Posts tagged: bc ferries

Things seen – May 2011

The Queen of Prince Rupert

The Queen of Prince Rupert

  • The Queen of Prince Rupert will become one of the few BC Ferries to see further service outside Canada following her sale to Fijian interests for inter-island use. As noted in the Fiji Sun, the ship has been renamed Lomaiviti Princess and there are some pictures of the ship, still in Canada, on the West Coast Ferries forum.

    A variety of more historical images of the Queen of Prince Rupert can be found here.

  • Perhaps due to her name, the scrapping of the Greek-owned Grecia (ex-Espresso Livorno/Espresso Grecia) in Aliaga attracted more attention than most, with youtube videos of her before the final departure and, most interestingly, of her final charge for the beach. The ship grounds herself alongside the remains of the ex-Jadrolinija Vanga, chunks of which can be seen being manhandled on shore.

    Navi e Amatori has a later image of the Grecia with demolition work in full swing.

  • Rather unnoticed, the most elderly of the 2010 Southern European scrap victims was the Peloritano, which although heavily rebuilt was originally the domestic German ferry the Fehmarn of 1927. Her final days are captured in this image at Aliaga, with fellow Italian domestic veteran the Capri (ex-Kvamsøy) in the background.
  • An easier way of disposing of unwanted ships was demonstrated by the treatment of the ro-ro Jolly Rubino; having run aground several years ago, she was stripped then sunk via a controlled demolition to form an artificial reef.
  • The occasional bumps and scrapes are a fact of life, especially for ships in relatively tight or difficult harbours. The Elyros had a small scrape with her berth at Souda but the Isola di Procida’s break for freedom in Napoli ended by slamming into the side of one of her CAREMAR fleetmates.

    Going back a few years, the Boa Vista (ex-Speedlink Vanguard/Normandie Shipper) provided the first of Kystlink’s various mishaps when she ran aground off Hirtshals, captured in a series of images here.

  • Moving onto more calamitous demises, and, whilst not a ferry, this remarkable footage from aboard the Achille Lauro before her fiery end is worth viewing.
  • The Moby Prince at Bastia

    The Moby Prince at Bastia

  • Ferry fires can be devastating. Perhaps most famous is the Moby Prince, and whilst the footage here on board the ship after the fire is interesting, the amateur video taken aboard by one of the doomed passengers, included in the opening sequence of this Italian documentary, is truly haunting. That video’s survival supports the theory that the ferocity of the fire was less the cause of death than the toxins which the fire gave off.
  • Pictures aboard the raised Herald of Free Enterprise are similarly poignant.
  • A more modern fire victim was the LISCO Gloria whose charred remains were captured up close for the Danish media.
  • I have tried to keep an eye on the latest happenings with the half-sunken ARMAS ferry Assalama, still stranded off the port of Tarfaya, Morocco. A relatively recent image is here whilst there are more images from the day of the disaster here.
  • The Sea Serenade at Corfu, August 1999

    The Sea Serenade at Corfu, August 1999

  • Whatever happened to the Sea Serenade of Poseidon Lines? Whilst, as the Arielle, her sister achieved the slightly dismal distinction of being Hellenic Mediterranean Lines’ last ever ship before sailing for scrap in 2006, the elder of the former Japanese pair rather disappeared off the radar since finishing service nearly a decade ago. She ended up renamed the Marinos D and laid up at a shipyard in Izola, Slovenia. The recent news that the floating dock there has been sold to Turkish interests has also led to speculation that the ship herself will finally also be making a move – presumably for scrap.
  • Another crop of videos from Greece:
    An atmospheric trip aboard the locally-built Lemnos of Nomikos Lines;
    A bit of the old school: a race between NEL’s Theofilos and GA Ferries’ Dimitroula;
    The Alcaeos (ex. Marella) of NEL Lines;
    Remarkable footage during a fire aboard the Knossos (ex-Svea);
    Morning arrivals in Piraeus from the Golden age – including the Knossos, Sappho and Ialyssos;
    The introduction of Fragline’s Georgios (1971)
  • What is the most popular ferry in Greece? Who knows, but the distinctly unscientific method of measuring bookings made through Viva Travel indicates it is, curiously, the Blue Horizon. Google Translate version here.
  • In Croatia, the white fleet of Jadrolinija, past and present, continues to provide splendid internet fodder, from the company’s former cruise ship the Dalmacija featuring in the video for this mid-90s Techno classic by Marusha to the strangely mesmerising 2010 time lapse video of the Marko Polo loading at Rijeka.

    There are also some interesting still images out there – such as some more classic images of veterans at Rijeka here, here and here and a superb recent shot of the little Rogac ferry Lastovo obliterated by spray.

    The image above of the Vis (ex-Sydfyn) at Ubli last Summer is almost identical to this one of her former fleetmate, the Slavija I (later Europa I).

    Lastly, there has been local access to the long laid-up Ero (the heavily modified remains of the 1931-built former Danish domestic ferry Aerø). Although reported sold for scrap in some quarters, she remains for now amongst the Jadrolinija reserve fleet in Cres. Below are some links to a series of recent images of and on board the old ship (click on the thumbnails to go to the original urls):

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    Heading back several decades, the same ship can be seen, amongst a variety of others, in these vintage Danish films from the early 1960s which pleasingly capture a completely lost age:

    Film 1
    Film 2

  • One of the most recent ships to head to Croatia is the former Pomerania, now Blue Line’s Dalmatia; seen above at Ancona in May, her final Copenhagen-ÅšwinoujÅ›cie sailing was captured in a brutally honest slideshow for the Danish daily newspaper Politiken.
  • A couple of Tirrenia items:
    A classic and slightly peculiar TV advert;
    Lastly, a piece of Blair-Witchesque cinematic genius as the sense of terror mounts in this video of a gentleman roaming the almost-deserted decks of the now-withdrawn Domiziana , before finally locking himself into his cabin, presumably to slit his wrists.
  • The Domiziana at Olbia, September 2010

    The Domiziana at Olbia, September 2010

    Things seen – November 2010

    The Anthi Marina, Milena and Dimitroula laid up in Piraeus outer harbour.

    The Anthi Marina, Milena and Dimitroula laid up in Piraeus outer harbour.

  • The laid up GA Ferries fleet in Piraeus has been put up for auction by the port authority. The following starting bids have been specified:

    DIMITROULA €1,277,000
    ANTHI MARINA €2,128,000
    ROMILDA €979,000
    MILENA €957,000
    MARINA €1,309,000
    RODANTHI €1,383,000
    DALIANA €957,500

    One wonders which shipboard delights make the Daliana €500 more valuable than her sister the Milena. Truthfully, I doubt many will miss most of these ships all of which were fairly grim clunkers at the very bottom of the market by the time GA Ferries finally gave up the ghost. The Dimitroula, whilst not an exception to that comment, was perhaps the most interesting, retaining many of her pocket Italian liner stylings through her Greek career. The fast craft Jetferry I, tucked up in the inner harbour adjacent to the berths of the smaller Blue Star ships, has already been repossessed by her secured creditors so is excluded from the list.

    There are some slightly haunting videos of the ships in the outer harbour, creaking and groaning at their berths here and here.

    The same set of videos also features a close up consideration of the Mediterranean Sky, once of Karageorgis Lines and before that Ellerman’s City of York but now a sunken, rusting hulk in a corner of Elefsis Bay.

    Meanwhile, near to the end of her operational days, life on board a Christmassy Romilda was captured by a nautilia user with the highly commendable name of ‘vortigern’.

  • The final departure of the Athens from Igoumenitsa en route for scrapping was captured for posterity – the vessel had served Ventouris Ferries for approaching a quarter of a century and had survived through all of the troubles of the family’s shipping operations – being right on the spot of disaster on occasion as pictures of her, freshly painted, alongside the sunken Grecia Express (ex-Norwind) prove.
  • Another former British ferry whose operational career in Greece was cut short at an early stage was the Theseus (ex-Dundalk, St Cybi). She did see service for a while however, as evidenced by this highly entertaining video of her berthing in rough weather at Kythira in 1993. Comedy highlights include the lost tyre bouncing around behind a disembarking vehicle and, somewhat cruelly, the lady who manages to drench herself as she attempts to embark by running up to and over the vehicle ramp.
  • ‘Mr Snail’ has a fine collection on flickr of images of and on board many of the lesser lights of the currently operational Greek domestic fleet, large and small.
  • The recent collision of the Superferry II (ex-Prince Laurent) with the pier in Tinos rang a bell and a quick search revealed a similar incident in Andros a couple of years ago – with rather more dramatic consequences for those on board.
  • The many and varied incidents which have affected BC Ferries’ fleet are documented in this remarkable youtube video which formed part of local TV coverage of the sinking of the Queen of the North.

    Meanwhile, this series of videos shows Tsawwassen terminal and the Queen of New Westminster being pounded by wet & wild weather in 2007.

  • Whilst Corsica Ferries seem somehow less accident-prone than rivals Moby, this image of the stern of the Mega Express shows that they still have their share of mishaps.
  • Continuing the theme of accidents and incidents, the former Ursula of Scandinavian Ferry Lines, latterly the Cozumel II, was washed ashore at Chinchorro Bank in Mexico during Hurricane Wilma in 2005. In May of this year she was finally released from her predicament as evidenced by this local television report.
  • Staying in Mexico, it is nearly three years since the Victory of Grandi Navi Veloci was sold to Baja Ferries where she operates as the Chihuahua Star alongside the California Star (ex-Stena Forwarder). She appears to have settled down quite well in operation, but, as can be seen from this voyage report, remains very much a GNV ship onboard.
  • Sessan Linjen was one of the more prestigious and upscale early car ferry operators and the company’s absorption by local rivals Stena Line in 1982 remains in many ways regrettable The vast majority of Sessan’s fleet were purpose-built and some interesting images are found here and here whilst a snatched recording of cars boarding the Prinsessan Desiree in Gothenburg in the early 1970s can be seen here. Today, Sessan’s Gothenburg terminal is the only remaining local link with the company, it now being home to Stena’s Kiel operation.
  • Mention of Stena and their early, rapid, growth prompts a quick link to one of my all time favourite ferry photographs, from the Dover Ferry Photos website, showing the little Stena Danica of 1965 in Dover alongside the Free Enterprise III and the Roi Baudouin. Stubby and small, she still manages to somehow outshine her equally modern rivals.
  • That Stena Danica image was taken during her brief charter to Townsend over the Winter of 1967/68 and just a couple of months later Pathé news ventured aboard the brand-new Dragon on her promotional visit to London to film this footage of one of the more attractive British-registered car ferries. The recording also resolves a minor query I had as to just what the Dragon featured in her main lobby, where her sister Leopard had a leopard clambering up the liftshaft (below). To the surprise of nobody it was a dragon (below x2), but still it is nice to see just what it looked like. As can also be seen both ships had Bayeux Tapestry extracts around the lobby’s upper circle.
    A leopard on the Leopard...

    A leopard on the Leopard...


    ...and a dragon on the Dragon.

    ...and a dragon on the Dragon.

  • The branch lines serving former railway ports still capture the imaginations of many and video tributes to those at Folkestone and Weymouth have found their way onto youtube. The Weymouth version includes some entertaining footage of cars being moved out of the way of the train as it passes along the quayside. Over at Folkestone, spread over three parts are some excellent clips of trains transiting the harbour line:
    Part One
    Part Two
    Part Three
  • The departure of the SNAV Sicilia (ex-Norland) for scrap is a reminder that this ship was once very famous indeed in her homeport of Kingston-upon-Hull. The Norland pub in Hessle remains a well-known local hostelry, whilst the name of Norland ARLFC continues to bring a wry smile to ferry enthusiast observers of the Hull & District League (this may indeed be a very limited number of people). Meanwhile a house on Norland Avenue doesn’t sound too bad a proposition, although that may depend on one’s view of the merits of living in Hull.

    The East Yorkshire version of the BBC’s Look North carried a decent segment on her demise (no longer available on iplayer but a related news item is here); the Hull Daily Mail predictably missed the story altogether.

  • It comes as a rude shock that some people don’t take ferry enthusiasm as seriously as this blog ceaselessly strives to. An entertaining critique of Brian Haresnape’s book Sealink, a revered tome in the eyes of this writer, can be found on the four pages of this link to an irreverent car forum – page 2 onwards are frankly not for the faint hearted.
  • Staying with Sealink and the ITN website has some interesting coverage of newsworthy events from the 1980s:
    ‘Save Our Senlac’
    On board the strikebound Earl Harold
    Refloating the Hengist
  • Lastly, the arrival of the Istra for scrapping in Aliaga didn’t go undocumented and below are some links to a series of images of and on board the old ship as she was prepared for cutting up (click on the thumbnails to go to the original urls):
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    (h/t Brodovi i pomorstvo)

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