I think the restricted freight capacity has fixed her issues.  Canada has high safety standards so there is no reason why the ship couldn't sail in Europe, the problem would be her poor configuration freight Vs passengers Vs cabins.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 03, 2016, 10:32:46 PM
Patria Seaways would be the wrong ship IMO.  For a start she is configured primarily as a freighter, hence not taking passengers when on the Zeebrugge run.  P&O gave up on the Larne to Troon freight service a number of years ago, I don't see how market conditions have changed to make them reverse that decision.  Her time keeping would be a problem as well.  I don't know her consumption figures, but I'd imagine they'd be higher than the mitsubishi's at that speed given she would be running flat-out compared to the Japanese vessels merely cruising.  Nova Star would cost a fortune to run and tbh I don't think any operator in their right mind would take her on.  That she sat dormant for so long speaks volumes.

A few years ago P&O did consider moving the Norbay to Larne - Troon and she did a trial at the port so maybe Patria Seaways could replace her at Dublin and her go North.  But I will stop daydreaming... I believe that her trials showed she would have problems at Troon in anything but perfect conditions and she struggles at Larne with any wind.  Meanwhile, as Steven says the freight to Troon hasn't existed for years and would  it just eat into P&O's Cairnryan trade.

In truth, Troon won't be back.  Surely this will be confirmed in the next month?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 03, 2016, 11:55:34 PM
P&O are staying tight lipped for sure.

Regarding Dublin operations they need bigger vessels not smaller ones. Norbay is an essential component of the P&O Dublin operation. Unless a larger vessel or equal size one can be found, she is staying put. Any vessel smaller would mean P&O would have to turn down freight. Norbay, Norbank, and European Endeavour are always jam packed with trailers on both the lower, main, and weather deck.

I imagine she would be too big for Larne, she has slightly more lane meters than the Superfasts! In photographs by Scott Mackey while she was providing relief on the North Channel, her upper deck looked very empty, not a good sign. 

P&O's best option for the North Channel is to bite the bullet and slash costs, and nail Stena on the fares. Its better to have one route competitively priced, with slightly fewer sailings, than an operation that is haemorrhaging funds.

P&O need to focus on continuing to grow Dublin to Liverpool. A fourth ship is a real possibility.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Stena Fergus on January 09, 2016, 07:09:42 PM
When do the Cairnryan ships go for refit? Will they be getting their stern gates widened to make full use of the new linkspan?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 10, 2016, 11:49:10 AM
When do the Cairnryan ships go for refit? Will they be getting their stern gates widened to make full use of the new linkspan?
I doubt it.  There would appear to be machinery in the way going by photos on the web.  I don't think they have any issues with turnaround times in any case.

Former P&O freighter Star Fighter (ex Gardenia, European Endeavour, European Enterprise) has left Cyprus apparently bound for Port Said (which she has now passed).  Still showing a destination of Port Said, though she is in the Suez Canal (her AIS does not appear have updated since last night, marine traffic lost her off cyprus but vessel finder has her in the suez).  This is the same route taken by Sherbatskiy to Alang not so long ago.
It seems she has got another short term charter operating from Egypt.

Thanks for the update Steven.

Sad news yet again, as another character has gone. Disturbing hearing about her condition, and lack of maintenance. She has been in Indonesia for about 15 years, and I'm sure her owners weren't too concerned about safety etc. She was 43 years old, so that is pretty good going! I have ever only seen a photo of her that is about 4 or 5 years old.

Hope there was no loss of life.
There have been suggestions coming from Malaysia that she was in fact sunken deliberately, due to the same ownership dispute which has kept her out of service for the past few years.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 11, 2016, 12:50:24 PM
Lots of talk in Larne that P&O confirmed to some staff last week that Larne to Troon route is now officially axed and there will be a public announcement soon.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Stena Fergus on January 11, 2016, 08:59:22 PM
When do the Cairnryan ships go for refit? Will they be getting their stern gates widened to make full use of the new linkspan?
I doubt it.  There would appear to be machinery in the way going by photos on the web.  I don't think they have any issues with turnaround times in any case

Seems a bit odd that for years they had ships twice as wide as the linkspan, now they've built one with ramps the ships don't use, and everything still drives on and off single file. The Mitsubishi sisters will be on this link for years to come, being the first purpose built ships the route ever received. I know the old ramp had to be replaced having been there since the dawn of time, but it's seems a bit of a waste to build a double width ramp and only use half of it, when the ships are clearly broad enough to be adapted, in fact, the stern ramps on both ships look like an afterthought to make them fit the old linkspan.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 12, 2016, 01:25:26 PM
P&O ordered the linkspan to be much wider than the previous one to accommodate larger, more sophisticated vessels, than those of late. The European Highlander and European Causeway have years of service ahead of them. They are very well maintained, an have an excellent reliability records. However when the time comes for them to be replaced the vast bulk of the linkspan will be used. Additionally having a wider linkspan give P&O more scope with regard to refit relief.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 12, 2016, 05:08:45 PM
Given how long the last linkspan stood, this one will probably be there way beyond the life of the current fleet on the link. If it was just a matter of taking an angle grinder/plasma torch to them and replacing the gate then perhaps they would adapt the current fleet, but it appears it will require more than this.  With no need to turn the ships around faster, I can't see them justifying the investment.  It would perhaps have been more prudent to have designed the ships with a wider opening in the first place (given it was common previously for the linkspan to be to narrow) to give them more flexibility in the future IMO.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 12, 2016, 09:52:44 PM
French press saying P&O may start a Dunkerque operation
http://m.nordlittoral.fr/accueil/po-interesse-par-dunkerque-ia0b0n274463
(bad translation courtesy of google below)

Quote
Calais-Dover, royal road. Dunkirk-Dover, second royal road. This is what seems to think P & O. With six ships on the Calais-Dover line, the Anglo-Dubai-based company never carried as many trucks in this year 2015: 1,340,317 units shipped in 2015 (1,101,596 in 2014, 22%).

Without abandoning the first passenger port in France, P & O could also locate in Dunkirk. So says an article in Le Figaro published on Sunday evening: "P & O, unsuccessful candidate for the resumption of boat My Ferry Link faces DFDS, hopes to add new routes to Britain from Dunkirk (sic) . "

Penalized by clashes

It is true that Dunkerque Seaways DFDS recorded record traffic: 698,000 units shipped in 2015 (576,860, 21%).

The obvious consequence of clashes that took place on the highway and the port ring road last summer blockages by former employees of SeaFrance SCOP and assaults of migrants.

The P & O Ferries communications department summarizes: "No comment. We do not confirm or reverse such information. "

Karine WARNAULT adds, however: "We are not the source of the information published in Le Figaro. We are studying this possibility. We are obviously open to all proposals. The Channel market offers different possibilities. "

Currently six P & O ships currently in service on the Calais-Dover are planned for several months on this line.

Personally, I'm not so sure about this one.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 12, 2016, 10:34:09 PM
A P&O Dunkirk operation would literally be giving DFDS a taste of their own medicine so to speak. They were not shy when they launched a Calais operation.

I don't think this will happen soon given the lack of suitable tonnage.

I think P&O's main priority should be to concentrate on its existing routes. A series of new builds will probably be announced for the channel by 2020, replacing the aging Pride of Burgundy / Canterbury / Kent.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 12, 2016, 10:44:16 PM
Of course, it could be Ramsgate they are really interested in... :p
http://www.meretmarine.com/fr/content/detroit-une-annee-record-pour-po-ferries-et-des-projets-ferroviaires
Quote
The company P & O Ferries has increased by 22% its cargo traffic between Calais and Dover in 2015. Taking advantage of a chaotic season for the competition (Case of MyFerryLink activities in June, blocking vessels DFDS and Tunnel Channel), the airline carried 1,340,317 freight units on six ships - including an additional reinforcement positioned this summer - it operates the Detroit.

Janette Bell, commenciale Director of the Company, provides for "the accentuation of Channel transport demand, driven by population growth and the strength of the British economy. The vast majority of our freight customers are companies carrying goods from continental Europe to Britain. "

In 2016, however, it will count with the strengthening of DFDS, including the arrival of the two former ferry MyFerryLink, Rodin and Berlioz (renamed Côtes des Dunes of Flanders and Coasts), the Danish group has put into service on 9 and February 16.

Furthermore, P & O will soon associate with VIIA, a subsidiary of SNCF, to create a rail motorway between Calais and Boulou, near Perpignan. The contract is not signed yet but could be on a traffic 40,000 freight units annually. Rumors point to a lessor can use Nord-Pas-de-Calais for this purpose, as well as departures from another port like Ramsgate English in order to bypass the congested infrastructure of Dover.

A P&O Dunkirk operation would literally be giving DFDS a taste of their own medicine so to speak. They were not shy when they launched a Calais operation.

I don't think this will happen soon given the lack of suitable tonnage.

I think P&O's main priority should be to concentrate on its existing routes. A series of new builds will probably be announced for the channel by 2020, replacing the aging Pride of Burgundy / Canterbury / Kent.
Suggestions elsewhere it could perhaps work with European Seaway and Nord pas de Calais (which after all is available, and a charter for a line operating to France would surely go down well with the French courts).  P&O are known to be looking at the possibility of triple decker ships with 150 truck capacity each.  Where they could build them though would be anyones guess, perhaps they'll bite the bullet and order from Korea this time (bearing in mind DMSE nearly got the last contract).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 13, 2016, 01:01:28 AM
Think your spot on with regards to Korea, Steven. Stena have done plenty of business with the Koreans, Hyundai most notably, more recently with Samsung. If it works for Stena (and DFDS / Norfolk Line) it should work for P&O. The latter does tend to 'flash the cash' and stick with the 'Mercedes-Benz' of shipbuilding - STX Aker Yards, Lloyd Werft, Fincantieri. Its nice they support European industry, but they could have got three Spirits for the price of the two they took delivery of in 2010 / 2011.

Too many routes can be problematic, as more routes means more port costs. A revised Dover - Calais fleet would be the best way forward. Ramsgate to Zeebrugge might work? Pride of Canterbury and Pride of Kent probably have another 10 years of life, and they will probably be destined for the beach anyway, so a Ramsgate to Zeebrugge route might not be a bad option given P&O have an existing operation out of the port.   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 13, 2016, 12:03:45 PM
Taken from NI Ferry Site http://wp.me/p4mKUi-tM (http://wp.me/p4mKUi-tM)

Quote
P&O today finally announced that the seasonal Larne to Troon ferry service has been closed with immediate effect.  This follows the decision last year not to renew the charter of the routes vessel, InCat catamaran HSC Express, which was subsequently sold by her South American owners to Swedish interests.  Whilst there will be no redundancies as a result of the closure, NIFS understand that the majority of the staff were seasonal meaning they no longer have jobs for next year.  It is also understood that the contract with ABP for the use of the Port of Troon expires this June.

In a statement released this morning, the ferry company said:

“P&O Ferries has proudly operated this additional seasonal route since 2003, but the stark reality is that the company is continuing to make significant losses, and sadly the income from ticket sales is not sufficient to cover the annual vessel and port operating costs”

“In a final attempt to make the route economic the company reduced the service in the off-peak months last year, whilst maintaining the full service in the peak months of July and August.

“Whilst this measure did significantly reduce the operating costs, the route remained loss-making.”

"Since the last sailing at the end of September, P&O Ferries has continued to negotiate with a number of suppliers and other organisations, including the search for a lower cost chartered fast-craft to be able to continue, but we have been unable to develop a solution for the company.

"There will be no redundancies, with all permanent staff being found alternative roles within the company."

The company also stated that the year-round Larne to Cairnryan service would continue to operate with 7 sailings per day "throughout 2016 and into the future".  The statement concluded:

“The company believes that this decision will enable a more secure future for its employees and for its customers on the northern corridor,”

NIFS understand that previous customers of the route have been emailed a 20% off discount code to try the Larne to Cairnryan route alternative. The email also states improvements to the Cairnryan service will be made this year such as "more locally sourced produce and recipes for the food court", "more comfortable seating areas", "a media lounge to relax and catch up on the news", and "more fun in the kids area".  The Larne to Cairnryan service is operated by the purpose built conventional ferries European Causeway and European Highlander.

The Larne times covers the announcement in more detail here.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on January 26, 2016, 10:28:36 PM
I noticed European Endeavour looking very worn out and rusty the other day.  Not a very good image for P&O.  Is she not being dry docked this year?  She looks like she could do with it.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 26, 2016, 11:00:21 PM
Both Larne ships experienced delays this afternoon due to weather, with Highlander arriving around 2 hours late following an aborted arrival in Larne.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 27, 2016, 12:01:46 PM
I noticed European Endeavour looking very worn out and rusty the other day.  Not a very good image for P&O.  Is she not being dry docked this year?  She looks like she could do with it.

I haven't heard anything about a dry-docking, however imagine she will drop into Cammell Lairds for a bit of work. P&O are reluctant to take her off service because of the high freight levels being moved. If they take her off service it will upset the apple cart so to speak. All the ships are jam packed on all sailings, so I imagine it would cause considerable issues.

European Endeavour takes quite a hammering on the way across, and P&O rarely cancel on the central corridor. She did go for a dry-docking last year, but received zero exterior attention. She last got a sort of 'half repaint' / touch up in 2012 at Falmouth.

Stena Europe isn't looking great these days either, however Pride of Burgundy is certainly showing her age. However the tight turnarounds can explain that.

The best kept ships in my opinion are the P&O's Larne twins. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on January 27, 2016, 08:57:44 PM
I noticed European Endeavour looking very worn out and rusty the other day.  Not a very good image for P&O.  Is she not being dry docked this year?  She looks like she could do with it.

I haven't heard anything about a dry-docking, however imagine she will drop into Cammell Lairds for a bit of work. P&O are reluctant to take her off service because of the high freight levels being moved. If they take her off service it will upset the apple cart so to speak. All the ships are jam packed on all sailings, so I imagine it would cause considerable issues.

European Endeavour takes quite a hammering on the way across, and P&O rarely cancel on the central corridor. She did go for a dry-docking last year, but received zero exterior attention. She last got a sort of 'half repaint' / touch up in 2012 at Falmouth.

Stena Europe isn't looking great these days either, however Pride of Burgundy is certainly showing her age. However the tight turnarounds can explain that.

The best kept ships in my opinion are the P&O's Larne twins.
They need to address the interior as well in my opinion.  She looks like a ship they no longer care about.  I also see a lot of criticism of the Dover ships on Facebook and Twitter as well.   Perhaps P&O don't care anymore?  I see on this site Stena Europe is to get another pretty extensive dry-docking, yet European Endeavour gets left again.  I'm sure they could borrow a ship from someone to cover - they took Norbay off service not so long ago to cover the North Channel and refitted both of the former NSF freighters too so they can and have managed without one of their "main ships".  I'm sure they can cope without their third ship as well.  I don't buy it.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 28, 2016, 10:40:00 AM
I think they just haven't got round to repainting them. The schedule is tight on Dublin to Liverpool, and getting the vessel to cover European Endeavour is the big issue. I don't see what is wrong with Stena Nordica (Malo Seaways) covering the route.

I agree with you European Endeavour does need work. She was dry-docked last year, but no exterior painting was done, and I didn't notice any changes when I was on-board. I think P&O's priority is reliability, making sure engines etc are all working as they should.

She wasn't brutal when I went on her, but I think it would be nice if they upgraded the interior.

I think the Dover ships are fairly well looked after given its a 24/7 operation, with tight turnarounds. In all fairness I found Pride of Canterbury top notch when I went on her. The floor to ceiling windows were great, and there was a nice relaxed atmosphere. I thought the interior was lovely. Crew were great, very friendly, food was good. I had a great experience.

My trip on Stena Nordica raised more issues to be honest - she seemed quite worn, particularly the front lounge, and the gents didn't have the most pleasant smell.   

- Additionally P&O are going to have to maximise efficiencies. Pride of Bruges, Pride of York, Pride of Burgundy and European Seaway in particular will need replacing in the next 5 - 7 years. P&O need to conserve costs everywhere, and maximise profits. They would probably be able to retain Pride of Canterbury and Pride of Kent for about another 10 years with the right maintenance. The on-board experience isn't that much different to the Spirits, but I hear a lot of people mention the drastic difference from Pride of Burgundy to Spirit of Britain. In all fairness, Burgundy is looking not bad for a 23 year old ship internally. I would say she is in better nick internally than Isle of Inishmore, and Pride of Burgundy would take far more passengers.   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 28, 2016, 10:50:23 PM
Pride of Burgundy has returned from refit, looking pretty clean and white - in the OLD P&O livery.  P&O having second thoughts?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on January 29, 2016, 12:14:20 AM
That's something I've mentioned a lot on the Dover Forum. If P&O was really serious with the rebranded look, they would've repainted the two Spirits, Seaway and Burgundy, in a similar way to what DFDS have done with their Dover based ships. Instead they've decided not to bother.

This leaves the Pride of Kent, Pride of Canterbury, European Causeway, European Highlander, Norbay and Norbank in the new livery; the European Seaway in a hybrid look and the rest of the fleet (the Spirits, the Hull vessels, European Endeavour, Pride of Burgundy, Norsky and Norstream) in the old livery.   A slightly confusing look, but then again will the general public really notice - a point made on the Dover Forum.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 29, 2016, 10:21:29 AM
That's something I've mentioned a lot on the Dover Forum. If P&O was really serious with the rebranded look, they would've repainted the two Spirits, Seaway and Burgundy, in a similar way to what DFDS have done with their Dover based ships. Instead they've decided not to bother.

This leaves the Pride of Kent, Pride of Canterbury, European Causeway, European Highlander, Norbay and Norbank in the new livery; the European Seaway in a hybrid look and the rest of the fleet (the Spirits, the Hull vessels, European Endeavour, Pride of Burgundy, Norsky and Norstream) in the old livery.   A slightly confusing look, but then again will the general public really notice - a point made on the Dover Forum.

Pride of Burgundy has returned from refit, looking pretty clean and white - in the OLD P&O livery.  P&O having second thoughts?

I agree definitely a confusing look. The North Sea ships still wear the old 2001 / 2002 - P&O North Sea Ferries livery. The new livery I am still not in love with. Looks a little on the cheap side. Its sort of like a transition from Burtons to Matalan, or M&S to Asda.

However on the poferries.com website they have a Photoshop image of the Pride of Rotterdam in the new livery. Who knows what P&O are going to do. I cant see the Pride of Bruges / York getting the new livery - but who knows. Its interesting that the aging members of the fleet have been left out. (Hmmmm???)

Regards Pride of Burgundy - Thank god they have smartened her up. She looked quite weather beaten alright.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on January 29, 2016, 11:11:44 AM
But the current flagships don't have the new livery... surely the two Spirits would be the first to carry it!!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 29, 2016, 11:15:38 AM
I am hoping they don't get it. It looks cheap and nasty!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on January 29, 2016, 02:11:36 PM
I agree.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 29, 2016, 10:22:31 PM
The confused livery speaks volumes about P&O generally.

Where does the future of that company lie, one really can't see the brand existing in the medium term.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 30, 2016, 03:45:15 PM
P&O isn't going anywhere soon. Their have buckets more heritage than Stena, and pioneering successes, and innovation. I personally think the company is great.

I personally don't like the new look. But as a company, if their only route was Dover to Calais, they would probably still survive.

Just because they haven't fully rebranded the ships doesn't mean they don't have any direction for the brand. Oscar Wilde & Epsilon don't wear full Irish Ferries livery, but the latter is good company. Likewise Stena Europe never got the blue Stena stripes painted on.

P&O are doing well on the Dover route, and North Sea, it appears Larne is the only basket case the company is having to deal with.

Last year P&O Ferries reported a £13m profit. 2016 might be £18 million... 2017 might be £20 million. Stena make losses on the Irish Sea, but they use money from other resources to prop up the ferries operation.

DFDS have a mixed up look themselves with the former Norfolk Line ships wearing the 2010 DFDS colours, while the former Seafrance ships are in another. 



Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 30, 2016, 07:50:08 PM
How many routes have P&O shut down under the current CEO??
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 31, 2016, 12:42:52 AM
Why would P&O support loss making operations? Many companies who have ditched the 'drains' on their profits have come out stronger in the long run. I imagine P&O is far more healthy from a financial perspective than the debt ridden Brittany Ferries.

Dover to Calais will always remain a P&O strong hold, and will continue to be a money maker. Just look at how much traffic is carried.

Many companies have come and gone, but P&O have survived. A truly great company, with great heritage. Stena tried to topple P&O on the channel and failed, Seafrance tried... and failed.

Stena have plenty of doom and gloom, its just the management tends to throw money into its routes. P&O got rid of routes because they saw them a baggage, particularly with rising fuel prices.

This policy extends into many other sectors. Take BUPA, they flogged off BUPA Hospitals in 2007 to Spire Healthcare. This was a corporate decision, and resulted in their profits going up. This 'centralisation' policy, has served them well financially.


Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 31, 2016, 01:47:31 AM
P&O isn't going anywhere soon. Their have buckets more heritage than Stena, and pioneering successes, and innovation. I personally think the company is great.

I personally don't like the new look. But as a company, if their only route was Dover to Calais, they would probably still survive.

Just because they haven't fully rebranded the ships doesn't mean they don't have any direction for the brand. Oscar Wilde & Epsilon don't wear full Irish Ferries livery, but the latter is good company. Likewise Stena Europe never got the blue Stena stripes painted on.

P&O are doing well on the Dover route, and North Sea, it appears Larne is the only basket case the company is having to deal with.

Last year P&O Ferries reported a £13m profit. 2016 might be £18 million... 2017 might be £20 million. Stena make losses on the Irish Sea, but they use money from other resources to prop up the ferries operation.

DFDS have a mixed up look themselves with the former Norfolk Line ships wearing the 2010 DFDS colours, while the former Seafrance ships are in another.
The D class are in the process of being repainted, as you will see here http://www.dfdsconnects.com/ferries-undergo-an-extreme-makeover/ (http://www.dfdsconnects.com/ferries-undergo-an-extreme-makeover/) .

As for P&O's short term profits, thats exactly what keeps getting them into trouble - short-termism.  As a ferry company P&O don't have THAT much heritage.  Much of their "heritage" comes from companies they have taken over.  Just where are the P&O Normandy Ferries operations these days????  As for the cruise operation, as you well know its a totally separate entity.  Regarding their profit figures, until I see the 2015 accounts I couldn't possibly comment.  P&O are well known for their creative accounting practices - just ask HM Revenue and Customs! 

I can however tell you that P&O ferries limited (the Dover - Calais operation) actually made an operating loss of £3.6m including exceptional items (or a £1m profit excluding exceptional items) in 2014, which worked out at an £8.9m loss after tax.  Mind you, thats better than the £150.7m loss they made in 2013 after tax!  Given P&O's Irish Sea operation has been unprofitable for years, tell me how it is any different them finding resources from elsewhere to "prop up" that operation than anyone else?  The above numbers are available from the accounts filed at companies house (available online) if interested.

I love to hear of these pioneering P&O innovations that trump Stena's by the way!

The closure of the Troon route has been a PR disaster - in fact, they keep doing things to make it worse!  Very unhelpful of them to still have Larne - Troon on their website route map as well. 

Why would P&O support loss making operations? Many companies who have ditched the 'drains' on their profits have come out stronger in the long run. I imagine P&O is far more healthy from a financial perspective than the debt ridden Brittany Ferries.

Dover to Calais will always remain a P&O strong hold, and will continue to be a money maker. Just look at how much traffic is carried.

See above.  The profit margins are also said to be as low as 1%.  Thats a lot of traffic to make not a lot of money.  When will they ever pay back the cost of the Spirits for example?  You obviously don't know much about business strategy if you don't understand why companies keep loss making operations.  Do you think supermarkets make a profit on everything they sell as well?

Many companies have come and gone, but P&O have survived. A truly great company, with great heritage. Stena tried to topple P&O on the channel and failed, Seafrance tried... and failed.

Stena have plenty of doom and gloom, its just the management tends to throw money into its routes. P&O got rid of routes because they saw them a baggage, particularly with rising fuel prices.

Need I remind you that P&O where doing so well that they had to get taken over by Dubai world to survive?  Stena wanted out of Dover - Calais and actually initiated the split, in the eyes of many they actually did better out of the deal than P&O.  They got £150m remember, and the Harwich - Europort service for just £12m including the 3 vessels (meanwhile P&O shut down Dover - Zeebrugge).  Effectively P&O pulled out of UK to Holland/Belgium (except for the Hull operation).  This is the same Harwich - Europoort service that keeps expanding and supplements their core Hoek operation, which Stena chose to concentrate on rather than Dover - Calais. 

P&O dispose of routes without putting much effort into turning them around, Troon is just the latest example.  DFDS are about to give P&O a serious run for their money at Dover for the first time since the P&O Stena merger took away their biggest competitor.  DFDS are a company not only with the managerial expertise, but very deep pockets.  They have certainly shown they are willing to invest, and look to be sticking around for the long-term with a clear strategy.  P&O can even decide what their logo is!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: mrwtho07 on January 31, 2016, 11:08:24 AM
Even though I have a strong affection for P&O and regard it as my favourite ferry company, I totally agree with you Steven.
The P&O heritage really comes from the Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company, which doesn't exist anymore as a physical entity. The Cruises are owned by Carnival and have a completely new identity; the ports they owned were broken up and sold to different companies; their container division was sold to Maersk and the ferry operations sold to DP World.

P&O Ferries (by which I mean they're entire ferry operations and not just the current company) has had a long history, but as Steven says most of it came from mergers and acquisitions rather than anything else.  P&O Group took over the European Ferries Group in the late 80s and rebranded it P&O European Ferries in 1987 (hastened by the Herald disaster). This gave them operations at Felixstowe, Dover, Portsmouth and Cairnryan/Larne. 

P&O did have other ferry divisions, aside from P&O Normandy Ferries (which was sold to the EF Group in 1985).  The Orkney & Shetland ferry services had been in the control of P&O since the early 70s (after they took over the previous operator), which was rebranded P&O Scottish Ferries in 1989, and lasted until 2002 when Northlink took over the routes. In the 1970s, P&O developed PANDORO across the Irish Sea and there was P&O Ferrymasters which operated between Middlesbrough and Gothenburg from 1978-2001, when the vessel was sold to DFDS and the route was closed.   But the ferry division that has had the longest connection with P&O is North Sea Ferries, as the Group was one of the six shareholders that invested in the operation, at the company's inception 50 years ago. 

The 1990s saw all of the various divisions change with PANDORO and P&O EF (Cairnryan) becoming P&O Irish Sea; P&O EF (Dover) merging with Stena to become P&O Stena Line; North Sea Ferries and P&O EF (Felixstowe) becoming P&O North Sea Ferries (which also effectively included P&O Ferrymasters); and P&O Portsmouth becoming a brand name in its own right. In 2002, all of this merged to become P&O Ferries we know today.  Now we're talking about how it's currently doing profit wise, but one must remember that P&O Ferries are in a better position now than they were 12 years ago. This was when they had to go through a massive reconstruction of operations, which saw the culling of most of their Irish Sea and Portsmouth routes.  In the period since then, they have completely left Portsmouth and Troon, but opened a new route between Tilbury and Zeebrugge.

I was prepared to embrace the new look, even though I didn't like it that much, but given that they haven't rebranded ships when they had the opportunity (in contrast to DFDS), I can't do that anymore, as it seems to show that they are confused and aren't fully committed to anything, which is in itself a waste of money. If you're going for a new look stick with it and bring people on board as a result, don't give up mid way through (unless it's a PR disaster like British Airways) as you've just wasted money, which could've been better spent.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: market knowledge on January 31, 2016, 12:15:07 PM
if you look at detail on Liverpool Dublin
they have too many eggs in one basket
ferrymasters which has been a very poor performer again look at companies house data   how big a percentage of total traffic en route is theres
a successful freight route cannot depend on 4/5 key customers   needs a good range
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 31, 2016, 01:04:49 PM
P&O isn't going anywhere soon. Their have buckets more heritage than Stena, and pioneering successes, and innovation. I personally think the company is great.

I personally don't like the new look. But as a company, if their only route was Dover to Calais, they would probably still survive.

Just because they haven't fully rebranded the ships doesn't mean they don't have any direction for the brand. Oscar Wilde & Epsilon don't wear full Irish Ferries livery, but the latter is good company. Likewise Stena Europe never got the blue Stena stripes painted on.

P&O are doing well on the Dover route, and North Sea, it appears Larne is the only basket case the company is having to deal with.

Last year P&O Ferries reported a £13m profit. 2016 might be £18 million... 2017 might be £20 million. Stena make losses on the Irish Sea, but they use money from other resources to prop up the ferries operation.

DFDS have a mixed up look themselves with the former Norfolk Line ships wearing the 2010 DFDS colours, while the former Seafrance ships are in another.
The D class are in the process of being repainted, as you will see here http://www.dfdsconnects.com/ferries-undergo-an-extreme-makeover/ (http://www.dfdsconnects.com/ferries-undergo-an-extreme-makeover/) .

As for P&O's short term profits, thats exactly what keeps getting them into trouble - short-termism.  As a ferry company P&O don't have THAT much heritage.  Much of their "heritage" comes from companies they have taken over.  Just where are the P&O Normandy Ferries operations these days????  As for the cruise operation, as you well know its a totally separate entity.  Regarding their profit figures, until I see the 2015 accounts I couldn't possibly comment.  P&O are well known for their creative accounting practices - just ask HM Revenue and Customs! 

I can however tell you that P&O ferries limited (the Dover - Calais operation) actually made an operating loss of £3.6m including exceptional items (or a £1m profit excluding exceptional items) in 2014, which worked out at an £8.9m loss after tax.  Mind you, thats better than the £150.7m loss they made in 2013 after tax!  Given P&O's Irish Sea operation has been unprofitable for years, tell me how it is any different them finding resources from elsewhere to "prop up" that operation than anyone else?  The above numbers are available from the accounts filed at companies house (available online) if interested.

I love to hear of these pioneering P&O innovations that trump Stena's by the way!

The closure of the Troon route has been a PR disaster - in fact, they keep doing things to make it worse!  Very unhelpful of them to still have Larne - Troon on their website route map as well. 

Why would P&O support loss making operations? Many companies who have ditched the 'drains' on their profits have come out stronger in the long run. I imagine P&O is far more healthy from a financial perspective than the debt ridden Brittany Ferries.

Dover to Calais will always remain a P&O strong hold, and will continue to be a money maker. Just look at how much traffic is carried.

See above.  The profit margins are also said to be as low as 1%.  Thats a lot of traffic to make not a lot of money.  When will they ever pay back the cost of the Spirits for example?  You obviously don't know much about business strategy if you don't understand why companies keep loss making operations.  Do you think supermarkets make a profit on everything they sell as well?

Many companies have come and gone, but P&O have survived. A truly great company, with great heritage. Stena tried to topple P&O on the channel and failed, Seafrance tried... and failed.

Stena have plenty of doom and gloom, its just the management tends to throw money into its routes. P&O got rid of routes because they saw them a baggage, particularly with rising fuel prices.

Need I remind you that P&O where doing so well that they had to get taken over by Dubai world to survive?  Stena wanted out of Dover - Calais and actually initiated the split, in the eyes of many they actually did better out of the deal than P&O.  They got £150m remember, and the Harwich - Europort service for just £12m including the 3 vessels (meanwhile P&O shut down Dover - Zeebrugge).  Effectively P&O pulled out of UK to Holland/Belgium (except for the Hull operation).  This is the same Harwich - Europoort service that keeps expanding and supplements their core Hoek operation, which Stena chose to concentrate on rather than Dover - Calais. 

P&O dispose of routes without putting much effort into turning them around, Troon is just the latest example.  DFDS are about to give P&O a serious run for their money at Dover for the first time since the P&O Stena merger took away their biggest competitor.  DFDS are a company not only with the managerial expertise, but very deep pockets.  They have certainly shown they are willing to invest, and look to be sticking around for the long-term with a clear strategy.  P&O can even decide what their logo is!

Well Steven, I am currently doing an MA, and have plenty of expertise in Business. You seem very dismissive of the P&O's Heritage, have that be from the various companies they have bought, or the P&O Cruises division, that is no longer affiliated with P&O Ferries. Let me say a few names Canberra, Pride of Dover, Pride of Calais, Norland, Pride of York, Pride of Rotterdam. For their time these ships were very ahead of the competition. I think for a brand that is over 150 years old, they deserve a bit more respect.

Ask yourself a question? With so much freight being moved, so many passengers, on Dover to Calais alone, surely they can make a profit. It shouldn't be that difficult. Pride of Rotterdam carries a fair bit of freight, and I have never seen either ship empty. Hull is carrying more than Fishguard, which Stena having to pour money into to literally keep afloat.   

I think the company can be restructured to optimise performance. But to say P&O's management are somehow thick or green to the industry is not true. Helen Deeble, P&O's CEO has even been a director of a Stena company!

Also P&O have lots of off-shore companies, so it would be interesting to see where most of the profits are hiding.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: hhvferry on January 31, 2016, 01:27:51 PM
P&O's financial statements are interesting and there's certainly no doubt they are struggling to make money on the Irish Sea. Whether they can easily turn this around is an interesting question.

Their heritage is fine, although as mentioned in the sphere of ferry operations it is largely the heritage of acquired companies and hardly compares to the historic achievements of the Stena group. But what are their strategies for the future? Does it rely on the economy continuing to turn around or will aggressive cost-saving and the cessation of some of the most grievously loss-making services do the trick? As with Stena at Fishguard, it's hard to see how some of the existing operations can at present stomach the heavy expenditure in replacement tonnage which may be required at some stage.

In my experience over recent years quite a few P&O ships have had some really terrible maintenance aspects to some parts of the public areas to the degree that it is evident there is cost-saving going on - the Larne ships seem to be the exception on this front. Like the livery thing, it betrays a remarkable lack of care of the management of the P&O Ferries brand. What impression grotty, poorly-maintained ships and a discordant identity has on people's perception of the company is impossible to quantify but it is a strategy that certainly raises eyebrows.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 31, 2016, 01:57:03 PM
I personally think P&O will show improvement. They fortunately only have a few routes to manage, and most of them are doing well, getting good loads. The company and fleet will need to be restructured, but I have found maintenance on most vessels perfectly adequate. Pride of Bruges, Pride of York, Pride of Rotterdam, Pride of Hull are in very good condition. The Dover straits operation is challenging from a maintenance perspective as it is a 24/7 operation. A bit of rust isn't an issue, and P&O rarely have to cancel for technical problems.

When you look at the age of Stena's ships, Stena Saga (1980), Stena Europe (1981), Stena Danica (1983), Stena Nautica (1986), Stena Vision (1987), Stena Spirit (1987), Stena Jutlandica (1996), they have managed to keep going, so P&O should get easily another 8 years or so out of the current ships. Keeping a ship painted perfectly white doesn't mean mechanical parts etc aren't wearing out. Besides, Norland which was streaked in rust under P&O kept sailing in Italy for years. 

Stena have more of an age issue, and will probably be required to spend a fortune on maintenance or new builds.

Also regarding brand perception P&O stands for quality. The average person would have heard of P&O either the cruising division or ferries. Regards to the branding its interesting that the DFDS Newcastle ships have been left out. DFDS prior to the refits were looking hardly A1 condition.

The biggest problem for P&O North Sea and Irish Sea was fuel prices. The Pride of Rotterdam and Hull are expensive ships to operate. If the operation changed with a large efficient freighter running beside 1 Fincantieri (both Zeebrugge & Rotterdam), costs would come down. A vessel like Humber Viking would be a good option. Perhaps Rettig Bore might be able to assist?

Likewise consolidating the Dublin to Liverpool into two larger ships, like Humber Viking, would give more capacity that could be filled, and reduce fuel costs.

P&O Ferries have options, and lets not forget DP World have very deep pockets, and I'm sure they wouldn't let an asset go to the wall. I think the future of P&O lies more in leaner, more freight orientated operations.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 31, 2016, 09:58:28 PM
if you look at detail on Liverpool Dublin
they have too many eggs in one basket
ferrymasters which has been a very poor performer again look at companies house data   how big a percentage of total traffic en route is theres
a successful freight route cannot depend on 4/5 key customers   needs a good range

This is a huge issue on Larne - Cairnryan I am told; route is held to ransom by a few big contracts which have very low rates.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 01, 2016, 12:09:56 AM
Well Steven, I am currently doing an MA, and have plenty of expertise in Business. You seem very dismissive of the P&O's Heritage, have that be from the various companies they have bought, or the P&O Cruises division, that is no longer affiliated with P&O Ferries. Let me say a few names Canberra, Pride of Dover, Pride of Calais, Norland, Pride of York, Pride of Rotterdam. For their time these ships were very ahead of the competition. I think for a brand that is over 150 years old, they deserve a bit more respect.
Good for you.  Unfortunately studying or having a degree proves nothing but an ability to memorise and regurgitate information on demand.  I have met plenty of people with masters degrees in business or management who haven't got a clue on how to run any business.  Im not saying you don't, I am however saying that a degree proves little.

Pride of Dover and Calais - where mostly larger repeats of the Spirit class (themselves more groundbreaking, but owing much to the Free Enterprises that preceded them), and ordered by Townsend-Thoresen in any case.
Norland - was ordered when P&O was one of 6 shareholders in NSF - hardly a P&O ship!
Canberra - A cruise ship, not a ferry. 
Norsea/Norsun - again commissioned while P&O was only a partner, in this case albeit a 50% partner. 
Pride of Rotterdam/Hull - apart from being really big, please explain how they where groundbreaking.  Big stern loading ferry with cargo decks and passenger spaces isn't particularly ground breaking.

Quote
Ask yourself a question? With so much freight being moved, so many passengers, on Dover to Calais alone, surely they can make a profit. It shouldn't be that difficult. Pride of Rotterdam carries a fair bit of freight, and I have never seen either ship empty. Hull is carrying more than Fishguard, which Stena having to pour money into to literally keep afloat. 
As you should know, volume doesn't guarantee profit.  I have already stated that margins are low - this is a fact which has also been stated by P&O themselves.  Just who did pay for Spirit of France and Spirit of Britain? 

Quote
I think for a brand that is over 150 years old, they deserve a bit more respect.
As I have already stated, the P&O of today has little to do with the P&O of yesterday.  TBH I have a lot more respect for the likes of Irish Ferries/ICG than the current P&O operation.

Quote
Hull is carrying more than Fishguard, which Stena having to pour money into to literally keep afloat.   

That isn't exactly an achievement....  Just remember that Fishguard is being maintained by a vessel which cost Stena nothing.  She was already paid for when she joined the route.  Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull cost substantially more than nothing and are around 10-20 years from being paid for by P&O's own accounting practices.  So of your two examples, who is really pumping cash into their operation?

Quote
Stena have more of an age issue, and will probably be required to spend a fortune on maintenance or new builds.
Just wait and see.  Stena don't pay top price, they wait and purchase at the right price and often in bulk.  Don't be surprised if an order is placed for multiple new builds for more than one route built to a similar design which is easily adapted - a Stena hallmark.

Quote
Also P&O have lots of off-shore companies, so it would be interesting to see where most of the profits are hiding.
A company to be admired, indeed :s.

Quote
P&O Ferries have options, and lets not forget DP World have very deep pockets, and I'm sure they wouldn't let an asset go to the wall. I think the future of P&O lies more in leaner, more freight orientated operations.
As a pretty ruthless bunch, I'm sure P&O's sugar daddy isn't exactly delighted with the performance of some elements of the company dating all the way back to the takeover.  Rumours of the ferries division being sold off have been about ever since the takeover (with it said DP World only really wanted the lucrative ports division).  Problem is, who would buy it?

Quote
Also regarding brand perception P&O stands for quality. The average person would have heard of P&O either the cruising division or ferries. Regards to the branding its interesting that the DFDS Newcastle ships have been left out. DFDS prior to the refits were looking hardly A1 condition.
It may stand for quality in your eyes, but in the eyes of many it is increasingly less the case.  At least DFDS can brand ships on the same route the same way when they have the opportunity!  Unlike P&O's Liverpool - Dublin and Dover - Calais operations.

Quote
I think the company can be restructured to optimise performance. But to say P&O's management are somehow thick or green to the industry is not true. Helen Deeble, P&O's CEO has even been a director of a Stena company!
Yes, her position as a finance director explains many P&O actions under her leadership.  Such as not spending money on paint, not spending money on maintenance, not spending money on new signage (anyone who cares to visit Larne can still follow the signs, complete with old logo, to the Troon ferry btw) :p.  Of course the company can be restructured (yet again!) to improve performance, alas not under the current management team IMO and not without a clear direction and strategy for the further which is backed and implemented by all of the various divisions.

As a footnote I think I should add that I am not saying that any company is perfect or doesn't make errors.  Hell, Stena make quite a few of their own for example.  However, in my (and that of others) opinion, P&O's ferry operation just seems to be becoming more and more a shadow of their former selves.  The way they have treated the withdrawal of the Troon service is like a case study on what not to do - what airline would put out a full media release when they close a route, rather than quietly drop it?  Or put the fact they have dropped said route into all following marketing correspondence with customers, including emails about their 20% off sale?  The latest customer survey they have sent out (which is hosted on survey monkey no less!!!!!), looks like it was written by a secondary school pupil!

EDIT:  I forgot to say, that should this discussion continue it should probably be in a new thread rather than in fleet movements :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Matt73 on February 06, 2016, 10:32:13 PM
Well Steven, I am currently doing an MA, and have plenty of expertise in Business. You seem very dismissive of the P&O's Heritage, have that be from the various companies they have bought, or the P&O Cruises division, that is no longer affiliated with P&O Ferries. Let me say a few names Canberra, Pride of Dover, Pride of Calais, Norland, Pride of York, Pride of Rotterdam. For their time these ships were very ahead of the competition. I think for a brand that is over 150 years old, they deserve a bit more respect.
Good for you.  Unfortunately studying or having a degree proves nothing but an ability to memorise and regurgitate information on demand.  I have met plenty of people with masters degrees in business or management who haven't got a clue on how to run any business.  Im not saying you don't, I am however saying that a degree proves little.

Pride of Dover and Calais - where mostly larger repeats of the Spirit class (themselves more groundbreaking, but owing much to the Free Enterprises that preceded them), and ordered by Townsend-Thoresen in any case.
Norland - was ordered when P&O was one of 6 shareholders in NSF - hardly a P&O ship!
Canberra - A cruise ship, not a ferry. 
Norsea/Norsun - again commissioned while P&O was only a partner, in this case albeit a 50% partner. 
Pride of Rotterdam/Hull - apart from being really big, please explain how they where groundbreaking.  Big stern loading ferry with cargo decks and passenger spaces isn't particularly ground breaking.

Quote
Ask yourself a question? With so much freight being moved, so many passengers, on Dover to Calais alone, surely they can make a profit. It shouldn't be that difficult. Pride of Rotterdam carries a fair bit of freight, and I have never seen either ship empty. Hull is carrying more than Fishguard, which Stena having to pour money into to literally keep afloat. 
As you should know, volume doesn't guarantee profit.  I have already stated that margins are low - this is a fact which has also been stated by P&O themselves.  Just who did pay for Spirit of France and Spirit of Britain? 

Quote
I think for a brand that is over 150 years old, they deserve a bit more respect.
As I have already stated, the P&O of today has little to do with the P&O of yesterday.  TBH I have a lot more respect for the likes of Irish Ferries/ICG than the current P&O operation.

Quote
Hull is carrying more than Fishguard, which Stena having to pour money into to literally keep afloat.   

That isn't exactly an achievement....  Just remember that Fishguard is being maintained by a vessel which cost Stena nothing.  She was already paid for when she joined the route.  Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull cost substantially more than nothing and are around 10-20 years from being paid for by P&O's own accounting practices.  So of your two examples, who is really pumping cash into their operation?

Quote
Stena have more of an age issue, and will probably be required to spend a fortune on maintenance or new builds.
Just wait and see.  Stena don't pay top price, they wait and purchase at the right price a
nd often in bulk.  Don't be surprised if an order is placed for multiple new builds for more than one route built to a similar design which is easily adapted - a Stena hallmark.

Quote
Also P&O have lots of off-shore companies, so it would be interesting to see where most of the profits are hiding.
A company to be admired, indeed :s.

Quote
P&O Ferries have options, and lets not forget DP World have very deep pockets, and I'm sure they wouldn't let an asset go to the wall. I think the future of P&O lies more in leaner, more freight orientated operations.
As a pretty ruthless bunch, I'm sure P&O's sugar daddy isn't exactly delighted with the performance of some elements of the company dating all the way back to the takeover.  Rumours of the ferries division being sold off have been about ever since the takeover (with it said DP World only really wanted the lucrative ports division).  Problem is, who would buy it?

Quote
Also regarding brand perception P&O stands for quality. The average person would have heard of P&O either the cruising division or ferries. Regards to the branding its interesting that the DFDS Newcastle ships have been left out. DFDS prior to the refits were looking hardly A1 condition.
It may stand for quality in your eyes, but in the eyes of many it is increasingly less the case.  At least DFDS can brand ships on the same route the same way when they have the opportunity!  Unlike P&O's Liverpool - Dublin and Dover - Calais operations.

Quote
I think the company can be restructured to optimise performance. But to say P&O's management are somehow thick or green to the industry is not true. Helen Deeble, P&O's CEO has even been a director of a Stena company!
Yes, her position as a finance director explains many P&O actions under her leadership.  Such as not spending money on paint, not spending money on maintenance, not spending money on new signage (anyone who cares to visit Larne can still follow the signs, complete with old logo, to the Troon ferry btw) :p.  Of course the company can be restructured (yet again!) to improve performance, alas not under the current management team IMO and not without a clear direction and strategy for the further which is backed and implemented by all of the various divisions.

As a footnote I think I should add that I am not saying that any company is perfect or doesn't make errors.  Hell, Stena make quite a few of their own for example.  However, in my (and that of others) opinion, P&O's ferry operation just seems to be becoming more and more a shadow of their former selves.  The way they have treated the withdrawal of the Troon service is like a case study on what not to do - what airline would put out a full media release when they close a route, rather than quietly drop it?  Or put the fact they have dropped said route into all following marketing correspondence with customers, including emails about their 20% off sale?  The latest customer survey they have sent out (which is hosted on survey monkey no less!!!!!), looks like it was written by a secondary school pupil!

EDIT:  I forgot to say, that should this discussion continue it should probably be in a new thread rather than in fleet movements :)

I have read this thread with great fascination.  Steven, I tend to your point of you and your arguments are well made.  One other point to remember is that P&O was a large stock market listed company, controlled by institutional investors.  They pushed for the company for to be broken up, if I recall correctly, as they considered it to have too many varied interests: containers ships (which went to Maersk), Princess Cruises (which went to Carnival) and Bovis (which became a separate business).  The rest, including the ferries, went to Dubai.  Stena Line's parent company is controlled by the founder's family so it has been able to invest for the long-term and maintains its wide variety of interests, without being overly troubled with institutional investors pushing for maximum short-term profts to drive up dividend payments. This is the curse of modern capitalism, in my opinion, and it's interesting that the majority shareholding in Maersk is controlled by the founder's family too, albeit through Trusts. 

Having observed the ferry industry for 30 years, it has always seemed to me that P&O ferries is a very conservative company.  They have pulled out of numerous routes on the basis that they can't make them pay, yet almost all of them have seen other operators fill the void with relative ease.  Stena have had the last laugh over the English channel venture; I well remember a conversation with one of the captains of the current Stena Hollandica about the Europoort terminal.  He said that they (Stena) could not believe that P&O handed it all over to them for so little. 

As you say, Stena are not without their faults.  They bought Sealink at a vastly inflated price in 1990 and, were it not for the founder's wealth, it would have destroyed the entire business.  Then there was the disastrous experience building the now Gdansk route ships in Poland in the early 1980s.

Matt






Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 25, 2016, 10:28:21 PM
Pride of Kent has been looking more than a little worse for wear lately (hopefully this Facebook link works for everyone)

(https://scontent-lhr3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xtp1/t31.0-8/12496363_983759115049905_4446366832645144278_o.jpg) (Image © Ray Goodfellow)
Thankfully she's currently tucked up at Damen Dunkerque.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on February 25, 2016, 10:49:15 PM
might some fresh paint applied !
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on February 25, 2016, 10:51:50 PM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 26, 2016, 12:34:54 AM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Ive seen ships being scrapped looking better than poor old Kent there.  The rust around the MES lines is to be expected, but some pretty bad patches on the bow doors there by the looks of things.  Hopefully she will get a full repaint.  The guys in France on Facebook will probably have pictures in the next couple of days - looks like she is adjacent to Malo Seaways (which appears to still be afloat). 

By P&O's own standards the Darwins due replacement in the next few years.  It'll be interesting to see what with. Personally I don't think it will be a repeat of the Spirits, but thats just speculation.

European Endeavour should be dry docked in the next few months, anyone want to run a book on what livery she will emerge in ;) ?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steam Packet on February 26, 2016, 01:23:51 AM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Ive seen ships being scrapped looking better than poor old Kent there.  The rust around the MES lines is to be expected, but some pretty bad patches on the bow doors there by the looks of things.  Hopefully she will get a full repaint.  The guys in France on Facebook will probably have pictures in the next couple of days - looks like she is adjacent to Malo Seaways (which appears to still be afloat). 

By P&O's own standards the Darwins due replacement in the next few years.  It'll be interesting to see what with. Personally I don't think it will be a repeat of the Spirits, but thats just speculation.

European Endeavour should be dry docked in the next few months, anyone want to run a book on what livery she will emerge in ;) ?

The Darwins will be renamed Pride of Cairnryan & Pride of Larne and cascaded to the North Channel. European Causeway & European Highlander will be lengthened and transferred to Liverpool to Dublin.

Oh and European Endeavour will be out looking stunning in the new P&O Livery, and completing a very smart Irish Sea Fleet :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on February 26, 2016, 07:10:21 AM
Quote from: Steam Packet link=topic=284.msg11655#msg11655

The Darwins will be renamed Pride of Cairnryan & Pride of Larne and cascaded to the North Channel. European Causeway & European Highlander will be lengthened and transferred to Liverpool to Dublin.


You can't be serious about the Pride of Kent and Pride of Canterbury ending up at Larne - for two reasons. 1) why would they replace two ships with two older ships? 2) at 180m long I believe they would be too long to fit the berths at Larne! I also think they might not have the required 5m headroom for operation on the north channel but could stand to be corrected on that one.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on February 26, 2016, 07:16:34 AM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Ive seen ships being scrapped looking better than poor old Kent there.  The rust around the MES lines is to be expected, but some pretty bad patches on the bow doors there by the looks of things.  Hopefully she will get a full repaint.  The guys in France on Facebook will probably have pictures in the next couple of days - looks like she is adjacent to Malo Seaways (which appears to still be afloat). 

By P&O's own standards the Darwins due replacement in the next few years.  It'll be interesting to see what with. Personally I don't think it will be a repeat of the Spirits, but thats just speculation.

European Endeavour should be dry docked in the next few months, anyone want to run a book on what livery she will emerge in ;) ?

Wow.  Just wow
The Darwins will be renamed Pride of Cairnryan & Pride of Larne and cascaded to the North Channel. European Causeway & European Highlander will be lengthened and transferred to Liverpool to Dublin.

Oh and European Endeavour will be out looking stunning in the new P&O Livery, and completing a very smart Irish Sea Fleet :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on February 26, 2016, 02:01:19 PM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Ive seen ships being scrapped looking better than poor old Kent there.  The rust around the MES lines is to be expected, but some pretty bad patches on the bow doors there by the looks of things.  Hopefully she will get a full repaint.  The guys in France on Facebook will probably have pictures in the next couple of days - looks like she is adjacent to Malo Seaways (which appears to still be afloat). 

By P&O's own standards the Darwins due replacement in the next few years.  It'll be interesting to see what with. Personally I don't think it will be a repeat of the Spirits, but thats just speculation.

European Endeavour should be dry docked in the next few months, anyone want to run a book on what livery she will emerge in ;) ?

They have aged alright. In the past few years externally streaks rust have been becoming prevalent, but it does happen with an intensive schedule, quick turnarounds, and rather basic 'express' dry docking schedules. Stena Adventurer, Stena Europe, and European Endeavour are looking pretty tired these days.

Back in 2003 they looked really good. Personally I think the 'POferries.com' livery looked better, bit more professional, but their interiors have always looked lovely. To think these were drastically different freighters (European Pathway and European Highway), it is easy to forget.

Regards Larne - Cairnryan, berthing issues and increased running costs would probably mean its a no goer. However if P&O moved to Belfast, they would be good ships to rival the Stena Superfasts. Work would be needed, bit of modernisation, but the passenger areas all date back to 2003, so there not exactly ancient. Stena Europe is 11 years older than the Darwins, so both ships could keep going for a good few years yet. European Highlander & European Causeway are likely cheaper to operate so probably be better options.



Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 26, 2016, 03:53:52 PM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Ive seen ships being scrapped looking better than poor old Kent there.  The rust around the MES lines is to be expected, but some pretty bad patches on the bow doors there by the looks of things.  Hopefully she will get a full repaint.  The guys in France on Facebook will probably have pictures in the next couple of days - looks like she is adjacent to Malo Seaways (which appears to still be afloat). 

By P&O's own standards the Darwins due replacement in the next few years.  It'll be interesting to see what with. Personally I don't think it will be a repeat of the Spirits, but thats just speculation.

European Endeavour should be dry docked in the next few months, anyone want to run a book on what livery she will emerge in ;) ?

They have aged alright. In the past few years externally streaks rust have been becoming prevalent, but it does happen with an intensive schedule, quick turnarounds, and rather basic 'express' dry docking schedules. Stena Adventurer, Stena Europe, and European Endeavour are looking pretty tired these days.

Back in 2003 they looked really good. Personally I think the 'POferries.com' livery looked better, bit more professional, but their interiors have always looked lovely. To think these were drastically different freighters (European Pathway and European Highway), it is easy to forget.

Regards Larne - Cairnryan, berthing issues and increased running costs would probably mean its a no goer. However if P&O moved to Belfast, they would be good ships to rival the Stena Superfasts. Work would be needed, bit of modernisation, but the passenger areas all date back to 2003, so there not exactly ancient. Stena Europe is 11 years older than the Darwins, so both ships could keep going for a good few years yet. European Highlander & European Causeway are likely cheaper to operate so probably be better options.
Even in the hypothetical situation that P&O did move to Belfast (surely it would have been easy to switch the Troon route to test the waters if there was interest, especially given Secant's far higher carryings when they competed with P&O to Troon) Cairnryan could prove problematic.  While the berth itself could possibly be extended, its not the easiest port to berth at.  I understand things are tight as they are so with larger ships with a deeper draught things would be even more tricky.  Theres also the fact that they'd further add to the overcapacity issue on the corridor of course.  From a running costs perspective it may be possible to run them on 2 engines but the on-board services side of things would be costly.

P&O's own policy is to replace ships on the strait at around the 25 year old mark.  Given the intensity of their schedule I'd imagine they'd need a lot of technical work to keep them operational beyond 30 years (theres a lot of start-stopping for example on their schedule which accelerates wear on mechanical components compared to a 3 or 4 hour crossing a few times a day), and the vehicle decks are probably wearing quite thin as well if they haven't been renewed.  Even if they did fit I don't think the outlay required to prolong their lives could be justified given the limited revenue earning potential.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on February 26, 2016, 06:01:27 PM
Interesting picture of one of the Zeebrugge twins on Facebook de other day showing a very patchy white paint job.  Obviously someone's tried to paint over the rust spots which have got recovered in rust streaks.  Looks like a very bad 80's video game graphic!  Apparently she's being sorted later in the year.  Would surely have made sense to do all of this work in the "[email protected] season?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on February 28, 2016, 01:38:49 PM
Dover to Calais is a very tough, 24/7 operation. I imagine they just want to get her back into service as quick as possible. The longer she is in dry dock, more custom is being lost, likely to DFDS.

Despite having quite regular dry-dockings P&O never seem to give the ships a full 'head to toe' repaint. Its always just a few flicks of a paintbrush. Back in 2007 you can see on the MES lines, and other areas, where the rust streaks were being left build up. Rather than address the cause of the rust, P&O seem to just paint over it, and 6 months later most of them are back again!

The Pride of Burgundy also has the same problem. On Pride of Burgundy, windows seem to be giving problems as well. Stena Europe too has also been suffering from rusty windows. I think Stena might do a more intensive repair given she is off service for quite some time, but who knows! I would imagine when Stena Europe finally leaves Stena, she will probably spend a few years in the med before she hits the beach.

Regards the central corridor workhorse, European Endeavour, it will be interesting to see what livery she will get. The house flag on the funnels are looking faded, so we might see a new one. But regards to the hull, likely be just a repaint. Might get new P&O typeface to blend in with Norbay and Norbank.

 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 01, 2016, 01:04:02 AM
Dover to Calais is a very tough, 24/7 operation. I imagine they just want to get her back into service as quick as possible. The longer she is in dry dock, more custom is being lost, likely to DFDS.

Despite having quite regular dry-dockings P&O never seem to give the ships a full 'head to toe' repaint. Its always just a few flicks of a paintbrush. Back in 2007 you can see on the MES lines, and other areas, where the rust streaks were being left build up. Rather than address the cause of the rust, P&O seem to just paint over it, and 6 months later most of them are back again!

The Pride of Burgundy also has the same problem. On Pride of Burgundy, windows seem to be giving problems as well. Stena Europe too has also been suffering from rusty windows. I think Stena might do a more intensive repair given she is off service for quite some time, but who knows! I would imagine when Stena Europe finally leaves Stena, she will probably spend a few years in the med before she hits the beach.

Regards the central corridor workhorse, European Endeavour, it will be interesting to see what livery she will get. The house flag on the funnels are looking faded, so we might see a new one. But regards to the hull, likely be just a repaint. Might get new P&O typeface to blend in with Norbay and Norbank.

 
DFDS currently have Calais Seaways off service as well remember.  She has already been repainted top to bottom in the new livery btw.  Its a shame P&O won't do the the same IMO - after all, they are the guys with all the ships, Seaway was spare not so long ago as well!  Stena Europe is getting (or already has had) a full repaint this year.  If we compare like for like, Seatruck's tonnage looks better than P&O's - and they don't have to be too concerned about tarnishing their passenger brand!!!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: LiverpoolIrishLiam on March 01, 2016, 03:40:49 AM
Tough old girls are the 'Darwins'. I think they are great ships to sail on. To be honest regardless what anyone thinks of P&O these are really nice vessels. Comfortable ships, and for 2003 their interiors were cutting edge, and in many respects set the standard.
Ive seen ships being scrapped looking better than poor old Kent there.  The rust around the MES lines is to be expected, but some pretty bad patches on the bow doors there by the looks of things.  Hopefully she will get a full repaint.  The guys in France on Facebook will probably have pictures in the next couple of days - looks like she is adjacent to Malo Seaways (which appears to still be afloat). 

By P&O's own standards the Darwins due replacement in the next few years.  It'll be interesting to see what with. Personally I don't think it will be a repeat of the Spirits, but thats just speculation.

European Endeavour should be dry docked in the next few months, anyone want to run a book on what livery she will emerge in ;) ?

The Darwins will be renamed Pride of Cairnryan & Pride of Larne and cascaded to the North Channel. European Causeway & European Highlander will be lengthened and transferred to Liverpool to Dublin.

Oh and European Endeavour will be out looking stunning in the new P&O Livery, and completing a very smart Irish Sea Fleet :)


Is there any truth in this? Or is just speculation?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on March 01, 2016, 06:44:56 AM
Speculation based on nothing factual I'd suggest. Like I said, Pride of Kent and Pride of Canterbury would NOT fit in Larne! According to their website the max length of vessel that can be handled on any of the berths in Larne is 170m and the Darwins are 180m.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 01, 2016, 12:20:10 PM
Dover to Calais is a very tough, 24/7 operation. I imagine they just want to get her back into service as quick as possible. The longer she is in dry dock, more custom is being lost, likely to DFDS.

Despite having quite regular dry-dockings P&O never seem to give the ships a full 'head to toe' repaint. Its always just a few flicks of a paintbrush. Back in 2007 you can see on the MES lines, and other areas, where the rust streaks were being left build up. Rather than address the cause of the rust, P&O seem to just paint over it, and 6 months later most of them are back again!

The Pride of Burgundy also has the same problem. On Pride of Burgundy, windows seem to be giving problems as well. Stena Europe too has also been suffering from rusty windows. I think Stena might do a more intensive repair given she is off service for quite some time, but who knows! I would imagine when Stena Europe finally leaves Stena, she will probably spend a few years in the med before she hits the beach.

Regards the central corridor workhorse, European Endeavour, it will be interesting to see what livery she will get. The house flag on the funnels are looking faded, so we might see a new one. But regards to the hull, likely be just a repaint. Might get new P&O typeface to blend in with Norbay and Norbank.

 
DFDS currently have Calais Seaways off service as well remember.  She has already been repainted top to bottom in the new livery btw.  Its a shame P&O won't do the the same IMO - after all, they are the guys with all the ships, Seaway was spare not so long ago as well!  Stena Europe is getting (or already has had) a full repaint this year.  If we compare like for like, Seatruck's tonnage looks better than P&O's - and they don't have to be too concerned about tarnishing their passenger brand!!!

I think their just worried about onboard experience with regards to Dover to Calais. DFDS seem to be taking a good bit of inspiration from the Spirits with regard to the Seafrance ships interior, in my opinion. The new DFDS livery looks very much like the 80s / early 90s P&O livery.

http://www.shipphotos.co.uk/images/prideofbilbao2.jpg

http://www.dfdsconnects.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/DFDS-Dunkerque-Seaways-Dover-Jan-16-006_John-Bryant.jpg

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: hhvferry on March 01, 2016, 01:14:45 PM
DFDS have used the same interior designers as P&O used on the Spirits which is why they have that looks. It's a bit safe and bland unfortunately, at least in the pictures seen so far, and to my eyes not a patch on the original Berlioz outfit (Rodin less so).

For what it's worth, although I'm quite fond of them the Darwin twins were not really cutting edge when introduced. They were built on freighter hulls which were barely strong enough to carry the weight of the required superstructure so the plans had to be scaled down somewhat during the concept stage. Upstairs in their better parts they took cues from the earlier Rodin but without the expensive bits. In the less imaginative areas they just rehashed existing P&O ideas. The Club Lounges were and are by far their best feature. In some parts now they look rather shabby unfortunately.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 01, 2016, 04:26:32 PM
Might be some logic to P&O only doing minor paint jobs.

DFDS are shedding their paint already!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 02, 2016, 06:21:00 AM
From memory the original plan was to replace the original spirit class with new builds, but P&O took the cheap option instead and did a Fantasia/Fiesta job on some freighters that they had spare with little prospect of moving elsewhere or selling instead.  From the pictures I have seen the DFDS ships look a lot more Scandinavian inside that P&O's Spirits though.

Might be some logic to P&O only doing minor paint jobs.

DFDS are shedding their paint already!
Have a look again at the picture someone posted of one of the Darwins above. When was the last time you saw any DFDS ship look anywhere near as bad as that?  The only logic behind it is cost cutting - like a lot with P&O these days! 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 02, 2016, 11:45:57 AM
In all fairness the Larne ships are impeccable. No rust, very well looked after, better than their half sister, Stena Nordica.

I agree though the Darwins are looking tired. But these ships were only built new in 1992, and had major rebuilds in 2003. I'm sure if someone wanted them, they could give them a good refit and drydocking (removing the old paint  addressing sources of rust) and they would look very decent. Stena Navigator looked fairly rough under Seafrance, but Stena fixed her up nicely.

The reason why the Darwins are looking a bit tired is because they aren't given intensive dry-dockings. Rather they get a quick spruce up and their back on the beat. I think P&O just want to get them back into service asap. Personally I think it would be better if P&O gave the ships more time off for work. With the right maintenance they could get another 10 years out of these ships. Pride of Calais and Pride of Dover were hardly ancient when they hit the beach. When you think of the age of some Italian and Corsican owned vessels, or even the likes of Stena Europe and Stena Danica, P&O seem to be wasting more money on new builds, rather than taking more care of the Dover ships.

If you look to Hull, the Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull look in far better condition, so this isn't a total P&O problem, some ships are very well looked after.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on March 04, 2016, 12:27:59 PM
DFDS have used the same interior designers as P&O used on the Spirits which is why they have that looks. It's a bit safe and bland unfortunately, at least in the pictures seen so far, and to my eyes not a patch on the original Berlioz outfit (Rodin less so).

For what it's worth, although I'm quite fond of them the Darwin twins were not really cutting edge when introduced. They were built on freighter hulls which were barely strong enough to carry the weight of the required superstructure so the plans had to be scaled down somewhat during the concept stage. Upstairs in their better parts they took cues from the earlier Rodin but without the expensive bits. In the less imaginative areas they just rehashed existing P&O ideas. The Club Lounges were and are by far their best feature. In some parts now they look rather shabby unfortunately.

They look very disappointing in pictures.  Relegating sea travel to price sensitivity only.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 04, 2016, 11:18:59 PM
To be fair to P&O the Dover fleet are used on possibly the most intensive schedule you could create for ferries and it is no surprise that they look tired prior to refit and the fact that they designed for port and voyage specific use restricts there future deployment.

Most other ferry schedules allow for some touch up or exterior painting, I am sure Dover Calais does not give much time for thus.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 05, 2016, 11:15:34 AM
Reading through here it seems that P&O might be running at near their capacity.  With Seatruck adding a third ship between Dublin and Liverpool will P&O do anything to try and keep or gain customers?  It's been a while since they made any changes.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 05, 2016, 09:03:33 PM
Its hard call. P&O would probably have to buy or charter. I imagine a dedicated freighter would have been handy (Norcape would have been an ideal stop gap 4th ship). P&O have the facilities, berth slots, and demand.

I think a sole freighter is the best option, a vessel like Bore Song or Bore Sea would do nicely.

Option B - Charter out Norbay & Norbank and replace them with newer, larger passenger freighters eg Europalink.
http://ferry-site.dk/ferry.php?id=9319442&lang=en

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: market knowledge on March 06, 2016, 12:29:04 PM
not sure p and o have a working strategy
without a working strategy is it possible to have a long term commitment
long term policy can sometimes mean short term pain
the really successful companys have vision

cairnryan ships are under utilised and find it hard to compete against stena on destination ie Belfast/passenger facilities/hub impact
perhaps 1 ship could be released and replaced with a ro/ro 12 driver ship  loch ryan unaccompagnied market definitely increasing

larne needs new services
there is a market to compete ex Liverpool to larne with birkinhead Belfast  but needs speed c 22knots
realistically needs 2 ships
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on March 06, 2016, 01:12:01 PM
not sure p and o have a working strategy
without a working strategy is it possible to have a long term commitment
long term policy can sometimes mean short term pain
the really successful companys have vision

cairnryan ships are under utilised and find it hard to compete against stena on destination ie Belfast/passenger facilities/hub impact
perhaps 1 ship could be released and replaced with a ro/ro 12 driver ship  loch ryan unaccompagnied market definitely increasing

larne needs new services
there is a market to compete ex Liverpool to larne with birkinhead Belfast  but needs speed c 22knots
realistically needs 2 ships

All sensible ideas but will never happen.

Larne is very, very quiet. Though there is still a good total volume to Cairnryan if they just reduced the schedule so maybe one passenger ship on 4 trips a trip and a roro on one or two trips a day would be sufficient..
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 07, 2016, 02:42:35 AM
Pride of Kent is getting the new P&O livery.  Just to confuse the image even more!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 08, 2016, 01:56:41 PM
Its hard call. P&O would probably have to buy or charter. I imagine a dedicated freighter would have been handy (Norcape would have been an ideal stop gap 4th ship). P&O have the facilities, berth slots, and demand.

I think a sole freighter is the best option, a vessel like Bore Song or Bore Sea would do nicely.

Option B - Charter out Norbay & Norbank and replace them with newer, larger passenger freighters eg Europalink.
http://ferry-site.dk/ferry.php?id=9319442&lang=en
That would require them to actually spend money on de Irish Services though.  Or they could just pretend like they have with European Causeway!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 08, 2016, 04:49:50 PM

Quote
New Ferry Rest Facilities for Accompanied Freight Trailer Drivers Aid Tachometer Rest Times

Investment in Development of Port Terminal Almost Complete

Drivers of accompanied trailers using ferry services will always gravitate to the most comfortable facilities, both during a crossing and in the often long periods waiting for a vessel. Now P&O Ferries has improved things for freight drivers using its Liverpool – Dublin route with a major investment in a redesign of the layout at the English port.
Development works began at the start of the year and are scheduled to be completed shortly after Easter. The capacity of the safe parking area on the terminal, where drivers can access showers and rest room facilities, is being increased from 35 vehicles to 70 and crucially, drivers in this area can now designate the time spent waiting in the terminal as a rest period on their Tachometer.

Previously drivers were obliged to leave the devices showing they were either on a break or on ‘other work’ until they were physically on the vessel. This could mean delays as they would be forced to subsequently take a full rest period even if they had been asleep in their cab. By law, HGV drivers have to complete a continuous nine hour rest period during each working day. P&O Ferries' Port Manager at Liverpool, Brian McFarlane, said:

"This is a major improvement for the route as the voyage between Liverpool and Dublin takes eight hours. With an extra hour's rest while they wait to board the ship, all drivers can continue their onward journeys as soon as they arrive in Dublin. A key part of the attractiveness of the route is the end-to-end journey times for loads which might have originated in central or eastern Europe.

“With an extra 30 plus drivers able to designate the whole of their time spent with us as a rest period, we are providing a better service to an additional 30 plus customers per sailing. This increase will pretty much ensure that all accompanied freight vehicles travelling to Dublin can be accommodated on the terminal."
http://www.handyshippingguide.com/shipping-news/new-ferry-rest-facilities-for-accompanied-freight-trailer-drivers-aid-tachometer-rest-times_7026

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 08, 2016, 10:11:47 PM
Its hard call. P&O would probably have to buy or charter. I imagine a dedicated freighter would have been handy (Norcape would have been an ideal stop gap 4th ship). P&O have the facilities, berth slots, and demand.

I think a sole freighter is the best option, a vessel like Bore Song or Bore Sea would do nicely.

Option B - Charter out Norbay & Norbank and replace them with newer, larger passenger freighters eg Europalink.
http://ferry-site.dk/ferry.php?id=9319442&lang=en
That would require them to actually spend money on de Irish Services though.  Or they could just pretend like they have with European Causeway!

If the investment decision pays off they might be up for it. Larne unfortunately is struggling, they are fortunate though to have youthful enough ships. Stena Caledonia was 30 when she left Stena. The P&O twins are only 14 / 16 years old. Both ships have another 15 years at least before they hit the beach.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 14, 2016, 12:30:37 PM
PoK looking much better now in this image posted to Facebook by Julien Carpentier
(https://scontent-lhr3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xft1/t31.0-8/12841252_442483985945449_7842377233463090516_o.jpg)

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 14, 2016, 01:44:51 PM
Very smart me thinks  ;). I like that they have finally removed the blue strip above the bow doors.

Full repaint too! P&O must be splashing out.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 20, 2016, 12:03:05 PM
Very smart me thinks  ;). I like that they have finally removed the blue strip above the bow doors.

Full repaint too! P&O must be splashing out.
Tesco must of had de value paint on offer
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on March 20, 2016, 12:36:02 PM
Did anyone hear rumours of new ships for P&O Dover-Calais?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 20, 2016, 12:45:07 PM
An old mate said dey want to order another 2 spirits so the fleet is all the same
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 20, 2016, 08:18:09 PM
Did anyone hear rumours of new ships for P&O Dover-Calais?
There have been rumours of another pair of the spirit class being built almost since they entered service.  Of course, that would allow both Darwins and Burgundy to be replaced with an overall increase in capacity.  The Spirits are far from perfect of course, but I dont see P&O going totally back to the drawing board given the amount of investment already in the existing design.  It could be interesting to see where the next new builds are built. One thing is for certain though, it won't be Rauma.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 21, 2016, 09:06:31 AM
Pride of Canterbury was off service for much of yesterday, reportedly with engine problems.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 21, 2016, 12:02:17 PM
Very smart me thinks  ;). I like that they have finally removed the blue strip above the bow doors.

Full repaint too! P&O must be splashing out.
Tesco must of had de value paint on offer

Judging how much the DFDS ships shed their paint it might be an improvement! The Seafrance twins have already started shedding.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 21, 2016, 06:05:46 PM
Very smart me thinks  ;). I like that they have finally removed the blue strip above the bow doors.

Full repaint too! P&O must be splashing out.
Tesco must of had de value paint on offer

Judging how much the DFDS ships shed their paint it might be an improvement! The Seafrance twins have already started shedding.
Twins?  Dey aren't really even sisters
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 21, 2016, 08:10:24 PM
I would consider them close sisters. Not carbon copies.  Very similar above the water line, interiors were different, but Berlioz was delivered later from a French yard rather than Rauma.

Pride of Calais and Pride of Dover were not perfect sisters, but have been often referred to as twins  ;).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 22, 2016, 08:48:00 AM
I would consider them close sisters. Not carbon copies.  Very similar above the water line, interiors were different, but Berlioz was delivered later from a French yard rather than Rauma.

Pride of Calais and Pride of Dover were not perfect sisters, but have been often referred to as twins  ;).
Not another "sister ship" debate >:(

For what it's worth, the former Seafrance ships came from different yards in different countries years apart, so it's definitely stretching it in my book to call them twins - especially as they have different hull forms as well.  Twins implies they at least came from the same place.  Very few ships are really identical to be honest - adjustments and improvements tend to be made during build to reflect the experience gained during the building process.  That makes drawing a line as to what does and does not constitute a sister ship all the more difficult. 

Anyway, can we go back to P&O fleet movements please? :)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 22, 2016, 09:41:14 PM
A round trip was missed earlier on Dover to Calais because of a technical problem
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 04, 2016, 12:40:18 AM
From NI Ferry Site

Quote
European Highlander and European Causeway to dry dock

According to P&O's latest timetable information leaflet here, European Causeway and European Highlander will dry dock from 30 Apr – 1 May and 28 – 29 May 2016. It is not yet clear whether any ship will be brought in to cover, though in previous years Norbay has made the trip North to operate the Cairnryan route in the absence of the either regular vessel.

In other P&O dry docking news, the pure car and truck carrier Neptune Aegli has arrived in Dublin. It is expected that she will enter service on P&O's Dublin to Liverpool service on Monday, releasing for European Endeavour for her dry docking.  Neptune Aegli can carry some 1.800 cars and has 1500lm of freight space.

Interesting as Neptune Aegli is designed as a car carrier that can handle trucks.  Her normal customers being vehicle manufacturers and specialist shippers of vehicles. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on April 04, 2016, 01:57:26 PM
I was told that the European Highlander and European Causeway will remain in Larne for in water survey work as opposed to going to dry dock for such a short period. Also, it says on the booking engine on P&O's website there will be no cover provided on what are likely to be two quieter bank holiday weekends.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on April 17, 2016, 10:42:45 PM
Former P&O Express, sporting its new look


https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G9B_zePQlfs
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 19, 2016, 03:31:48 PM
Lovely vessel, my personal favourite of the HSC's. Very bright, modern and airy. Not cramped, like a big Stena Lynx III. The club lounge to the stern was a nice feature, and the refit back in 2012 updated much of her interior.

I my opinion she would have made a good replacement for the HSS, but like P&O, Stena too have pulled the plug on the HSC operations. Stena Carisma is still sitting idle unfortunately, and the future for the Hoverspeed / Seacat vessels in Greece looks very uncertain.

HSC's are pretty common in that neck of the woods, so hopefully Express will earn her keep. P&O looked after her well so she will be around for a few years yet.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 20, 2016, 06:58:17 AM
Lovely vessel, my personal favourite of the HSC's. Very bright, modern and airy. Not cramped, like a big Stena Lynx III. The club lounge to the stern was a nice feature, and the refit back in 2012 updated much of her interior.

I my opinion she would have made a good replacement for the HSS, but like P&O, Stena too have pulled the plug on the HSC operations. Stena Carisma is still sitting idle unfortunately, and the future for the Hoverspeed / Seacat vessels in Greece looks very uncertain.

HSC's are pretty common in that neck of the woods, so hopefully Express will earn her keep. P&O looked after her well so she will be around for a few years yet.
You are entitled to your opinion, but the ageing express was a totally different type of craft to HSS1500.  Coupled with the fact that carryings from Dun Laoghaire where less than poor, it would have made little sense IMO for Stena to acquire her.  They have had their fill of InCats anyway.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: DublinPeter on April 20, 2016, 11:45:04 PM
Lovely vessel, my personal favourite of the HSC's. Very bright, modern and airy. Not cramped, like a big Stena Lynx III. The club lounge to the stern was a nice feature, and the refit back in 2012 updated much of her interior.

I my opinion she would have made a good replacement for the HSS, but like P&O, Stena too have pulled the plug on the HSC operations. Stena Carisma is still sitting idle unfortunately, and the future for the Hoverspeed / Seacat vessels in Greece looks very uncertain.

HSC's are pretty common in that neck of the woods, so hopefully Express will earn her keep. P&O looked after her well so she will be around for a few years yet.

You're right TC, she is a lovely vessel and from what I'm told she came closer than we think to a new life in Dun Laoghaire enjoying a Teddys 99 and plying her trade across the Irish Sea.  It's amazing the difference a nice interior fitout makes to a vessel and I agree with the comparisons to latter era Stena Lynx III which really looked very smart following on from her final refit before she went off to her new life in Asia. 

Pete
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on May 20, 2016, 08:43:07 AM
There are some nice photos on the Internet of Express sporting a new livery in Scandinavian waters and I also noted Stena Flavia in full Stena Line colours also operating from Nynashamn.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 22, 2016, 08:42:21 PM
Came across this earlier (not sure where really is the best place to post it tbh).  Surely it would have been easier just to say sorry (even if they felt they weren't in the wrong) rather than drag the P&O name through the gutter.  Of course, there are two sides to every story, but its a basic rule of customer service to at least apologise!

http://www.catalystmedia.org.uk/nerve/nerve26/a-black-man-praises-the-police-but-po-thats-a-different-story/

Quote
A Black Man Praises the Police. But P&O? That’s a Different Story

It had been a very loud and angry exchange. I was the only Black person in the place, I think, and had been at the centre of it all. And then the police arrived.

This story ends much better than many would expect, given the multiple tragic stories one hears coming from out of the USA these days, but for me, the officer from the Port of Liverpool Police did what was expected of him, and the matter was settled to my satisfaction: a very irate truck driver who had racially abused me during a confrontation eventually apologised, I accepted the apology and he drove away feeling chastened. As far as he was concerned, that was the end of it. It would have been the same for me too, had it not been for the subsequent behaviour of P&O Ferries’ staff and management.

It was December 2014, and I had just returned to Liverpool from a short tour of Ireland. Having been the last vehicle onto the ship in Dublin, I should have been first off, but due to misinformation from the duty manager, I didn’t return to my car when passengers on my deck were called, and I ended up delaying an entire line of traffic for several minutes. When I heard, “Would the driver of vehicle number….” specifically being asked to go to the deck immediately, I rushed down, apologised to the staff, and as I went to do the same to the driver immediately behind me, was met with a torrent of abuse, including a racial slur. My refusal to move without an apology resulted in him producing a large metal bar with which he threatened to break my skull. I stood my ground and asked for the police to be called. As we waited, I suggested to a member of staff that I could move my car so that those behind us could get away. He agreed, and as I started to move, I was stopped by another member of staff who, arriving on the scene for the first time said to me, “You cannot conduct yourself in that way and expect to be able to leave the vessel”, making me hold up the traffic that much longer until the policeman arrived. Almost immediately, he got me and the offending driver to move to let the others leave, then proceeded to take statements from us individually, during which I offered not to press charges as long as I received a genuine apology.

Before I left, I said to the woman who had stopped me from moving my car in the first place that I hadn’t appreciated being spoken to the way she had done, but she was adamant that she had treated both the other driver and me equally, in a way that she considered appropriate. I left it at that and went home.
It continued to rankle however, and I sent in a complaint a week later, thinking that eventually I might receive something of an apology from P&O and that the lady might be given a talking to about better customer care. What followed over the next three months however was really quite different. P&O Customer Relations first stated that on investigation, the information they received differed greatly from my version of events. Later, it transpired that their investigations indicated that it was I who had been aggressive, offensive and threatening, as borne out by the fact that the police were called and that no action had been taken against the other driver. Confident that CCTV footage would vindicate me, I asked for this to be made available, but was told that this was not permissible under Data Protection law. I persevered, defying them to produce some footage, which I assumed they had seen but were suppressing, confident that it would show my initial contriteness, my attempts to apologise, the threatened serious physical assault on me as staff looked on, but above all, my lack of aggressiveness. In my emails, I mentioned the fact that whilst my case was thankfully very different to the shocking incidents from the USA that one has seen shared on social media, Black people are now beginning to be grateful for the usefulness of mobile phone technology in exposing racism. I particularly mentioned the footage of some Chelsea fans’ racist behaviour in a Paris underground station, and the fact that its having gone viral on social media had contributed to the Chelsea management’s promise to take decisive action against the hoodlums. I also pointed out the fact that one of them had called in to a radio phone-in programme in London to say that they had been acting in self defence as the Black man had himself been aggressive, when the video clearly showed this to be untrue.

Racial profiling, I argued, had been at work here on the deck of a P&O ferry – a Black man defending himself from abuse is perceived as aggressive and dangerous. Never mind the fact that this Black man had just returned from a trip where several hundred Irish people had been introduced through him to Paul Robeson – a great African American artist who had educated the world about racial equality; that this Black man had performed at Carnegie Hall in New York and travels the world with his art; that this Black man is a published writer and is also responsible for the design and construction of a good number of buildings in the UK as an architect. I had thought it sufficient to make the offending driver grovel with an apology to the very Black man he had abused, after being made to see that the Black man could react to serious provocation in a peaceful and magnanimous manner. I had hoped to persuade him that every person, regardless of their skin colour, deserves respect – especially when they first approach you with humility.

Sadly, P&O, according to their Head of Security, concluded that no apology was due from them, that their ground staff were not guilty of racial profiling, and that as there was in fact no CCTV surveillance in that part of the vessel, I could (and I paraphrase here) go away and do my worst. Having determined, with the very generous help of the Duty Sergeant at Port of Liverpool Police, that the unbelievable is indeed probably true (no CCTV), it seems that the “worst” I can do is tell this story to those who would care to read it.

I consider it a story worth telling not just to laud straightforward decent policing where such praise is due, but also because to remain silent is to be complicit in behaviour which, if unchecked, can so easily have tragic consequences. The recent UK cases of Deen Taiwo and Sheku Bayoh remind me to be thankful that I lived to tell this tale, but also that it is my duty to speak out against racism with every breath I have in me, and to do what I can to educate others – be they on the bottom decks or at the top echelons of well known ferry companies.

Tayo Aluko tours internationally with his award winning play Call Mr. Robeson – by air, car and sea.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 25, 2016, 01:42:53 PM
Came across this earlier (not sure where really is the best place to post it tbh).  Surely it would have been easier just to say sorry (even if they felt they weren't in the wrong) rather than drag the P&O name through the gutter.  Of course, there are two sides to every story, but its a basic rule of customer service to at least apologise!

http://www.catalystmedia.org.uk/nerve/nerve26/a-black-man-praises-the-police-but-po-thats-a-different-story/

Quote
A Black Man Praises the Police. But P&O? That’s a Different Story

It had been a very loud and angry exchange. I was the only Black person in the place, I think, and had been at the centre of it all. And then the police arrived.

This story ends much better than many would expect, given the multiple tragic stories one hears coming from out of the USA these days, but for me, the officer from the Port of Liverpool Police did what was expected of him, and the matter was settled to my satisfaction: a very irate truck driver who had racially abused me during a confrontation eventually apologised, I accepted the apology and he drove away feeling chastened. As far as he was concerned, that was the end of it. It would have been the same for me too, had it not been for the subsequent behaviour of P&O Ferries’ staff and management.

It was December 2014, and I had just returned to Liverpool from a short tour of Ireland. Having been the last vehicle onto the ship in Dublin, I should have been first off, but due to misinformation from the duty manager, I didn’t return to my car when passengers on my deck were called, and I ended up delaying an entire line of traffic for several minutes. When I heard, “Would the driver of vehicle number….” specifically being asked to go to the deck immediately, I rushed down, apologised to the staff, and as I went to do the same to the driver immediately behind me, was met with a torrent of abuse, including a racial slur. My refusal to move without an apology resulted in him producing a large metal bar with which he threatened to break my skull. I stood my ground and asked for the police to be called. As we waited, I suggested to a member of staff that I could move my car so that those behind us could get away. He agreed, and as I started to move, I was stopped by another member of staff who, arriving on the scene for the first time said to me, “You cannot conduct yourself in that way and expect to be able to leave the vessel”, making me hold up the traffic that much longer until the policeman arrived. Almost immediately, he got me and the offending driver to move to let the others leave, then proceeded to take statements from us individually, during which I offered not to press charges as long as I received a genuine apology.

Before I left, I said to the woman who had stopped me from moving my car in the first place that I hadn’t appreciated being spoken to the way she had done, but she was adamant that she had treated both the other driver and me equally, in a way that she considered appropriate. I left it at that and went home.
It continued to rankle however, and I sent in a complaint a week later, thinking that eventually I might receive something of an apology from P&O and that the lady might be given a talking to about better customer care. What followed over the next three months however was really quite different. P&O Customer Relations first stated that on investigation, the information they received differed greatly from my version of events. Later, it transpired that their investigations indicated that it was I who had been aggressive, offensive and threatening, as borne out by the fact that the police were called and that no action had been taken against the other driver. Confident that CCTV footage would vindicate me, I asked for this to be made available, but was told that this was not permissible under Data Protection law. I persevered, defying them to produce some footage, which I assumed they had seen but were suppressing, confident that it would show my initial contriteness, my attempts to apologise, the threatened serious physical assault on me as staff looked on, but above all, my lack of aggressiveness. In my emails, I mentioned the fact that whilst my case was thankfully very different to the shocking incidents from the USA that one has seen shared on social media, Black people are now beginning to be grateful for the usefulness of mobile phone technology in exposing racism. I particularly mentioned the footage of some Chelsea fans’ racist behaviour in a Paris underground station, and the fact that its having gone viral on social media had contributed to the Chelsea management’s promise to take decisive action against the hoodlums. I also pointed out the fact that one of them had called in to a radio phone-in programme in London to say that they had been acting in self defence as the Black man had himself been aggressive, when the video clearly showed this to be untrue.

Racial profiling, I argued, had been at work here on the deck of a P&O ferry – a Black man defending himself from abuse is perceived as aggressive and dangerous. Never mind the fact that this Black man had just returned from a trip where several hundred Irish people had been introduced through him to Paul Robeson – a great African American artist who had educated the world about racial equality; that this Black man had performed at Carnegie Hall in New York and travels the world with his art; that this Black man is a published writer and is also responsible for the design and construction of a good number of buildings in the UK as an architect. I had thought it sufficient to make the offending driver grovel with an apology to the very Black man he had abused, after being made to see that the Black man could react to serious provocation in a peaceful and magnanimous manner. I had hoped to persuade him that every person, regardless of their skin colour, deserves respect – especially when they first approach you with humility.

Sadly, P&O, according to their Head of Security, concluded that no apology was due from them, that their ground staff were not guilty of racial profiling, and that as there was in fact no CCTV surveillance in that part of the vessel, I could (and I paraphrase here) go away and do my worst. Having determined, with the very generous help of the Duty Sergeant at Port of Liverpool Police, that the unbelievable is indeed probably true (no CCTV), it seems that the “worst” I can do is tell this story to those who would care to read it.

I consider it a story worth telling not just to laud straightforward decent policing where such praise is due, but also because to remain silent is to be complicit in behaviour which, if unchecked, can so easily have tragic consequences. The recent UK cases of Deen Taiwo and Sheku Bayoh remind me to be thankful that I lived to tell this tale, but also that it is my duty to speak out against racism with every breath I have in me, and to do what I can to educate others – be they on the bottom decks or at the top echelons of well known ferry companies.

Tayo Aluko tours internationally with his award winning play Call Mr. Robeson – by air, car and sea.

Very strange incident. Certainly with all my years using P&O, I have never come across such an incident. Its a shame the vessel this occurred on is not documented, however considering 80% of the crew on P&O Irish Sea are from culturally and ethnically diverse regions of the world, you can hardly call P&O a racist company. On the Liverpool - Dublin route East European, Filipino, British, Dutch, and Irish are the main nationalities.

Announcements are made on both Norbank and Norbay as the vessel is approaching either port, and as the vessel is berthing for car drivers to return to their vehicles. 90% of the cars apart from those with animals, or in some cases vans / motorhomes, are placed on the upper vehicle deck. How confusion can occur is relatively slim.

On European Endeavour, a pre recorded announcement is played requesting all car drivers to return to their vehicles at the appropriate time - again avoiding any confusion. This is pretty much the same model as used on the Hull and Dover ships, and no problems arise.

No company can be responsible for other passengers behaviour, have that be racist etc. To be fair if the guy just said to the crew member who refused to let him move his car "This individual is being racist and making threats of violence to me" then the response of the crew member would have been different.

To be fair to the crew member, he just arrived on the scene and likely had not spoken to any of his colleagues. He may have thought he was just dealing with two anti-social individuals, hence why the port police were called.  Additionally that individual would be under pressure to unload and reload the vessel in a short space of time - not an easy task. This could have easily occurred with Stena Line, Irish Ferries, DFDS, Brittany Ferries or any other company.

P&O are an excellent company, that employe thousands of staff of many different nationalities. P&O move thousands of people every day, of again, numerous ethnic, cultural, or religious backgrounds, without any incidents. I imagine many people who work for P&O are not happy at the insinuation the company is by anyway racist or bigoted.

The customer services and security can only work with the information / statements they receive.


Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on May 26, 2016, 07:21:05 AM
Surely the first rule of customer service is to defuse a situation? In that case why not just issue an apology even if they felt they weren't in the wrong?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 26, 2016, 11:07:22 AM
P&O would be accepting responsibility for the actions of an individual passenger if they 'apologised'. I think a goodwill gesture would be more appropriate. A free mini cruise.

Let me give two hypothetical example - Stena Adventurer is entering Holyhead harbour. Pre recorded announcements are played indicating to car drivers to re-join their vehicles. One passenger does not follow the instructions, and remains in the lounges. On returning to the vehicle he gets abuse from a passenger. A crew member intervenes and the port police is called...

Who is at fault? - Stena or the abusive passenger... I would say the abusive passenger.


     
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 26, 2016, 09:30:31 PM
P&O would be accepting responsibility for the actions of an individual passenger if they 'apologised'. I think a goodwill gesture would be more appropriate. A free mini cruise.

Let me give two hypothetical example - Stena Adventurer is entering Holyhead harbour. Pre recorded announcements are played indicating to car drivers to re-join their vehicles. One passenger does not follow the instructions, and remains in the lounges. On returning to the vehicle he gets abuse from a passenger. A crew member intervenes and the port police is called...

Who is at fault? - Stena or the abusive passenger... I would say the abusive passenger.
The point was he was singled out by a member of the crew as being responsible for the incident which caused the police to be caused - specifically the other party threatening him with a metal bar and using a racial slur.  It was this member of staff which also appears to have caused the further delay.  Whether this was because of race or if there is more to this than is being said we don't know, but certainly it would appear that this member of staff took exception to this man and over-ruled the other member of staff for whatever reason.  At best the way in which the gentleman was spoken too was very poor customer service.

They wouldn't be accepting any responsibility for simply apologising for any upset caused.  Standard customer service procedure.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 26, 2016, 11:14:27 PM
I have never had issues with customer services, about on the same level as Stena or Irish Ferries. The guys insinuation is one that P&O can't take likely. Being called racist when you employ thousands of staff of various nationalities doesn't really go together.

I think a goodwill gesture would be appropriate.

In other news - Its great to see P&O are investing in its people - particularly Customer Service!
http://www.belfastlive.co.uk/business/15-po-ferries-staff-members-11379064
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 26, 2016, 11:16:16 PM
"P&O Ferries is a people based services company and we understand the importance of training, motivating and empowering staff members and retaining the best talent.   

“We are committed to providing our customers with the highest standards of service and that means we need skilled, confident and knowledgeable staff, and we believe in providing them with the best opportunities to enhance and grow their skills.”

Neal Mernock, Sector Director Irish Sea, P&O Ferries

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 26, 2016, 11:51:04 PM
I have never had issues with customer services, about on the same level as Stena or Irish Ferries. The guys insinuation is one that P&O can't take likely. Being called racist when you employ thousands of staff of various nationalities doesn't really go together.

I think a goodwill gesture would be appropriate.

In other news - Its great to see P&O are investing in its people - particularly Customer Service!
http://www.belfastlive.co.uk/business/15-po-ferries-staff-members-11379064
From memory, customer service is 1 module out of 7 needed the core qualification.  That is assuming that the qualification is based on the Level 2 Certificate in Team Leading - CMI don't actually appear to offer a Level 2 Certificate in Team Leading and Customer Service! 

For the record I've know of plenty of racists who employ (or work with) foreign born staff.  Not saying P&O are racist (and again, there are 2 sides to every story), but simply apologising for any upset caused could have avoided what has the potential to become a bit of a mess for P&O.  Saying sorry (but not admitting liability) is rule number 1 in customer service after all !!!!  Pointing the finger at the customer is only ever going to have the effect of inflaming a situation.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on May 27, 2016, 07:03:28 AM
If I was them, I would have issued a private apology and a good will gesture to defuse the situation and avoid bad publicity at all costs.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 27, 2016, 09:39:26 AM
I think this case dates back to 2014, and P&O is still going strong, so its not a huge PR disaster. In fact I never heard of the case prior to Steven posting. I don't think we should get hung up on negative news in any case. I recently heard a very bad experience on Stena Lagan, but once again it was because of a fellow passenger - not Stena! It certainly wont taint my view of Stena Line or its staff, even though it appears the guy was threatened, not much has been done, as of yet. 

The sad reality is when you move thousands of passengers on a daily basis there can occasionally be hiccups. Your right Steven good customer service is important, generally P&O have good customer service, as reflected on Direct Ferries and TripAdvisor feedback.

I definitely think P&O could have handled this better. I have a feeling though the crew member was quiet stressed - its not easy turning a ship around. I think they should have issued some sort of goodwill gesture, have that be a mini cruise or a meeting at Channel House.

I think it is good P&O are investing in its people, regardless if its Team Leading or whatever. At least it demonstrates they are committed to improving.





 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 27, 2016, 04:09:22 PM
I have never had issues with customer services, about on the same level as Stena or Irish Ferries. The guys insinuation is one that P&O can't take likely. Being called racist when you employ thousands of staff of various nationalities doesn't really go together.

I think a goodwill gesture would be appropriate.


Let's be clear - the article is basically this guy saying that the P&O crew member blamed him for the incident and he (quite rightly) wants an apology.  In other words assuming he was due to blame due to the colour of his skin.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 27, 2016, 04:11:46 PM
"P&O Ferries is a people based services company and we understand the importance of training, motivating and empowering staff members and retaining the best talent.   

“We are committed to providing our customers with the highest standards of service and that means we need skilled, confident and knowledgeable staff, and we believe in providing them with the best opportunities to enhance and grow their skills.”

Neal Mernock, Sector Director Irish Sea, P&O Ferries

Most of these courses are a lot of claptrap - company culture is much more important and P&O's sucks.  Look at their social media pages to see how they ignore customer comments and feedback.  My experience is that their customer service onboard is far below Stena and very far below Irish Ferries.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 27, 2016, 09:25:13 PM
Your welcome to your opinion Paddy. I personally have a more favourable view of P&O.

Considering many employees of P&O read the forum they are likely insulted by a blasé statement like 'P&O sucks'.

Generally I don't think we should be using the P&O thread for negative publicity. Its unfair in my opinion. I could rant on about the very below standard experiences I have had with both Irish Ferries and Stena Line. I don't though as I personally like to focus on the more positive aspects of a company, rather than slagging them off at every opportunity, or just focusing on the negative aspects.

Don't get me wrong I am not trying to say P&O are perfect. But a lot of people who work for Stena previously worked for P&O, and a lot of people who work for P&O, previously worked for Stena! People are human, just because some have an 'S' on their lapel rather than a house flag, doesn't mean they are sub-par individuals.



Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 28, 2016, 03:33:32 PM
Your welcome to your opinion Paddy. I personally have a more favourable view of P&O.

Considering many employees of P&O read the forum they are likely insulted by a blasé statement like 'P&O sucks'.

Generally I don't think we should be using the P&O thread for negative publicity. Its unfair in my opinion. I could rant on about the very below standard experiences I have had with both Irish Ferries and Stena Line. I don't though as I personally like to focus on the more positive aspects of a company, rather than slagging them off at every opportunity, or just focusing on the negative aspects.

Don't get me wrong I am not trying to say P&O are perfect. But a lot of people who work for Stena previously worked for P&O, and a lot of people who work for P&O, previously worked for Stena! People are human, just because some have an 'S' on their lapel rather than a house flag, doesn't mean they are sub-par individuals.

You have returned to your usual habit of misquoting.

I said that P&O's company culture sucks not their staff - most of their staff that I know have told me that this is their view.  Nonsense courses, top heavy management, a blame culture, slow decision-making etc.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: marthyrarth on May 28, 2016, 05:25:26 PM
I agree - we are not criticising individuals here, and if we think a company is good or bad we should be able to discuss that freely.

Personally, I have been quite impressed by my experience of Stena crews on the iRISH Sea recently, but obviously crews are more stressed on busy sailings and after a long season.

My P and O experience has been Dover-Calais most recently, and I did get the impression that p and o are not the best employer.  High end shore staff are I believe rather out of touch with the hard working ships crew.  Would be good for them to work a week a year on one of their ferries to understand how hard it is and appreciate the crew more.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 28, 2016, 07:07:34 PM
As a company I view P&O, Stena and Irish Ferries, in a similar light. To be honest its like comparing Texaco, Shell and Esso. They all vary, but at the end of the day the products are incredibly similar.

If you have a pessimistic or a positive view of the company that is ok. But just focusing on the negatives is not the way the fleet movements should go. All that happens is it will become a repository for bad press, which Irish Ferries and Stena have had their fair share of, just like P&O.

Helen Deeble P&O's CEO previously worked for Stena Line, so once again we have crossover, this time at a senior level. P&O have taken good and bad decisions, but overall I have a favourable view of the company. I believe they do work hard to develop a sustainable operating model. We have to recognise though P&O post 2004 is a much smaller company with far less resources, hence they don't have the luxury of propping up the ferries division with oodles of cash from elsewhere.

If Stena had to rely on the ferries alone, we would likely see several more routes closed (ie Fishguard) simply because it would not be viable to replace the vessel.

I don't intend to get into an online argument, but I'll just mention it again, I don't think it is right to focus purely on the negative aspects of the company. All it appears to be is negatives.... after negatives.



Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 29, 2016, 07:08:49 PM


I don't intend to get into an online argument, but I'll just mention it again, I don't think it is right to focus purely on the negative aspects of the company. All it appears to be is negatives.... after negatives.

I'm sorry if I appear negative but I remember the glory days of P&O at Larne with 9 or 10 vessels and routes to Cairnryan, Fleetwood, Liverpool and Ardrossan.

They promised improvements to the Causeway and Highlander which haven't happened, the port is very quiet compared to what it used to be.

I just wish I could find reasons to be positive.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 29, 2016, 11:23:54 PM
Well Paddy I have some interesting news.

Profits are up significantly at P&O for 2015, and according to Helen Deeble things are looking up. £32 million net with a turnover of £960 million. Not too shabby, its up on 2014, £13 million.

She indicates P&O are planning to have new vessels ordered this year, hopefully coming on stream for 2020 / 2021, but they may bring this forward.

“The journey we’ve been on, as with many shipping companies, is through a very severe recession,” says Deeble. “I would describe ’15 and ’16 together as our years of recovery.

“Last year was 'year one’ and we saw a big step up in profitability and that’s important directionally but it’s not yet at the level we need to be at to invest. 2016 is about getting to that level and 2017 and beyond will be what I call the investment and growth phase.”

“We were previously thinking about new-build orders coming on stream in 2020-21,” she says. “Now what we’re going to do is see if we can bring them forward by a year or two, which means we have got to start really at the end of this year with a new build project.”

“People see us as a tourism brand really, but 60pc of our business is freight,” Deeble notes. “We had a lot of revenue at lower margin in the second half of last year, and what we’re looking to grow is better yielding revenue.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/05/29/po-boss-gets-ferry-business-ship-shape-for-growth/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on May 30, 2016, 07:17:35 AM
I hope you don't mind me asking this, TC, but do you work for P&O? The reason I ask is that you are like the forum version of their PR department?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 31, 2016, 02:11:06 PM
Well Paddy I have some interesting news.

Profits are up significantly at P&O for 2015, and according to Helen Deeble things are looking up. £32 million net with a turnover of £960 million. Not too shabby, its up on 2014, £13 million.

She indicates P&O are planning to have new vessels ordered this year, hopefully coming on stream for 2020 / 2021, but they may bring this forward.

“The journey we’ve been on, as with many shipping companies, is through a very severe recession,” says Deeble. “I would describe ’15 and ’16 together as our years of recovery.

“Last year was 'year one’ and we saw a big step up in profitability and that’s important directionally but it’s not yet at the level we need to be at to invest. 2016 is about getting to that level and 2017 and beyond will be what I call the investment and growth phase.”

“We were previously thinking about new-build orders coming on stream in 2020-21,” she says. “Now what we’re going to do is see if we can bring them forward by a year or two, which means we have got to start really at the end of this year with a new build project.”

“People see us as a tourism brand really, but 60pc of our business is freight,” Deeble notes. “We had a lot of revenue at lower margin in the second half of last year, and what we’re looking to grow is better yielding revenue.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/05/29/po-boss-gets-ferry-business-ship-shape-for-growth/

Any news on how they are going to grow and develop their Irish Sea business?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 01, 2016, 12:47:55 PM
I think consolidating, and focusing on the growth routes is the best way forward.

Unfortunately Stena has the Northern Ireland market pretty much stitched up. Heysham - Belfast, and Birkenhead - Belfast, all provide adequate capacity. If P&O were to introduce a Liverpool to Larne service, with Norbank & Norbay taking up the service, with larger new vessels replacing the latter at Dublin, Stena could counter it by dumping their prices, ultimately leading to the service not carrying sufficient loads, leading to its closure.

The Larne to Cairnryan run as it currently stands will just stumble along, making losses, until the time comes to replace the European Highlander and European Causeway. Channel House will just do what they did on Portsmouth to Bilbao - close the route citing losses and falling passenger numbers which prevents them from ordering new vessels.

If P&O are able to make a Liverpool to Larne operation work, which I am sceptical about, then they might be able to generate more interest in Larne.

If they moved to Belfast, they would likely preform better as they have lower running costs than Stena, thus bringing lower prices to customers. This likely would lead to them to winning back customers that defected to Stena's Belfast to Cairnryan service.

The above plan does require investment, and naturally a facility would need to be developed. The IOMSPC facilities in Belfast wouldn't be a bad starting point, but berthing would be problematic.

Liverpool to Dublin looks much more promising. The demand for larger vessels is there, so the investment would be justified, unlike at Larne. The current service does very well, totally contrasting the Larne operations.

I couldn't see Irish Ferries taking on Larne to Cairnryan, simply because they will face all the problems P&O have post 2011. Belfast would be a better option, and P&O have invested in the new link-span at Cairnryan which can accommodate larger more modern ships. But why would P&O not just start there own Belfast to Cairnryan run, rather than leaving an excellent facility at Cairnryan to another operator - appears foolish. P&O own the Port of Cairnryan, so they would get berthing fees ect from this hypothetical operator, but that is again not the same as running a successful operation of there own out of the facility.

Overall we wont see new P&O ships on the Irish Sea for quite a while as the current fleet is not that old. I am told Norbank & Norbay are mechanically A1, despite being 22, while European Endeavour, European Causeway, and European Highlander were only built in the 2000s, so not exactly ancient.

Stena Europe is 36 years old, so P&O should get a good few more years out of their ships. Keeping the profits growing is P&O's biggest challenge.

The news of new vessels for Dover is a good sign. Once Dover is sorted, and four or five years of steady profits, we will likely see a string of new ships ordered for Zeebrugge and Dublin.
 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 02, 2016, 01:22:27 AM
I hope you don't mind me asking this, TC, but do you work for P&O? The reason I ask is that you are like the forum version of their PR department?
I'd say he's too good at promoting them to work for P&O PR  ::).  Speaking of which, I asked a question on the official P&O Facebook page on Thursday asking when the previously announced work to Causeway and Highlander would start and where the planned additional seats would be fitted.  I have yet to get any reply from them, however several other questions posted since have been answered on the same day.  Dodging the question?  After all, these improvements have now been announced twice and we were originally told would be completed in time for Easter!

My favourite feature of the P&O website, the big bold lettering "Route now closed", is still in situ as well over Larne - Troon.  If we consider that the website should be laid out in a left to right layout in order of importance (as thats the way we read in the west), it seems promoting Larne to Troon is closed is more important to P&O than promoting the Liverpool to Dublin route!

Regarding P&O's profits, having read P&O's annual reports over the years I always take the officially announced numbers with a large pinch of salt (well, a handful if I'm honest).They aren't exactly unknown for a spot of creative accounting - ask HMRC  ;).  Mind you, others aren't much better!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 02, 2016, 10:58:55 AM
I agree Steven. P&O didn't do a good job closing Troon - In fact even I found it poorly thought through. They would have been better sticking with the 'not viable' and 'lack of suitable' replacement tonnage lines, rather than insisting they were not closing the route.

The refit is another issue. Releasing press statements stating the vessels are getting improvements, and not following through is a problem.

Liverpool needs to be beefed up. They need larger vessels - I know this wont happen for a good few years, but regardless if Norbank and Norbay are mechanically A1, they need to be moved on. They are simply too small to cope with the traffic demands.

It will be very interesting to see where P&O build there next generation of vessels for Dover. I have a sneaking suspicion an Asian yard might get the contract.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 03, 2016, 09:24:11 AM
Quote
P&O boss gets ferry business ship-shape for growth

P&O Ferries is led by veteran chief executive Helen Deeble

 Ben Martin
29 MAY 2016 • 4:30PM
The boss of P&O Ferries almost winces as she recalls the chaos that descended on Calais last summer when strikes and the migrant crisis brought the town to a standstill.

For three days the port of Calais was closed, wreaking havoc on cross-channel trade. Calais, according to some observers, resembled a warzone, with black smoke filling the air as striking ferry-workers protesting against job cuts burned tyres and blockaded the port.

The situation was exacerbated by the thousands of migrants camped in Calais attempting to board queuing lorries bound for the UK.

Travellers blast Eurostar after migrants force trains to turn backPlay! 02:52
“To allow such a major part of the transport infrastructure to just stop was almost criminal, really,” says Helen Deeble, the 54-year old chief executive of P&O Ferries. “Nobody working here can ever remember that length of disruption.”

The port eventually reopened and sailings to Calais resumed. Furthermore, somewhat counter-intuitively P&O Ferries ultimately became  a beneficiary of the summer of travel chaos that mainly hit its rival Eurotunnel, which continued to suffer disruption from migrants. Holiday-makers and lorry drivers seeking to avoid the troubled Eurotunnel turned to ferries to cross the Channel instead.

It was a boon for P&O Ferries, which traces its origins back to the Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company, the ports, shipping and logistics business founded in 1837. FTSE 100 company P&O was bought by Dubai Ports World for £3.9bn a decade ago and Deeble has been in charge of the ferries business ever since.

Traffic figures show that despite Calais’s brief closure, P&O Ferries enjoyed a strong 2015, carrying a record 1.34m freight units across the Channel, a 22pc jump on 2014.

It was helped by British competition authorities, which forced Eurotunnel to offload its Myferrylink ships, which competed with P&O, to Danish operator DFDS. Worries that this would result in job losses at Myferrylink caused the Calais strikes. It also meant the Myferrylink vessels were taken out service to be overhauled, a fillip for P&O during the second half of 2015.

With Eurotunnel hit by disruption and no Myferrylink competition, P&O brought a freight-only vessel back into service in July, adding a sixth ship to its Dover-Calais route, to cope with demand. It helped P&O absorb the thousands of lorries queuing on the M20 waiting to cross the Channel when the Government implemented Operation Stack to deal with the impact of Eurotunnel delays caused by the migrant crisis.


Deeble hopes the ferry business, which was hit by the economic downturn following 2008, is now well-placed for further growth. In 2014, revenues slipped 2.5pc to £942.5m, but the company swung to a £13m pre-tax profit from a £10.2m loss a year earlier. As well as Calais-Dover, it operates between Hull and Rotterdam and Zeebrugge and routes across the Irish Sea. It also runs transport and logistics business Ferrymasters.

“The journey we’ve been on, as with many shipping companies, is through a very severe recession,” says Deeble. “I would describe ’15 and ’16 together as our years of recovery.

“Last year was 'year one’ and we saw a big step up in profitability and that’s important directionally but it’s not yet at the level we need to be at to invest. 2016 is about getting to that level and 2017 and beyond will be what I call the investment and growth phase.”

P&O is yet to file 2015 results, but Deeble says it generated £960m in turnover and net profits of £32m. She believes it will be on a sound enough footing to start the process of ordering two new vessels later this year.

“We were previously thinking about new-build orders coming on stream in 2020-21,” she says. “Now what we’re going to do is see if we can bring them forward by a year or two, which means we have got to start really at the end of this year with a new build project.”

The last time P&O bought two new two ferries – its enormous Spirit-class vessels used in the Channel – they cost €150m each and were ordered in 2008, just before the financial crash. P&O’s freight business will be key to getting its finances ship-shape for further fleet investment.

“People see us as a tourism brand really, but 60pc of our business is freight,” Deeble notes. “We had a lot of revenue at lower margin in the second half of last year, and what we’re looking to grow is better yielding revenue.”

Improving yield means focusing on freight that can be loaded most efficiently. Deeble also hopes to make progress on the tourism side of the business too.

“What we’re doing in the tourist market isn’t a volume play its more about what other revenue streams can we develop,” she says. These include increasing the range of themed evenings – from Abba revival nights to darts – offered on overnight routes such as Hull to Rotterdam. It also means taking further steps to revamp food on ships to reflect the high street trend towards casual dining, and installing better gaming and gambling facilities.

“We’ve got a big refresh programme being designed and we’re going to look at how we roll that out properly in 2017,” the P&O boss says.

Born in Solihull and raised in Leamington Spa, Deeble trained as an accountant after A-Levels.

“Then as soon as I could I went into industry,” she says. That meant joining retail giant Sears, first in its menswear division and then childrenswear. In 1993 Deeble was approached by Swedish business Stena Line, which was looking for a financial controller without a shipping background who could bring a fresh perspective. For Deeble, moving her family to Kent to work at Stena was a big risk.

“My eldest son was five so he’d done one year at school, my youngest one was 10 months old,” she recalls. “You sit back now and go: 'I must have been absolutely barking mad’, but I met some really inspiring people at Stena Line.”

She became finance director in 1996, and took the same role at P&O Stena Line after the merger of the companies two years later. When P&O cut 1,200 jobs and slashed routes in 2004 after it was hit by competition from Eurotunnel, low-cost airlines and declining freight rates, Deeble was chief operating officer of the ferries division, at the heart of the painful restructuring.

She was promoted to chief executive of the ferry operations after Dubai bought P&O in 2006. Ever since, there has been speculation Dubai, which wanted P&O for its ports, would sell the ferries, but it never happened. Ten years later, is Dubai now eyeing a disposal?

“That’s the question that staff ask almost every year, although they’ve gone quiet in the last couple of years,” Deeble admits. Dubai “are very happy with our results, they’re happy with our recovery story,” although she adds pragmatically: “Any owner will sell at the right price at the right time if there’s suitable offer.”

Is she concerned Britain will leave the EU?

“I think as long as the underlying movement of goods and people doesn’t change then we will be fine,” she says. There is speculation Brexit could result in a return of duty free shopping, which was abolished in 1999, dealing a blow to the ferry industry.

“We’ve heard that rumour, I don’t think that’s a serious proposal, but who knows,” Deeble says.

We meet before the strikes at French oil refineries that sparked fuel shortages across the country last week. A P&O spokesman said the company was busy over the Bank Holiday and continued to operate a full schedule of Channel sailings, allowing drivers to bring extra fuel on crossings.

There are worries about a fresh build-up of migrants in Calais this summer, but Deeble is hopeful the port and cross-Channel trade will not face a repeat of last year’s crisis because of measures taken by British and French authorities.

“Touch wood, of course,” she says. “I don’t expect to see five days of freight parked on the roads, closures for days and days on end, and running battles with tyres burning on streets.”
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/05/29/po-boss-gets-ferry-business-ship-shape-for-growth/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on July 14, 2016, 12:36:15 PM
For some reason it seems P&O aren't doing any day trips on their Larne to Cairnryan route this summer. There are none on their website. This is a real pity - I recall bus loads of day trippers every day during the summer in years gone by.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on July 14, 2016, 02:52:44 PM
For some reason it seems P&O aren't doing any day trips on their Larne to Cairnryan route this summer. There are none on their website. This is a real pity - I recall bus loads of day trippers every day during the summer in years gone by.

This is very disappointing and seems a lost opportunity,
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 21, 2016, 10:18:53 PM
I've been waiting on a response to P&O for a while regarding day trips from Larne.  It is still possible to view some of last years trips on the website though!  They really should get that website under control! 

I must also say I have had a very disappointing experience trying to extract information from P&O.  The Facebook team gave me the run around for a couple of weeks after I asked when the improvements to the Cairnryan route would be happening.  The eventual response was to ring customer services as they were too busy to deal with my query!  As above I emailed about day trips from Larne, specifically with the view to promoting any offers on NIFS.  That was on the 12th of June.  Despite the email having seemingly been passed around half of P&O, I'm still awaiting a response despite further prompting!  For the good of the ferry industry I hope my experiences don't reflect those of the majority of those asking questions of P&O.  Alas, some of the messages I have received at NIFS reflect similar experiences.

On a more positive note, the Troon route has finally been removed from the website front page - hurrah!  It also seems that the much publicised improvements have started to happen with a refurbishment of the food courts also scheduled to happen next year as well.  Unfortunately, from speaking to people familiar with the ships it appears that much of the additional seating has been added to the outside decks.  At least that answers the question many of us were asking as to where on earth they would fit an additional 50 odd seats in!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: marthyrarth on July 22, 2016, 12:39:28 AM
Not good..... get ship shape P and O!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: sealink on July 22, 2016, 08:47:18 PM
I contacted P&O some time ago about day trips. they did reply promptly saying that they were unaware of any planned trips going on sale. Their final suggestion was to sign up to email to be the first to hear of any " offers ". With the closure of the Troon route i would have been very surprised to see any day trips going on sale. I would however like to see a competitively priced Foot passenger fare especially a day return. I like visiting Portpatrick and have no choice to travel Stena as P&O is too expensive at around £56 compared to £20 Stena.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on July 22, 2016, 09:20:34 PM
Their not doing bad to be fair. I am a little surprised at the customer service. At this time of the year they would be quite busy, but still I agree they should get back to you Steven.

Stena do the daytrips, so that probably explains why they have been dropped. Additionally I'd imagine Ulsterbus find using Stena better than P&O from a logistical perspective, less time the coaches are on the road = less fuel burnt.

The North Channel isn't a high priority area. I think the European Highlander and Causeway are in good condition for 16 years. Good reliability record. P&O keep them clean and tidy. Interior is well presented and the outside decks are always well painted and no corrosion. A lot better than Pride of Burgundy.

The crew seem to be struggling to keep up with the maintenance on the decks, and the corrosion on the funnel looks like its reappearing. Poor old Burgundy probably has only a few years left, so that might explain why they aren't investing as much in her, as lets say Pride of Rotterdam. I am told however her interior is still quite smart.

P&O have posted a note on poferries.com explaining the upgrades -

"Good News - we’ve just completed a number of improvements on board, with a new forward lounge on the European Highlander, new Shops and Kids areas on both ships, and over 50 more seats being available for passengers to use, including the opening of the top deck for use on sunny summer days - and with additional seating in the Reception areas to be completed this autumn, and brand new Food Courts to be created before next summer, we trust that the experience of travelling with P&O will continue to be the best we can provide."

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on July 23, 2016, 04:41:39 PM
I contacted P&O some time ago about day trips. they did reply promptly saying that they were unaware of any planned trips going on sale. Their final suggestion was to sign up to email to be the first to hear of any " offers ". With the closure of the Troon route i would have been very surprised to see any day trips going on sale. I would however like to see a competitively priced Foot passenger fare especially a day return. I like visiting Portpatrick and have no choice to travel Stena as P&O is too expensive at around £56 compared to £20 Stena.

Long before the Troon route began, P&O were offering daytrips via Cairnryan so I'm not sure why they are making no attempt at all in this regard.

Just another sign of their lack of interest in Larne.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Niall on July 23, 2016, 04:47:05 PM
I'd say Larne is on borrowed time as a ferryport. It will become like Stranraer, Dun Laoghaire and Ramsgate.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on July 23, 2016, 10:38:07 PM
European Highlander and European Causeway have 15 years of life. Its highly unlikely they will be replaced, so I guess there is your answer. If P&O move to Belfast, there might be more of an incentive to invest. They could compete head on with Stena, and likely win back business they lost post Superfast VII / VIII.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 24, 2016, 02:35:15 PM
P&O's lack of day trips from Larne is nothing to do with Troon tbh.  They offered day trips (such as the Stranraer show) via Cairnryan last year for example.  The only day trip via Cairnryan I am aware of them offering this year was for golf at Troon, which is a bit ironic!

It's a shame they don't put more effort into the Irish Sea services.  Both have potential IMHO. Of course passenger capacity is a constraint at Larne, but I doubt every sailing is full.  Some day trips (or targeted motorist returns) could improve load factors on less busy sailings in particular.  It's no accident for example that Stena heavily discount their day trips to Scotland on Tuesday's and Wednesdays.  Larne of course still has the railway connection to the terminal as well (albeit with reduced frequency), it's a shame P&O don't seem to have any interest in taking advantage of this.

Regarding Burgundy, I hear very little positive about her these days.  To be honest I'm surprised they haven't already taken steps to replace her given her near 25 years of continual service.  Am I right in saying Burgundy never underwent the modernisation of her systems to 'digital' that PoK and PoC did, and like Seaway still has her original 'analogue' systems?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on July 26, 2016, 09:55:55 PM
Yes your right Steven. As far as I am aware Burgundy remains pretty much as built. The repaint and refit she received back in 2003, when she was given POferries.com, was fairly basic.

Lloyd Werft did far more work with Kent and Canterbury - mechanically and cosmetically. You'd hardly twig your on a 20+ ex freighter, and the large floor to ceiling windows and spacious layout and deck space, still rival newer vessels. In my opinion the club lounge is better on Kent and Canterbury than on the Spirits.

I am off the opinion P&O paid way too much for the Spirits. Its true Aker Yards have produced some excellent and very reliable vessels (Ulysses, Oscar Wilde, Normandie, Barfleur etc.)  but regards the interior quality, it isn't that much different to their DFDS counterparts built by Samsung in South Korea. Feels a bit on the cheap in places. Lots of hard surfaces that really stand out. Its true for Dover to Calais they need to be tough and durable, but for 180 million each I do wonder if it money well spent?

P&O are looking at ordering new ships, a lot I imagine is happening behind closed doors at Channel House. Helen Deeble has indicated the project is going ahead and they are in working out the details with other parties. Not sure what direction P&O are going in South Korea - DSME? China - Guangzhou International Shipyard eg Gotland? Italy - Fincantieri?


Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on November 18, 2016, 04:24:59 PM
European Endeavour has been using Birkenhead 12 quays for the past few days, I believe due to problems with the lock gates at Liverpool.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 19, 2017, 06:31:34 PM
In some positive news for P&O, the company have reported they had a 7.5% increase in freight volumes in 2016 between Cairnryan and Larne, taking them to a total of 206,700 freight units for the 12 months.  This is the highest level since 2011, meaning levels have recovered to pre-Superfast levels.  They have also reported that 2016 was the first year ever they have ever had zero cancelations from the Port of Larne, with some 97% of the 4774 departures within 10 minutes of their published time.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 19, 2017, 08:16:05 PM
P&O have a good reliability record, I have never experienced a cancelation because of 'technical difficulties' and the ships pretty much go out in all weather.

Pride of York and Bruges are also scheduled to undergo quite a big refit in Poland, the aim being to modernise the vessels and ensure they are serviceable beyond 2020. This year marks their 30th year operating out of Hull.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Andrew White on January 20, 2017, 03:40:18 PM
Will be great for the Pride of York and Bruges to get a good refit, the Pride of York would need it more the the Pride of Bruges.  Does anyone know what they are upgrading onboard?.  Are they upgrading the cabins and including tv and free wifi like Stena have in cabin, some of the cabin would need modernized some look awful.
Looking forward to seeing the pics of the upgrade and look forward traveling on them in the summer,
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 20, 2017, 04:03:52 PM
Will be great for the Pride of York and Bruges to get a good refit, the Pride of York would need it more the the Pride of Bruges.  Does anyone know what they are upgrading onboard?.  Are they upgrading the cabins and including tv and free wifi like Stena have in cabin, some of the cabin would need modernized some look awful.
Looking forward to seeing the pics of the upgrade and look forward traveling on them in the summer,
I recall reading somewhere they were to get a lot of technical work done (as you'd expect).  Not so sure about the passenger accommodation though.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 20, 2017, 09:40:47 PM
http://www.cruiseandferry.net/articles/po-ferries-to-upgrade-two-ferries-for-16385-million-1#.WIKDwIXXLIU

http://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/p-o-ferries-to-upgrade-pride-of-york-and-pride-of-bruges-to-secure-hull-route-into-2020s/story-29939754-detail/story.html
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 20, 2017, 09:44:25 PM
European Endeavour has been using Birkenhead 12 quays for the past few days, I believe due to problems with the lock gates at Liverpool.

Any photos?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 26, 2017, 12:26:19 AM
For those of you on Facebook, some pics of the work being done to the passenger spaces of PoY

https://www.facebook.com/AecorMarine/photos/pcb.1296934420371900/1296931543705521/?type=3&theater
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 26, 2017, 08:40:40 PM
Very comprehensive interior work.

Pride of Hull has emerged with the new livery, full repaint, looking as a good as when she left Fincantieri. Spirit of France has also had a full repaint, looking also very smart.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on January 26, 2017, 10:00:26 PM
Very comprehensive interior work.



To be fair from what we have seen it's only very comprehensive interior work of two fairly small passenger areas of the ship. I heard that quite a lot is being done in cabin areas and not much else.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 27, 2017, 01:33:24 PM
The Bruges and York were in good condition prior to refit. Their very different to the Dover ships. Maintenance, cleaning, food / catering are all to a higher standard. They probably don't need fully gutting, the corridors and general areas - Coffee Shop etc all looked tidy, cleaner than several ships on the Irish Sea. I'm surprised they refitted 'The Brasserie' (Formerly Langan’s Brasserie) - from photos I had seen it looked in better condition than other vessels in the fleet!

I think given the Bruges / York have reached the 30 year mark, it’s a significant amount of investment. I understand she is receiving a lot of mechanical and exterior overhaul work.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: hhvferry on January 27, 2017, 08:00:13 PM
The Bruges and York were in good condition prior to refit. Their very different to the Dover ships. Maintenance, cleaning, food / catering are all to a higher standard.
When was the last time you sailed on either of the ships? I absolutely love these two but few would consider them to be in particularly good condition, especially the York.  The food in the buffet is also pretty grim a lot of the time.

Although I doubt the food will improve much hopefully P&O's refit budget will stretch to making them at least feel looked after rather than the down-at-heel afterthoughts they had been allowed to become.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 27, 2017, 08:37:31 PM
The Bruges and York were in good condition prior to refit. Their very different to the Dover ships. Maintenance, cleaning, food / catering are all to a higher standard.
To be fair, I have been reading and hearing exactly the opposite. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 27, 2017, 09:25:09 PM
It’s been a good while since I have been on either the York or Bruges, but from what recent videos I have seen, they look pretty decent. The interior is a little dated, but I have found them to be clean and generally tidy, better than quite a few vessels on the Irish Sea and at Dover. The crew, particularly on Pride of Bruges are pretty meticulous.

From an exterior perspective I have noticed, a good deal of rust-streaking, notably on Pride of York, but this does occur. Stena Europe regularly receives repaints, but this still happens.

Regarding the refits, I don’t think we will be seeing anything near as radical as Stena's conversion of Seafrance Manet (Stena Navigator), but for P&O, who I agree in recent years have been minimizing vessel maintenance, particularly in the field of interior styling, this is a nice investment. For P&O, I would consider this a big investment!

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on January 28, 2017, 09:30:02 PM
Pride of York looks very tired arriving in Gdansk.

They will have their work cut out during this refit.

https://www.facebook.com/jakub.bogucki/posts/1612324705461063?pnref=story

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 02, 2017, 05:13:09 AM
According to the downloadable timetable on the P&O website, there will be dry dock period on the Cairnryan service between the 4th of May and 8th of June.  HOWEVER, there appears to be no third passenger vessel on Liverpool to Dublin from 26th March until 5th of June.  IIRC everyones favourite car carrier Neptune Aegli finishes at Hull around the last week of March - could she be on her way back to Dublin?

http://www.poferries.com/medias/sys_master/h4a/h6a/9131288657950.pdf
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on February 02, 2017, 12:16:29 PM
According to the downloadable timetable on the P&O website, there will be dry dock period on the Cairnryan service between the 4th of May and 8th of June.  HOWEVER, there appears to be no third passenger vessel on Liverpool to Dublin from 26th March until 5th of June.  IIRC everyones favourite car carrier Neptune Aegli finishes at Hull around the last week of March - could she be on her way back to Dublin?

http://www.poferries.com/medias/sys_master/h4a/h6a/9131288657950.pdf
Of course, if you actually try to make a booking the dates are a little different with Cairnryan back to normal a few days earlier  Good long dry docking period regardless - it's just a shame passengers appear to be getting slightly conflicting information (though at least the downloadable timetable is overstating the length of the DD period rather than cutting it short).
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on February 02, 2017, 11:05:46 PM
Pride of York in Gdansk refit started, not gone to dry dock yet.

https://scontent-lht6-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/16508290_1619852568041610_2411554571933301329_n.jpg?oh=fa76cf03a30b63551566fe0b48975db9&oe=590079DC

Moored alongside former Val de Loire

https://scontent-lht6-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/16427756_1619852668041600_3644826827393291561_n.jpg?oh=41c6460168387ea4221a8edd911a96cf&oe=59407C61


Posted onto the Facebook by

https://www.facebook.com/jakub.bogucki?pnref=story

Quite a few ferries in Gdansk at the moment

Pride of Canterbury
Stena Vision
Sassinitz
Mecklenburg vorpommern - extended refit due to issue with train deck

King Seaways just left on Feb 1st, Bretangne left at the weekend.




Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 19, 2017, 01:04:07 AM
Pride of York looks like she has started to lose paint already!!!!  Pride of Bruges left Gdansk earlier following her own refit, bound for Zeebrugge.  Irish Sea refits next - timetable says 26th March to 29th April for Dublin service, and 28th April - 2nd June for Cairnryan.  I assume Neptune Aegli is the ship covering Dublin.  But heres the real shocker, according to the booking engine the vessel covering Cairnryan is none other than EUROPEAN SEAWAY!!!!!!  That could be interesting (if the booking engine hasn't gone nuts) given she is 10m longer than any berth at Larne can supposedly manage, meaning she'd be the longest ferry to serve the port!!!!

(http://tarbyonline.com/images/EuroSeaway.png)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 19, 2017, 12:58:26 PM
It’s not a good sign if Pride of York is losing paint. DFDS have this problem frequently. I'm not knocking the yard, it’s just given the freezing cold conditions, I imagine, paint isn't drying properly. Calais Seaways suffered paint failure the same week back in operation, after a refit, I believe by the same yard. P&O generally don't have problems with paint failure, perhaps a little around the bow doors, but this is over the course of several months. Take Pride of Bilbao, went through very strong swells and never suffered from chunks of the paint failing. Note Pride of Bilbao received refits at Falmouth. Likewise, Stena Mersey and Lagan, which are usually refitted in H&W, never loose paint, certainly not in the first week.

I do wonder, given the lower labour costs - similar to Poland, how viable it would be getting a Spanish yard to undertake refits / repaints. European Endeavour on her delivery to P&O back in 07' was repainted and refitted by a Spanish yard. A little disappointing to hear about the paint probs. Pride of York has never suffered from them before.

Re European Seaway - Wow, that is a real turn up for the books! I always wondered about the visibility of running Seaway, Burgundy, or the aging Kent / Canterbury on the North Channel. Not sure about a long term option, as you said previously Steven the vehicle deck height may be a problem. But given Seaway's age, she would be better suited to a less demanding route, rather than the very hectic Dover - Calais operation. Not sure what could be done re deck height - could the main vehicle deck not take the taller trailers?

Remontowa have posted some videos - Pretty nice looking. The work does look thorough - not a flick of paintbrush.


Pride of Canterbury - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53DsT4ML1C8
Pride of York - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epre3GxVvI8
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 19, 2017, 06:18:00 PM
It’s not a good sign if Pride of York is losing paint. DFDS have this problem frequently. I'm not knocking the yard, it’s just given the freezing cold conditions, I imagine, paint isn't drying properly. Calais Seaways suffered paint failure the same week back in operation, after a refit, I believe by the same yard. P&O generally don't have problems with paint failure, perhaps a little around the bow doors, but this is over the course of several months. Take Pride of Bilbao, went through very strong swells and never suffered from chunks of the paint failing. Note Pride of Bilbao received refits at Falmouth. Likewise, Stena Mersey and Lagan, which are usually refitted in H&W, never loose paint, certainly not in the first week.

I do wonder, given the lower labour costs - similar to Poland, how viable it would be getting a Spanish yard to undertake refits / repaints. European Endeavour on her delivery to P&O back in 07' was repainted and refitted by a Spanish yard. A little disappointing to hear about the paint probs. Pride of York has never suffered from them before.

Re European Seaway - Wow, that is a real turn up for the books! I always wondered about the visibility of running Seaway, Burgundy, or the aging Kent / Canterbury on the North Channel. Not sure about a long term option, as you said previously Steven the vehicle deck height may be a problem. But given Seaway's age, she would be better suited to a less demanding route, rather than the very hectic Dover - Calais operation. Not sure what could be done re deck height - could the main vehicle deck not take the taller trailers?

Remontowa have posted some videos - Pretty nice looking. The work does look thorough - not a flick of paintbrush.


Pride of Canterbury - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53DsT4ML1C8
Pride of York - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epre3GxVvI8
To be fair a lot depends on what prep was done before applying the paint I imagine (and what was specified in the contract).  They've been painting ships for years over there, even in snow and ice without issue. 

Regarding Seaway, it is going to be very interesting to see how she manages.  I think Canterbury/Kent/Burgundy would still be very doubtful though if for no other reason than being quite slab sided.   She still has the original 2 x 1200kW thrusters as well, rather than the uprated units on her upgraded sisters, so she has similar thruster power to the smaller vessels she will be operating opposite.  If the wind catches Seaway we could have some unplanned renovations in Larne or Cairnryan!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on March 19, 2017, 07:30:21 PM
Maybe dey been drinking the paint instead of putting it on the boat.  Sounds like P&O been taking something
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 19, 2017, 08:01:24 PM
Just on Seaway in Larne, I have it in good authority that it was considered dangerous to even attempt to bring Stena Lagan/Mersey into Larne in all but perfect conditions for an underwater survey.  Given they are just 6m longer than Seaway it does look like P&O might be taking things to the limit.  Looking forward to her coming here nonetheless.  It'll be great to see something different and having a Calais ship operating up here for a while.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 25, 2017, 03:27:32 AM
Neptune Aegli is expected to arrive in Dublin on the Morning of Sunday 26th to cover P&O's refits.  She looks to be entering service on Tuesday 28th in place of Norbank.

P&O Freight (and a number of crew)  have confirmed that European Seaway will be making her way up to the North Channel at the end of the month. At just over 17m longer than Highlander I assume arrangements will be made to accomodate her.  Most likely she will use the MacKean Quay as it is the largest berth and also has a twin tier linkspan (Seaway was designed without internal ramps).  P&O look to be keeping to the normal timetable, which means Seaway will almost certainly have to operate in drive through mode rather than as a stern only loader.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 25, 2017, 06:38:48 PM
I thought Seaway would fit. The fact Seaway is a Ro-Ro makes sense for Larne. Norbay, I imagine, was very impractical on a short operation like Larne - Cairnryan.

Pride of Burgundy, Hull, York, Bruges and Canterbury, look very smart after full repaints and refit. Spirit of France recently got a repaint too.

Not sure about Irish Sea. I believe European Endeavour, European Causeway and European Highlander got a full repaints last year, I imagine they will just get certain sections repainted. Decks on European Enderavour could do with a repaint.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on March 28, 2017, 05:14:24 PM
European Causeway and European Highlander only had short dry dockings in 2016 if I recall correctly.

European Seaway will be a tight fit at Larne - on paper she shouldn't really fit so I hope P&O have done their homework and she doesn't demolish anything or damage herself while she is there!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 29, 2017, 08:34:08 AM
European Causeway and European Highlander only had short dry dockings in 2016 if I recall correctly
Correct.  They got a weekend each last year with no cover provided. 

It has been reported that P&O are spending a total of £1.2m on Norbay, Norbank, Causeway, and Highlander this year at Cammell Laird.  £1.2m sounds a lot at first glance, but when you consider the work is to include hull repairs, blasting, paint jobs and deck renewals there surely won't be much money left over for internal refurbishment!  P&O of course have talked up the fact that they are refurbishing the food courts on Highlander and Causeway this year.  All vessels are getting just over 2 weeks each.  It is confirmed Neptune Aegli is covering at Dublin and European Seaway at Larne, with Seaway now having her own information page on the P&O website.  Needless to say it's been a busy year for dry dockings involving Irish Sea vessels.

I thought Seaway would fit. The fact Seaway is a Ro-Ro makes sense for Larne. Norbay, I imagine, was very impractical on a short operation like Larne - Cairnryan.

Pride of Burgundy, Hull, York, Bruges and Canterbury, look very smart after full repaints and refit. Spirit of France recently got a repaint too.

Not sure about Irish Sea. I believe European Endeavour, European Causeway and European Highlander got a full repaints last year, I imagine they will just get certain sections repainted. Decks on European Enderavour could do with a repaint.
There doesn't appear to be any plans at the moment to dry dock Endeavour during this period of DD's at least.  There are still question marks over European Seaway but as I said above we can only assume P&O have done their homework, and have robust routines/procedures in place to make it work.  When you talk about Seaway being a roro I assume you meant to refer to her drive through loading capability (all vehicle ferries are roll on roll off, the key is in the name ;) ).  This should in theory help with turnaround times and timekeeping of course.  It also appears that she may have a little more clearance on her vehicle decks than Norbay which will please hauliers I am sure.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Chief on April 18, 2017, 11:04:19 AM
Where has European Highlander gone? It has not registered on Marine Traffic for a few weeks? 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on April 18, 2017, 05:53:45 PM
Where has European Highlander gone? It has not registered on Marine Traffic for a few weeks?

Very much business as usual.

To be honest I tend to check company website booking engines as a back-up to MarineTraffic as it isn't always 100%.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 23, 2017, 08:10:23 PM
Seaway is delayed by a week as it looks like Norbay's dry docking is going to over-run until next Friday!  Seaway in service on Saturday 6th according to the revised Larne timetable.  Work still ongoing at the berth in Larne by the looks of things as well
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: ferryfan on May 02, 2017, 10:47:41 AM
Seaway is delayed by a week as it looks like Norbay's dry docking is going to over-run until next Friday!  Seaway in service on Saturday 6th according to the revised Larne timetable.  Work still ongoing at the berth in Larne by the looks of things as well

Seaway is en route expected in Larne tomorrow morning.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 02, 2017, 02:13:26 PM
European Seaway left Calais yesterday morning with a destination of Larne.  Currently passing Milford Haven.  As ferryfan says, she's expected in Larne tomorrow morning - approx7/8 am
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on May 05, 2017, 09:50:55 PM
What was wrong with Norway?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 06, 2017, 02:22:40 AM
What was wrong with Norway?
I believe its quite cold.  You wouldn't like it, the drink is expensive  :o

EUROPEAN SEAWAY entered commercial service this evening with the (slightly late) 20:00 departure from Larne.  EUROPEAN HIGHLANDER is expected to sail for Cammell-Laird in the morning.  As expected it appears she is less than ideal for Larne, BUT it seems so far so good.  They've had a good few days of sea trials in any case, and haven't exactly been conserving fuel either!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 07, 2017, 03:25:26 PM
Turnarounds taking a bit longer than normal, but she's making time up enroute which is good to see!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on May 14, 2017, 07:55:58 PM
Found some great photos of the European Seaway on the north channel route here:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmackey/albums/72157680432865993
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on May 14, 2017, 09:52:31 PM
Great photos. From the pics of her cardeck, the loads don't seem great. Good few cars, not a great deal of freight though. Hope the main deck was fuller. European Seaway seems tidy for a 26 year-old Dover veteran. Lot of P&O Stena Line branding appearing.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 15, 2017, 02:59:21 PM
Great photos. From the pics of her cardeck, the loads don't seem great. Good few cars, not a great deal of freight though. Hope the main deck was fuller. European Seaway seems tidy for a 26 year-old Dover veteran. Lot of P&O Stena Line branding appearing.

Looking at the tags, the photos seem to have been taken Saturday daytime so not surprised there isn't much freight to be seen on the upper deck.

Looks like a nice ship tho.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Matt73 on May 25, 2017, 11:25:43 PM
Does anybody know why the Pride of Bruges has been at the Botlek shipyard in Rotterdam since 11th May please?  I thought the big internal refit was to be done in Poland?

Thanks.

Matt
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on May 26, 2017, 10:41:07 AM
Does anybody know why the Pride of Bruges has been at the Botlek shipyard in Rotterdam since 11th May please?  I thought the big internal refit was to be done in Poland?

Thanks.

Matt

Gearbox issue - out until 16 June.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Matt73 on May 28, 2017, 05:09:57 PM
Does anybody know why the Pride of Bruges has been at the Botlek shipyard in Rotterdam since 11th May please?  I thought the big internal refit was to be done in Poland?

Thanks.

Matt

Gearbox issue - out until 16 June.

Thanks Paddy.

Matt
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 29, 2017, 04:21:48 PM
The latest Shippax traffic statistics for May, which have been seen by NIFS, indicate that EUROPEAN SEAWAY proved a success story as a relief vessel at Larne.

https://wp.me/p8Bfsp-1ew (https://wp.me/p8Bfsp-1ew)

Stena didn't get the uplift in traffic they would have been hoping for!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on June 29, 2017, 08:04:56 PM
That's good news! Makes a change, it's usually P&O getting screwed and Stena grabbing the loot ::)

I have to say, I did speculate about Seaway coming to Larne for the best part of two years, with many insisting it was a non-starter. For once my theory proved correct! She did indeed fit and operate without incident. I did note the narrower linkspan, but apart from that, and perhaps a less than ideal passenger experience, she most certainly worked well.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 30, 2017, 06:55:07 AM
That's good news! Makes a change, it's usually P&O getting screwed and Stena grabbing the loot ::)

I have to say, I did speculate about Seaway coming to Larne for the best part of two years, with many insisting it was a non-starter. For once my theory proved correct! She did indeed fit and operate without incident. I did note the narrower linkspan, but apart from that, and perhaps a less than ideal passenger experience, she most certainly worked well.
Planning and preparation appeared to be the key.  Though I note that she never really had to operate in adverse weather either, which is when she would really have been tested at both ports.  Still, P&O should be applauded for making the move. 

Having travelled on her myself I'd say the passenger experience wasn't all that bad.  The main onboard issue seemed to be with toilets and the use of cabins as the ladies (and baby changing) in particular.  There were also a lot of complaints about the noise she makes in port - I didn't personally think it was that bad, but I don't have to live beside it!  She wasn't a fantastic fit at either port either.  But still, a bit of positive news for P&O!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: PaddyL on July 05, 2017, 04:11:06 PM
That's good news! Makes a change, it's usually P&O getting screwed and Stena grabbing the loot ::)

I have to say, I did speculate about Seaway coming to Larne for the best part of two years, with many insisting it was a non-starter. For once my theory proved correct! She did indeed fit and operate without incident. I did note the narrower linkspan, but apart from that, and perhaps a less than ideal passenger experience, she most certainly worked well.

In theory she wasn't a fit for Larne - P&O just engineered solutions to make it possible so those  of us who said the Seaway wouldn't did so on the basis of the available facts.  She was also a marginal  fit and a long-term  solution would need more changes.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 08, 2017, 10:56:59 PM
That's good news! Makes a change, it's usually P&O getting screwed and Stena grabbing the loot ::)

I have to say, I did speculate about Seaway coming to Larne for the best part of two years, with many insisting it was a non-starter. For once my theory proved correct! She did indeed fit and operate without incident. I did note the narrower linkspan, but apart from that, and perhaps a less than ideal passenger experience, she most certainly worked well.

In theory she wasn't a fit for Larne - P&O just engineered solutions to make it possible so those  of us who said the Seaway wouldn't did so on the basis of the available facts.  She was also a marginal  fit and a long-term  solution would need more changes.
Definitely.

Also TC, she didn't operate entirely without incident, but as Paddy says solutions were engineered to make her work and certainly she lost far fewer sailings than those of us who were more pessimistic than yourself expected.  Had the weather turned nasty I'm led to believe things could have gotten very interesting indeed.  Hopefully she will return in the future, but with changes made taking into account what was learned during her spell on the North Channel.

One thing that was made very apparent by the visit of Seaway (and others) to Larne recently was just how dated the infrastructure at Larne is by modern standards.  That a vessel that is some 16 years old and by no means state-of-the-art couldn't be accommodated properly by the linkspan's was a bit shocking, never mind that Seatruck's P-series appear to be a no-go as well so far as commercial operation is concerned.  As I keep saying, if P&O invested some money at Larne perhaps they could make much more of a success of the place (and maybe, just maybe, attract another freight operator to the port to offer a diagonal link to England (where the growth is in terms of ferry traffic from NI) if they continue not to do so themselves).  For example, the Seatruck P-series and FSG class are well within the stated size limits of the port (unlike Seaway), but thats no use if they can't load and discharge their cargo!  Its not like the P-series are a non-standard fit either, they've managed fine at many ports after all.  Perhaps its a case of not replacing any of the linkspans until they are about ready to fall down, as was the case at Cairnryan?  5 years ago it was almost unthinkable that a 203m long ropax would berth successfully and discharge cargo at Cairnryan Harbour, yet thats exactly what happened recently (albeit on just the lower level).  If anything the successful visit of European Seaway has made those of us who want to see the fortunes of the port of Larne turned around properly even more frustrated.  As traffic continues to grow on the routes to England from the Island, Belfast continues to leave Larne in its wake, yet in contrast to the Port of Belfast the Port of Larne has barely changed in decades.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: ferryfan on August 09, 2017, 10:40:49 PM
European Endeavour is in Cammel Laird  wet basin and appears to have been there for a few days. Any info on this?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on August 10, 2017, 10:53:35 PM
European Endeavour is in Cammel Laird  wet basin and appears to have been there for a few days. Any info on this?

European Endeavour never got a dry-docking during the spring, so I'm guessing Cammel Laird's are doing an express refit. I think a similar arrangement occurred during previous years.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 25, 2017, 10:22:24 PM
European Endeavour is in Cammel Laird  wet basin and appears to have been there for a few days. Any info on this?

European Endeavour never got a dry-docking during the spring, so I'm guessing Cammel Laird's are doing an express refit. I think a similar arrangement occurred during previous years.
They never do seem to give her the same love as the Dutch built sisters, do they?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on August 26, 2017, 01:18:57 PM
Would endeavour fit at Larne to Cairnryan ok? Dey should have kept Ambassador instead of giving it to stena.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 30, 2017, 06:10:06 AM
Would endeavour fit at Larne to Cairnryan ok? Dey should have kept Ambassador instead of giving it to stena.
Theoretically Endeavour might squeeze in to Larne but with less passenger capacity than the existing vessels I'm not really sure why they would want her to? 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 30, 2017, 11:35:51 PM
EUROPEAN ENDEAVOUR left lairds yesterday, and looks just like she did when she got there ;)
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 02, 2017, 09:23:32 PM
EUROPEAN ENDEAVOUR left lairds yesterday, and looks just like she did when she got there ;)

European Endeavour is in Cammel Laird  wet basin and appears to have been there for a few days. Any info on this?

European Endeavour never got a dry-docking during the spring, so I'm guessing Cammel Laird's are doing an express refit. I think a similar arrangement occurred during previous years.
They never do seem to give her the same love as the Dutch built sisters, do they?


P&O have a bit of a love/hate relationship with European Endeavour. She likely isn't a great fit on the route from an efficiency perspective. Her running costs are far higher than the Dutch twins. However, when she's away at refit, there is an awful lot of headaches. Norbank & Norbay have to soak up the additional passengers and what freight they can.

P&O have owned Norbank and Norbay for much of their 23 years in operation. The latter also had a large stake in North Sea Ferries, so I would imagine they may have had some impact on the design and specs of the twins. Without a doubt they are better built than the racehorse class. Norbank / Norbay tend to take poor weather in their stride.

Would endeavour fit at Larne to Cairnryan ok? Dey should have kept Ambassador instead of giving it to stena.
Theoretically Endeavour might squeeze in to Larne but with less passenger capacity than the existing vessels I'm not really sure why they would want her to? 

I think she could fit, but the chances of her having an incident are much higher than European Seaway. She's more "slab sided" and could catch wind, similar to how Pride of Burgundy ended up clipping Seafrance Rodin a few years ago. I wouldn't rule out European Endeavour covering for refits at Larne sometime in the future.

I'm guessing freight would load through her stern (using internal ramps), once on the upper deck, trucks would be backed up until the stern partial open deck is full, then rather regular drive through conditions would apply. Maindeck would simply be drive through. Once in Cairnryan she could unload 'bow in', using bow door etc.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 02, 2017, 09:53:00 PM
EUROPEAN ENDEAVOUR left lairds yesterday, and looks just like she did when she got there ;)

Ya she'll keep soldiering on. Though P&O have been flashing the cash this year. Bruges and York are looking very tidy. I think Channel House are taking inspiration from Stena's rather successful life-extension work on Stena Europe. Bruges and York are a good few years younger, so I would imagine they are expecting to keep them for another 5 - 7 years.

Isle of Inishmore and Ulysses are showing plenty of rust-streaking. Oscar Wilde looks in much better condition.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Ambassador73 on September 06, 2017, 06:25:29 PM
Endeavour has been a stern-only loader for some years now, her main deck bow doors are welded up.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on September 07, 2017, 09:15:33 PM
Endeavour has been a stern-only loader for some years now, her main deck bow doors are welded up.

I would say if she was to operate from Larne, P&O would want her in 'drive through' mode. During her Dover stint the bow doors were in operation. I'm sure they could be brought back into operation if the need arose. European Seaway worked well at Larne, so I imagine she will return.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 14, 2017, 12:56:44 AM
For those that missed it, Pride of Kent ran aground in Calais a few days ago.  I’m told the damage to her is quite serious and she will be off service for a while.  Currently at Dunkerque.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 01, 2018, 07:30:45 AM
2017 didn’t end well for P&O at Dover unfortunately.  As previously mentioned, Kent sustained significant damage at Calais when blown of course.  No definitive return to service date as of yet but indications at present point to her being out of service for months rather than weeks.  There have been unconfirmed reports that she will have a new gearbox fitted at Rotterdam - she’s currently at Dunkerque.

Spirit of Britain has been in and out of service since around Xmas with what have been reported as boiler issues.  Passengers have complained that the vessel hasn’t been heated on Twitter apparently.


TC’s favourite accountant ;), P&O Ferries CEO Helen Deeble is stepping aside.  Her place is being taken by Managing Director Janette Bell.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 29, 2018, 03:23:13 PM
European Endeavour is due to be taken out of service for dry docking this weekend. Stena Carrier will provide cover for her on the Dublin - Liverpool route from 01/04/18 to 25/04/18 operating 0300 ex Liverpool and 1500 ex Dublin.

Stena Carrier is currently at anchor off Rosslare since completing service for Stena Line covering the refit of Stena Horizon on the Rosslare - Cherbourg route on a Monday 26/03/18. It is confirmed she will make her first arrival at P&O berth 25 in Dublin Port on 01/04/18 at 0730hrs.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 01, 2018, 01:45:31 PM
Stena Carrier seems a big improvement on Neptune Agile. Good levels of car deck space. About 700 more lane meters than European Endeavour. I would find it interesting to see the efficiency levels - Endeavour vs Carrier.

If the bow doors on European Endeavour were brought back into operation, a refit arrangement with Stena could be an interesting option. Stena provide P&O with a vessel - eg Stena Carrier / Hibernia / Horizon for refits, and Stena use European Endeavour for month to cover Adventurer and Superfast X's dry-dockings.

In theory, following berthing trials, I could envisage some senario like that, as both companies could bring something to the table. Stena Horizon, I don't believe is a good refit option for Stena at Holyhead looking forward. On both occassions, she struggled. I recall in the past, European Endeavour's sister ship (prior to being delivered to LD Lines - I think she was named "T Rex") operated with relative ease from Holyhead. Naturally, her lower capacity than Adventurer was an issue, but from a turnaround perspective she was successful.

Next year, I would imagine European Seaway will be covering at Larne. Could she offer cover for Stena at Holyhead? Or operate in lieu of Superfast VII / VIII, the latter covering at Holyhead? Could Pride of Canterbury / Kent squeeze into Larne, and once duties have been completed, cover for Stena at Belfast, before going to perhaps H&W for a refit?


Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on April 01, 2018, 02:25:44 PM
One important thing to remember is that Stena Carrier is owned by Stena RoRo and not Stena Line. When Stena Line used her to cover Rosslare-Cherbourg she was formally chartered from Stena RoRo in the same manner P&O have now chartered her for Dublin-Liverpool.

Stena Line and Stena Roro are, for all intense and purposes, totally separate entities.

I doubt, therefore, that Stena Line would enter such an arrangement with a direct competitor such as P&O.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 01, 2018, 02:46:19 PM
Stena do have a pooling arrangement with Irish Ferries, who are by far a bigger adversary than P&O.

It's just a theory, but if European Seaway can operate Larne - Cairnryan, I would think Belfast to Cairnryan would be straight forward enough.

StenaRoRo is indeed a separate company from Stena Line, but I imagine the latter could offer competitive charter rates, and likewise P&O could offer Stena Line a similar deal with European Seaway.

European Endeavour would be ideal for Holyhead, however her bow-doors would have to be brought back into operation for such an operation.

Brittany Ferries have a cosy arrangement with Stena Line. Stena Baltica is owned by Brittany Ferries, and likewise, Connemara is a Stena RoRo vessel.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on April 01, 2018, 02:52:33 PM
Stena do have a pooling arrangement with Irish Ferries, who are by far a bigger adversary than P&O.

It's just a theory, but if European Seaway can operate Larne - Cairnryan, I would think Belfast to Cairnryan would be straight forward enough.

StenaRoRo is indeed a separate company from Stena Line, but I imagine the latter could offer competitive charter rates, and likewise P&O could offer Stena Line a similar deal with European Seaway.

European Endeavour would be ideal for Holyhead, however her bow-doors would have to be brought back into operation for such an operation.

Brittany Ferries have a cosy arrangement with Stena Line. Stena Baltica is owned by Brittany Ferries, and likewise, Connemara is a Stena RoRo vessel.
Is dis an April fools?  Stena pooling with Irish Ferries ha ha
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 01, 2018, 03:15:08 PM
During the refits on the southern channel, Stena Line charter space on Isle of Inishmore, while Stena Europe is in dry-dock for a 2 - 3 week period. They have been doing this for several years.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: hhvferry on April 01, 2018, 03:31:28 PM
Stena Line and Stena RoRo are separate, but they very much operate in concert with one another when required - so I imagine the process of Stena Line chartering the Carrier is altogether different to P&O doing so.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: IFPete on April 01, 2018, 04:39:57 PM
Stena and Irish Ferries work very closely at Holyhead.

If one ferries passengers are running late they can transfer onto the later vessel,

Stena Adventurer uses Ulysses for shelter during rough crossings.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: A83 on April 02, 2018, 06:54:38 PM
That's an interesting point. How does Ulysses shelter Stena Adventurer?

Does this just happen during berthing in Holyhead? Or can she shelter Adventurer in open sea?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 02, 2018, 08:02:50 PM
Stena Carrier seems a big improvement on Neptune Agile. Good levels of car deck space. About 700 more lane meters than European Endeavour. I would find it interesting to see the efficiency levels - Endeavour vs Carrier.

If the bow doors on European Endeavour were brought back into operation, a refit arrangement with Stena could be an interesting option. Stena provide P&O with a vessel - eg Stena Carrier / Hibernia / Horizon for refits, and Stena use European Endeavour for month to cover Adventurer and Superfast X's dry-dockings.

In theory, following berthing trials, I could envisage some senario like that, as both companies could bring something to the table. Stena Horizon, I don't believe is a good refit option for Stena at Holyhead looking forward. On both occassions, she struggled. I recall in the past, European Endeavour's sister ship (prior to being delivered to LD Lines - I think she was named "T Rex") operated with relative ease from Holyhead. Naturally, her lower capacity than Adventurer was an issue, but from a turnaround perspective she was successful.

Next year, I would imagine European Seaway will be covering at Larne. Could she offer cover for Stena at Holyhead? Or operate in lieu of Superfast VII / VIII, the latter covering at Holyhead? Could Pride of Canterbury / Kent squeeze into Larne, and once duties have been completed, cover for Stena at Belfast, before going to perhaps H&W for a refit?
Im not sure how EUROPEAN SEAWAY would be a good cover vessel for Stena at Holyhead.  Her passenger capacity would be a major issue for instance, as it would also be between Belfast and Cairnryan.  You forget also that Stena Line and Stena Roro are separate companies.  P&O are chartering STENA CARRIER at the market rate from Stena RoRo - if Stena LINE were involved do you really think they would approve of giving one of their competitors MORE capacity?  The timing of the charter also appears to suit RoRo, as did the charter of STENA NORDICA (which by then had passed to Stena RoRo) to DFDS.

Stena do have a pooling arrangement with Irish Ferries, who are by far a bigger adversary than P&O.

It's just a theory, but if European Seaway can operate Larne - Cairnryan, I would think Belfast to Cairnryan would be straight forward enough.

StenaRoRo is indeed a separate company from Stena Line, but I imagine the latter could offer competitive charter rates, and likewise P&O could offer Stena Line a similar deal with European Seaway.

European Endeavour would be ideal for Holyhead, however her bow-doors would have to be brought back into operation for such an operation.

Brittany Ferries have a cosy arrangement with Stena Line. Stena Baltica is owned by Brittany Ferries, and likewise, Connemara is a Stena RoRo vessel.
Stena RoRo will take the offer for a vessel that suits Stena RoRo. If this wasn't the case we would more likely than not have HIGHLANDER and BLUE PUTTEES operating between Belfast and Cairnryan at present!  The whole point of having separate companies is that they will do what commercially makes sense for them.  As for there being a pooling arrangement with Irish Ferries, I think you are confusing a pooling arrangement with a space charter at the going commercial rate.  In a pooling arrangement both companies would be operating their vessels on a common schedule interchangeably with the same far structure and offers, rather than two different competing schedules!

With regard to Brittany Ferries, they needed tonnage and Stena RoRo happen to own some which was suitable.  This, again, is chartered at a rate acceptable to Stena RoRo and if a better offer came in then the vessel would go to that operator instead.  To be honest people read FAR to much into the perceived relationship between Brittany Ferries and the Stena Sphere.  STENA BALTICA/COTENTIN is a vessel that was surplus to requirements at Brittany Ferries and put on the open market.  Stena did look to purchase her but the purchase price was in excess of what they were prepared to pay.  If the companies were that blind to taking the best commercial offer then would Horizon not be sub-charted out and Etretat or Asterion/Connemara not be brought in (and upgraded) instead?

Stena and Irish Ferries work very closely at Holyhead.

If one ferries passengers are running late they can transfer onto the later vessel,

Stena Adventurer uses Ulysses for shelter during rough crossings.
Work closely?  They are competitors!  Like any business it makes sense to assist a competitor (and charge them) in a case were the assistance might need reciprocated.  There are cases when this happens with P&O and Stena on the North Channel as well.  As for providing shelter during rough crossings, this is not only untrue but also sounds outright dangerous!  How did the older and smaller vessels manage to cross without Ulysses?

It is true that in certain wind conditions that Ulysses provides shelter to Adventurer when BERTHING at Holyhead, and likewise when the wind conditions dictate SSF X provides shelter at Holyhead for Epsilon.  HOWEVER, this is a case of co-operational seamanship between skippers rather than a commercial arrangement between the companies themselves.  For safety's sake all skippers do and should work together.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: IFPete on April 04, 2018, 01:32:58 PM
The next rough day observe Stena Adventurer travelling behind Ulysses at a slight distance to the side but close enough for shelter.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on April 04, 2018, 05:09:38 PM
The next rough day observe Stena Adventurer travelling behind Ulysses at a slight distance to the side but close enough for shelter.

And what about when Stena Adventurer sails before Ulysses? Eg ex Holyhead at 1400 while Ulysses goes at 1410 or ex Dublin at 2040 when Ulysses sails at 2055?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Davy Jones on April 04, 2018, 09:01:09 PM
Sheltering at sea wouldn't work. To offer any benefit, one vessel would have to be so close to the other, any advantage would be lost as soon as a gust of wind hits the first ship, she would collide with the second one within a few seconds. - and of course what looks close on AIS isn't necessarily so.

The way it works at the Holyhead births is thus: The single pier points almost to North. Terminal 3 (Irish Ferries) is on the west side and Terminal 5 (Stena Line) is on the east. During Westerly winds, The Irish Ferries vessel is forced onto the berth and the Stena Vessel is forced away. It is easier to berth on terminal 5 if there is already a vessel moored on Terminal 3, as the latter is acting as a wind break. During Easterlies the opposite occurs.

Sometimes they use each others  berths. I remember once when I was to travel on Nordica, I was loaded on at Terminal 3. (Pre-Epsilon days so the berth was vacant)

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: The insider on April 04, 2018, 09:08:47 PM
Shelter at sea  is this some kind of joke 25 years  at sea myself   unbelievable nonsense  the ships would  have to be welded  together    no to mention  rules of the road  and colregs   
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: NathanBrady on April 04, 2018, 09:43:36 PM
Dis is funny.  Dey would have to be so close one would hit de other!!!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 04, 2018, 11:47:44 PM
Shelter at sea  is this some kind of joke 25 years  at sea myself   unbelievable nonsense  the ships would  have to be welded  together    no to mention  rules of the road  and colregs
This is what I would have thought, surely too dangerous to have them close enough to make a difference.  Are they not meant to keep a certain distance in open water anyway?

In any case, how did ships like Cambria and Hibernia manage without Ulysses to protect them!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Davy Jones on April 05, 2018, 02:36:18 AM
Cambria. Hibernia and all the other ferries of the Sealink and B&I era were smaller ships that used the inner harbour berths at Holyhead. Stena Explorer also had this advantage, as does the Swift at terminal 2.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 05, 2018, 04:38:52 PM
Cambria. Hibernia and all the other ferries of the Sealink and B&I era were smaller ships that used the inner harbour berths at Holyhead. Stena Explorer also had this advantage, as does the Swift at terminal 2.
I was referring to the notion that Adventurer uses Ulysses for shelter at sea rather than when berthing :).

Edit: also the mailboats, not the Sealink car ferries
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on April 06, 2018, 11:53:50 PM
Stena Carrier seems a big improvement on Neptune Agile. Good levels of car deck space. About 700 more lane meters than European Endeavour. I would find it interesting to see the efficiency levels - Endeavour vs Carrier.

If the bow doors on European Endeavour were brought back into operation, a refit arrangement with Stena could be an interesting option. Stena provide P&O with a vessel - eg Stena Carrier / Hibernia / Horizon for refits, and Stena use European Endeavour for month to cover Adventurer and Superfast X's dry-dockings.

In theory, following berthing trials, I could envisage some senario like that, as both companies could bring something to the table. Stena Horizon, I don't believe is a good refit option for Stena at Holyhead looking forward. On both occassions, she struggled. I recall in the past, European Endeavour's sister ship (prior to being delivered to LD Lines - I think she was named "T Rex") operated with relative ease from Holyhead. Naturally, her lower capacity than Adventurer was an issue, but from a turnaround perspective she was successful.

Next year, I would imagine European Seaway will be covering at Larne. Could she offer cover for Stena at Holyhead? Or operate in lieu of Superfast VII / VIII, the latter covering at Holyhead? Could Pride of Canterbury / Kent squeeze into Larne, and once duties have been completed, cover for Stena at Belfast, before going to perhaps H&W for a refit?
Im not sure how EUROPEAN SEAWAY would be a good cover vessel for Stena at Holyhead.  Her passenger capacity would be a major issue for instance, as it would also be between Belfast and Cairnryan.  You forget also that Stena Line and Stena Roro are separate companies.  P&O are chartering STENA CARRIER at the market rate from Stena RoRo - if Stena LINE were involved do you really think they would approve of giving one of their competitors MORE capacity?  The timing of the charter also appears to suit RoRo, as did the charter of STENA NORDICA (which by then had passed to Stena RoRo) to DFDS.

Stena do have a pooling arrangement with Irish Ferries, who are by far a bigger adversary than P&O.

It's just a theory, but if European Seaway can operate Larne - Cairnryan, I would think Belfast to Cairnryan would be straight forward enough.

StenaRoRo is indeed a separate company from Stena Line, but I imagine the latter could offer competitive charter rates, and likewise P&O could offer Stena Line a similar deal with European Seaway.

European Endeavour would be ideal for Holyhead, however her bow-doors would have to be brought back into operation for such an operation.

Brittany Ferries have a cosy arrangement with Stena Line. Stena Baltica is owned by Brittany Ferries, and likewise, Connemara is a Stena RoRo vessel.
Stena RoRo will take the offer for a vessel that suits Stena RoRo. If this wasn't the case we would more likely than not have HIGHLANDER and BLUE PUTTEES operating between Belfast and Cairnryan at present!  The whole point of having separate companies is that they will do what commercially makes sense for them.  As for there being a pooling arrangement with Irish Ferries, I think you are confusing a pooling arrangement with a space charter at the going commercial rate.  In a pooling arrangement both companies would be operating their vessels on a common schedule interchangeably with the same far structure and offers, rather than two different competing schedules!

With regard to Brittany Ferries, they needed tonnage and Stena RoRo happen to own some which was suitable.  This, again, is chartered at a rate acceptable to Stena RoRo and if a better offer came in then the vessel would go to that operator instead.  To be honest people read FAR to much into the perceived relationship between Brittany Ferries and the Stena Sphere.  STENA BALTICA/COTENTIN is a vessel that was surplus to requirements at Brittany Ferries and put on the open market.  Stena did look to purchase her but the purchase price was in excess of what they were prepared to pay.  If the companies were that blind to taking the best commercial offer then would Horizon not be sub-charted out and Etretat or Asterion/Connemara not be brought in (and upgraded) instead?


It's just a theory. Pride of Burgundy would be an interesting option as a relief vessel for the North Channel. She has the required capacity for Stena at Belfast, and has the same dimensions as European Seaway. The only issue for Burgundy operating from Larne is of course her rather slab sided design. Wind could pose a problem, she has in the past made contact with Seafrance Berlioz. (However Dover vessels have had plenty of incidents over the years - Pride of Provence (Stena Empereur), Pride of Aquitaine (Prins Filip / Calais Seaways), most recently Pride of Kent)

From what I have gathered the incident with Pride of Kent (which has seen her in dry-dock for several months) was more down to an elaborate maneuver. A similar incident occurred in the early 2000s with Pride of Provence. The captain undertook a rather unusual and elaborate swing at the harbour entrance at Dover, the harbour wall catching the stern of Provence.

I think with the right weather conditions, Pride of Kent / Canterbury could operate from Larne, and then if Stena were interested, charter her for a few weeks to cover Belfast and possibly Holyhead. As Pride of Kent / Canterbury has mezzanine decks, her already tight deck height is restricted further (not sure by how much), which does make Pride of Burgundy the more attractive option. (I understand Burgundy, like Europen Seaway has no mezzanine decks, allowing larger trailers to be carried).

I wouldn't rule out some sort of deal on refits (both companies chartering to each other at the market rate). I would think Stena would benefit from having a very capable (if not more capable) vessel operate Belfast to Cairnryan - allowing Superfast VII to go to Holyhead to cover Superfast X and Adventurer. Canterbury, Burgundy, and Kent are all very versatile vessels, and Stena RoRo don't exactly have binders of ships available that can operate from Belfast to Cairnryan - not forgetting Stena Horizon's period cover at Holyhead was an utter disaster. Delays of two hours discharging passengers is abysmal.

Stena RoRo have a good number of vessles P&O could charter for Dublin to Liverpool, and its not the first time a Dover vessel has been used on the North Channel - to much surprise (though not to myself) European Seaway was the designated relief vessel in 2017 for Larne. I would have thought it quite a logical move by both companies.

With regards to Stena's relationship with Brittany Ferries, I personally see it as very cosy. Both companies clearly are on very good terms and have a very good relationship. (I understand one of the E-Flexers are going to BF in the early 2020s). It wouldnt surprise me if Stena don't buy a 30% stake in the company, and eventually move to buy the whole company and re-brand Brittany Ferries to Stena Line. I could envisage a scenario similar to the transition from "North Sea Ferries", to "P&O North Sea Ferries", to eventually "P&O Ferries".


Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: hhvferry on April 07, 2018, 07:32:12 AM
I imagine it would be almost impossible to get the myriad groups of farmers and local authorities that own and back Brittany Ferries to sell up. And it's somewhat improbable that Stena would want to buy them.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on April 07, 2018, 07:51:09 PM
I imagine it would be almost impossible to get the myriad groups of farmers and local authorities that own and back Brittany Ferries to sell up. And it's somewhat improbable that Stena would want to buy them.
Exactly, especially to a “foreign” company. 

BF is French, and proud of it.  Just look at the issues BF are having atm for daring to propose using a non-French crew on a single vessel for a few years!  As for Stena, it would be more grief than it’s worth.  One of the benefits of having only a few sailings to France a week is the lack of potential for he French unions to cause havoc for example.  Something Stena have had their fair share of experience of in the past.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: HSS on December 18, 2018, 04:55:55 PM
Major incident on the European Causeway this morning

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-south-scotland-46604175
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Meet the dockers on December 18, 2018, 10:32:35 PM
Major incident on the European Causeway this morning

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-south-scotland-46604175


What I don’t understand is if this incident happened mid crossing how some people were trapped in their vehicles??
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on December 18, 2018, 10:48:03 PM
Reminds me of the Epsilon incident.  European Causeway / Highlander have a very good service record.  Good to know passengers and crew are safe and no injuries.  P&O very rarely cancel a sailing, it will be interesting to see what comes to the top when incident is investigated.

An interesting note is European Highlander, European Causeway, and Stena Nordica, all sail under the flag of the Bahamas. 
There are also strong rumors the Dover ships are going to be flying FOC's soon (Limassol / Cyprus).

Also looks like European Seaway will be covering refits in Larne.  The latter underwent quite an extensive refit, paint taken back to metal work. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQrYBXPHUq4
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on December 18, 2018, 11:14:52 PM
Great video thanks for posting link, did not think they had stabilisers on this series of Ferries, were they fitted during refit ?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on December 18, 2018, 11:42:44 PM
Great video thanks for posting link, did not think they had stabilisers on this series of Ferries, were they fitted during refit ?

I believe European Seaway always had them, as did half sisters, Pride of Kent, Canterbury, and Burgundy.

European Endeavour, the Dublin to Liverpool regular,  built for Norse Merchant Ferries,  doesn't have them.

I have travelled on E.E. many times, good time-keeper.  Reasonable ship, crew keep her tidy, though its about time she got a Stena style refit.  Her sister, former Stena Alegra, had stabilisers fitted, and looks very smart following rebuild.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Cladyman on December 19, 2018, 12:01:36 AM
P&o twitter fees saying both 4am sailings are likely to sail.

Must not be any significant damage to Causeway itself if sailing less than 24hrs after incident.

A few of the Lorry Drivers sleeping I. Trucks got a rude awakening.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on December 20, 2018, 07:04:46 PM
Some images and details from The Sun

https://www.thesun.ie/news/3534256/cairnryan-ferry-passenger-shares-horror-as-trucker-dad-of-five-thought-boat-was-capsizing-fearing-this-is-it-after-vessel-battered-by-extreme-weather/amp/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 28, 2018, 10:38:04 PM
Great video thanks for posting link, did not think they had stabilisers on this series of Ferries, were they fitted during refit ?

I believe European Seaway always had them, as did half sisters, Pride of Kent, Canterbury, and Burgundy.

European Endeavour, the Dublin to Liverpool regular,  built for Norse Merchant Ferries,  doesn't have them.

I have travelled on E.E. many times, good time-keeper.  Reasonable ship, crew keep her tidy, though its about time she got a Stena style refit.  Her sister, former Stena Alegra, had stabilisers fitted, and looks very smart following rebuild.

Endeavour has flume tanks which was thought sufficient at the time for what were intended to be primarily freight ferries.  From memory Murillo (now CRAICOVIA) which is a similar vessel on the same hull form but with more passenger accommodation was built with fin stabilisers.


EUROPEAN SEAWAY is returning to Larne in May as refit relief vessel again.  Good long docking period for Highlander and Causeway this year from May 6th to June 19th.

https://www.niferry.co.uk/pos-european-seaway-to-return-to-larne-in-2019/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on December 28, 2018, 10:48:05 PM
Reminds me of the Epsilon incident.  European Causeway / Highlander have a very good service record.  Good to know passengers and crew are safe and no injuries.  P&O very rarely cancel a sailing, it will be interesting to see what comes to the top when incident is investigated.

An interesting note is European Highlander, European Causeway, and Stena Nordica, all sail under the flag of the Bahamas. 
There are also strong rumors the Dover ships are going to be flying FOC's soon (Limassol / Cyprus).

Also looks like European Seaway will be covering refits in Larne.  The latter underwent quite an extensive refit, paint taken back to metal work. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQrYBXPHUq4

P&O have confirmed the Spirits will be flying the Cypriot flag from early in the new year.  The rest of the fleet are to stay as they are (for now anyway).  The official reason is they need to stay on an EU flag.  Something to do with tax and finance.  Crew are apparently to stay the same on the same terms but that hasn’t stopped the rumours.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: ferryfan on January 12, 2019, 11:58:17 AM
It is being reported that P&O will now be registering their entire Dover fleet to Cyprus.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on January 13, 2019, 08:52:51 PM
I thought it very strange when P&O claimed they were only reflagging two vessels.  Not surprised with the latest announcement. P&O are claiming the British crews will be retained, so quite different to the Irish Ferries scenario.
However the latter are citing the need to have the vessels on an EU flag as the core reason....  Not sure how that works. 

Pride of York which sails between Hull and Zeebrugge is flagged in the Bahamas.  Likewise in the 1990s, Stena Fantasia was registered in the Bahamas, and her fleetmate, Stena Londoner.  So I don't see how not being on an EU flag is such an issue.

In reality this is part of a gradual re-flagging of the whole fleet.  First P&O Irish Sea in late 1990s, then Portsmouth (Pride of Bilbao in 2008), then P&O North Sea (c. 2010), and now Dover....  Mission Accomplished!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on January 13, 2019, 11:36:58 PM
It is being reported that P&O will now be registering their entire Dover fleet to Cyprus.

Tell me about it.  NI Ferry SIte is getting a barrage of traffic.  My now former web host wasn't to pleased lol

http://www.niferry.co.uk/po-ferries-to-re-flag-dover-calais-flagships-from-u-k-to-cyprus/

I thought it very strange when P&O claimed they were only reflagging two vessels.  Not surprised with the latest announcement. P&O are claiming the British crews will be retained, so quite different to the Irish Ferries scenario.
However the latter are citing the need to have the vessels on an EU flag as the core reason....  Not sure how that works. 

Pride of York which sails between Hull and Zeebrugge is flagged in the Bahamas.  Likewise in the 1990s, Stena Fantasia was registered in the Bahamas, and her fleetmate, Stena Londoner.  So I don't see how not being on an EU flag is such an issue.

In reality this is part of a gradual re-flagging of the whole fleet.  First P&O Irish Sea in late 1990s, then Portsmouth (Pride of Bilbao in 2008), then P&O North Sea (c. 2010), and now Dover....  Mission Accomplished!

I think its partially because they directly blamed that word beginning with B.  There could well be a legitimate reason for the Spirits to retain an EU flag as their financing possibly has this requirement (does anyone really believe P&O paid cash upfront for them?).  I doubt the other vessels would have such restrictions unless they have been remortgaged.  There was also mention in the original statement to shippax about the potential for fewer delays in port due to a reduced likelihood of inspections (as EU vessels) should the hardest of B's happen.  In reality, not much needs to change apart from the fact they will be paying even less UK tax.  At least all the Dover vessels have remained flagged in the EU and not elsewhere like the Irish Sea fleet.  It doesn't necessarily mean the end of UK crews - to be honest, they could have had less UK crew under the UK flag anyway (and it's not like they don't already have crew members from beyond the countries bordering the channel and the North Sea!).

It will be interesting to see what they do next.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Davy Jones on February 23, 2019, 10:23:32 PM
Norbay on her way to Gdansk.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on February 23, 2019, 11:05:36 PM
Expect this is part of the life-extension program.   I'm guessing the paint will be stripped back to the metal.
European Seaway received this recently.  Expect the interior will get an update. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on March 07, 2019, 07:47:39 AM
Oddly P&O didn't provide any cover vessel for the first week of their dry dockings this year.  It meant they handed a lot of traffic to Seatruck who had to transfer some of it through Warrenpoint!!!  MISTRAL is in place now she’s available but it looks like they booked a slot at Remontowa and couldn’t get cover in time.

Expect this is part of the life-extension program.   I'm guessing the paint will be stripped back to the metal.
European Seaway received this recently.  Expect the interior will get an update. 
Seaway needed it badly - she's always just got a bit of a lick and a promise.  That's P&O European Ferries/P&O Stena eradicated at last!  She also got some female passenger toilets which will make her more suitable for her relief duties on the North Channel as it was one of the main complaints last time (people having to use cabin toilets).

The handover of onboard shopping to Dufry should be starting around now as well.  It will be interesting to see what changes.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: TC on March 15, 2019, 10:08:51 PM
Norbay is looking smart. Looks like the old paint has been removed and total repaint undertaken.
Expect the interior has been modernised.

https://www.portalmorski.pl/stocznie-statki/42016-imponujaca-liczba-promow-w-gdanskiej-stoczni-remontowa-sa-zdjecia?fbclid=IwAR0TtLHcVgqdsCoITvv8NwXO_hItrIBgIQe3nEDpfMSVrk-vVlkvuqLu7ag



Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Rob 1987 on March 20, 2019, 08:08:09 AM
Norbay is Now Underway ETA Liverpool 23rd March  7.00
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 26, 2019, 09:10:22 PM
First reporback from MAIB on European Causway incident

https://www.gov.uk/maib-reports/safety-warning-about-drivers-remaining-in-vehicle-cabs-while-ferries-are-at-sea

Might force a reconfiguration of on board layouts for ferry operators to give drivers private cabins.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Trucker on March 30, 2019, 10:39:43 PM
I was on the 07.30 out of Cairnryan last Sunday morning, and as I had been on the road since 2am, I really needed a sleep.
There's a room with reclining seats for freight drivers, but very uncomfortable, I slept for 1 hour because of sheer tiredness,  but woke with a sore lower back and stiff neck.
I watched a travel programme about China during the week, and they have Pod Hotels, where you can rent a capsule for the night, basically a dormitory with enclosed sleeping quarters, and thought to myself ,wouldnt that be a great idea on the ferries.
I don't travel over the top too often, thankfully.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on March 31, 2019, 11:41:46 AM
I was on the 07.30 out of Cairnryan last Sunday morning, and as I had been on the road since 2am, I really needed a sleep.
There's a room with reclining seats for freight drivers, but very uncomfortable, I slept for 1 hour because of sheer tiredness,  but woke with a sore lower back and stiff neck.
I watched a travel programme about China during the week, and they have Pod Hotels, where you can rent a capsule for the night, basically a dormitory with enclosed sleeping quarters, and thought to myself ,wouldnt that be a great idea on the ferries.
I don't travel over the top too often, thankfully.

Stena are about to introduce this very system on some of their crossings between Germany and Sweden.

https://news.cision.com/stena-line/r/stena-line-installs-japanese-sleeping-pods,c2771617
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Trucker on March 31, 2019, 12:33:05 PM
Personally I would prefer this than sharing a cabin with up to 3 other drivers,  or the dreaded economie Brittany Ferries Portsmouth-Spain ,where at peak times there are 6 to a cabin.
Oscar Wilde is a great ferry to travel on as a freight driver, as we always get a cabin to ourselves.
Seatruck, DFDS and Cobelfret  freight ships take 12 drivers, and nearly always 1 person to a cabin.
Makes all the difference, get a good nights sleep and be fresh for the next days driving. 
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Rob 1987 on April 22, 2019, 06:12:26 PM
Norbank is Now Back In Liverpool and She Will Be Back on Liverpool -Dublin from Tonight Services and European Endeavour is In on LaUp Berth in Liverpool Docks
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: ferryfan on May 02, 2019, 04:54:33 PM
P&O have sold European Endeavour to Eckero Line. The chartered ro/ro mv Mistral which is currently operating her route is expected to remain on the route for the time being.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: giftgrub on May 02, 2019, 09:41:48 PM
Apparently Endeavor was quite expensive to run and heavy on fuel, one of the primary reasons for selling, strange move though from a large company with only a charter replacement available.

Bow doors being “unwelded” (not sure of the correct term) to allow a return to drive through service for the new owners.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 04, 2019, 08:14:48 AM
Apparently Endeavor was quite expensive to run and heavy on fuel, one of the primary reasons for selling, strange move though from a large company with only a charter replacement available.

Bow doors being “unwelded” (not sure of the correct term) to allow a return to drive through service for the new owners.
The problem with that is they were obviously welded for a reason....
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on May 17, 2019, 01:34:50 AM
EUROPEAN SEAWAY entered service on the Larne to Cairnryan route on Thursday.  EUROPEAN HIGHLANDER left Larne for Birkenhead at around 7 pm.  This year P&O have scheduled some 6 weeks for Highlander and Causeway to dry dock, with Seaway covering throughout.  She came to Larne directly from Falmouth where she had some work done (despite being dry docked twice already within the past year, with this her third yard visit within 10 months).  Her home port is now Limassol in line with the rest of the Dover based fleet.
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on June 07, 2019, 06:56:03 AM
It looks as if European Highlander is delayed in dry dock. I heard someone suggest perhaps up to 3 weeks which will surely mean European Causeway cannot go to dock this side of summer?

Could we see European Seaway heading back to Dover for the peak season and then returning to cover for Causeway at Larne later in the year?
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 21, 2019, 06:47:39 PM
It looks as if European Highlander is delayed in dry dock. I heard someone suggest perhaps up to 3 weeks which will surely mean European Causeway cannot go to dock this side of summer?

Could we see European Seaway heading back to Dover for the peak season and then returning to cover for Causeway at Larne later in the year?

That looks like what is going to happen - it is hard to see Seaway coping with the July rush on the North Channel!  Causeway could probably use a dry docking though considering shes had a fire and the well-documented cargo shift incident this year alone!  She's also lost her cow catcher of course

Highlander looks to be returning on the 28th running opposite Causeway and is now back in dry dock having been in the wet basin for a while (reports that she has rudder problems that have to be fixed before she can return to service).  I've contacted P&O earlier today to see if they can give a revised date for Causeway's dry docking but so far I haven't had a response.

https://www.niferry.co.uk/delayed-return-from-refit-for-both-stena-lines-stena-europe-and-po-ferries-european-highlander/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on June 22, 2019, 06:46:45 PM
EUROPEAN CAUSEWAY will dry dock at the start of July meaning Seaway will be staying with us a while longer.  P&O have had no option despite the obvious issues with passenger capacity.

https://www.niferry.co.uk/european-causeway-to-dry-dock-in-july/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on July 17, 2019, 04:58:42 AM
EUROPEAN SEAWAY has returned to the English Channel but only for warm layup at Dunkirk.  She will be required again at Larne during September so EUROPEAN CAUSEWAY can go back to dry dock to have this years planned work program completed.

Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 29, 2019, 06:29:55 PM
Following an incident earlier in the week onboard European Seaway, P&O Ferries are to run a single ship service with European Highlander between Larne and Cairnryan while European Causeway is off service for dry-docking.  An amended schedule is in place from 2nd-22nd September.  Obviously this will severely reduce North Channel capacity, but it appears P&O's hand was forced.

https://www.niferry.co.uk/po-ferries-single-ship-larne-cairnryan-september/

More about the reported 'technical' ::) incident

https://www.niferry.co.uk/european-seaway-doubtful/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on August 30, 2019, 09:23:20 PM
Quote
"P&O Ferries has invested in modernising the Freight Drivers Lounge on board two of its Irish Sea ferries, European Highlander and European Causeway, which operate between Larne, Northern Ireland and Cairnryan, Scotland.

The refurbished lounges now feature a contemporary interior and eight lie flat beds, giving drivers the option to sleep during the crossing, reducing the risk of fatigue whilst on the road. Each bed also features a private locker allowing belongings to be safely stored.

In addition, 37 “business class” extra legroom reclining seats have been installed, giving drivers the chance to relax whilst watching TV, or having a much-needed power nap. Additional seating and tables also now feature in the forward bars of both ships, aiming to ease congestion and improve passenger comfort, particularly at peak times.

New carpets and louvres complete the refurb, giving the lounges a fresh look and a restful atmosphere."

https://www.freightlink.co.uk/knowledge/articles/po-ferries-update-modernised-freight-drivers-lounge-irish-sea-ferries

https://www.niferry.co.uk/pr-modernised-freight-drivers-lounge-on-po-ferries-irish-sea-ferries/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 03, 2019, 09:54:35 PM
P&O Ferries have emailed freight customers about a new freight route between Tilbury and Calais.  However, when Shippax contacted Channel House directly they were told no final decision about the route had been made!  The content of the email suggests that a Ro-Ro of around 1,600 lane metres is in mind.  Although this is similar to MISTRAL I'm told that this will be a new vessel to the fleet which would be chartered in for the purpose.

Quote
"P&O Ferries is pleased to announce the launch of a new Calais - Tilbury - Calais daily service operating from end September 2019. This is in response to customer demand for an improved unaccompanied product connecting cargo flows from Calais and Continental rail connections with a location close to London, and therefore supports both your traffic flows and safeguarding your customers’ supply chains with improved BREXIT options.

The service will provide space for 12 self-drive tractor-trailers and 90 unaccompanied trailers or containers per sailing. The ship is planned to arrive in Tilbury daily at 0430 hours enabling your driver to be on the M25 before 0600 hours.

A new direct route to and from Tilbury gives you quick and direct access to the M25 London markets, the South of England and also all the Regional Distribution centres north of London / along the M1 corridor up to Birmingham.

This route saves up to 75 miles / 125 km each way versus the traditional Dover-Calais crossing.

Not only will you save fuel, but also save on drivers hours, and wear and tear on your vehicles and trailers.
Fast discharge of vessels means units available in Tilbury 0600 hours or before, placing your drivers on the M25 beating the rush hour.

Allocated space for regular round trip shippers guarantees availability to support your contracts.

Fast turnaround of units gate to gate on all our terminals."

P&O Ferries

https://www.niferry.co.uk/po-ferries-to-open-new-calais-freight-route/
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: RorieLen on September 18, 2019, 06:09:21 AM
I haven’t seen this reported on here but P&O put a notice out to customers last week stating the European Causeway has been delayed in dry dock. The ship is at Cammell Laird since 3rd September and was due back around 20-22 September but it looks as if she won’t return until 3rd October at the earliest.

It’s not a criticism, but I find it strange how companies like Stena Line and Irish Ferries have almost their every move scrutinised on forums like this while companies like P&O largely go unnoticed!
Title: Re: P&O Fleet Movements
Post by: Steven on September 18, 2019, 10:54:26 PM
I haven’t seen this reported on here but P&O put a notice out to customers last week stating the European Causeway has been delayed in dry dock. The ship is at Cammell Laird since 3rd September and was due back around 20-22 September but it looks as if she won’t return until 3rd October at the earliest.

It’s not a criticism, but I find it strange how companies like Stena Line and Irish Ferries have almost their every move scrutinised on forums like this while companies like P&O largely go unnoticed!
Must admit it has been a while since I’ve had a “debate” with TC!!  Anyway, here’s some gossip


(As I posted to the Ferries! Facebook group)

P&O Ferries EUROPEAN SEAWAY left Dunkerque last night under the tow of the tug FAIRPLAY 33 according to a post on the DFE forum.  It appears Seaway’s AIS was switched off a couple of days ago.  Destination is Gdansk.  Looks like Seaway is in a pretty bad way after her little incident last month and can’t get to Poland under her own power!!!  Apparently she was assisted at Dunkerque by no less than 4 port tugs!