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  2. Poole Harbour Developmement

    If it is just for Barfleur that would be typical of Poole! This ferry is the only one they are ever going to handle evidently. What happens if BF decide to replace this ship with something else?
  3. The Great Belt bridge is two differing designs, one is about 5kms the other 1.500kms. The adjacent rail line uses both a tunnel and a bridge. Ed is right, the toll fee is eye watering, we paid over €50 for the Storebaelt and €90 for the Oresund... that's one way in a motorhome and I believe the prices have gone up since.
  4. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    With 2225 lane metres and the capacity to carry another 195 cars, I'm sure BF won't have a problem with loading. There is fair bit of info and the odd video of Norman Asturias on http://www.shipfriends.gr/forum/ A site spookily similar to our own bfenthusiasts.com... maybe we could have a forum member exchange scheme, for purely cultural reasons, of course.
  5. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    The scenario you set out regarding freight being left behind is part of why BF have an uphill struggle, at least initially. At Dublin and Rosslare there are other easy alternatives. At Cork there isn’t without waiting for days (not possible with perishable goods), or driving to one of the other ports. That’s before we consider that the driver may have been getting his rest break onboard the ferry, so may need to take it before driving to Rosslare or Dublin! Hauliers like any business don’t like uncertainty. Another thing to remember as well is the likes of Nolan can have 2 loads on one trailer, one may well be for England or France and another for Spain. It could even be a case of part of a load for Spain coming from Ireland and the rest from England or elsewhere. You can’t assume an Irish trailer on a ferry from England has a load originating in Ireland even if it mostly will. Another factor is the importance of “hubs”, particularly to unaccompanied traffic. This is something we have seen here in Northern Ireland with P&O carrying a larger proportion of accompanied traffic than before now they no longer have the hub effect after closing or selling all their routes apart from Larne - Cairnryan. Stena on the other hand have a hub effect going on at Belfast, so much so they had to add a dedicated freighter to Birkenhead to feee up space for accompanied traffic! I know I sound very negative but honestly I’m not, I’m just pointing out some of the realites. Taking an economical vessel on a charter with a European crew is the sensible approach on what is a totally new proposition. It wouldn’t be the first time BF have launched a service with European crew before switching to a French crew, as someone else pointed out above.
  6. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    My guess is that there is probably support from both ports involved (in the form of port charges) which is normal in these scenarios but I would be surprised if there was any other support due to EU tendering type rules. Not to say they won't look at options for EU or other funding.
  7. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    @RickOShea it’s also unclear how or who is helping fund the charter, is it BF funded or are other committees for want of a better word involved.
  8. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    I'm not being pedantic or picky here - but do you grasp how significant a 2 year commitment like this is?? I am unclear whether the ship is being bareboat or time-chartered but if we say a daily ship and crew cost of 17,000 Euro before any other costs that's a commitment of about 12.5 million Euro. That's a massive commitment to a new market.
  9. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    @RickOShea I ment it wasn’t a massive commitment as it’s a chartered ship crewed by a non French crew who won’t have the same employment rights as a French crew so you are of course correct it’s a 2 year commitment nothing else at present, I’m sure the ferry itself will be fine my parents had no issue sailing on Etretat as they knew what to except, I’m sure this will be a success BF and JMR are too savvy to throw money away.
  10. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    Anybody can apply for a livestock license and they are ship related rather than operator related as such. I think the biggest issue is that the Cork - Santander route is too long to be granted a license. The ship being used should easily get a license given a range of other Visentinis have received licenses. It would probably be worth BF looking at a license for the Cork - Roscoff sailing of the ship though - it's a very lucrative business.
  11. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    I'm not sure I can agree. A more basic ship certainly isn't for everyone but not all passengers are overly hung-up on a la carte restaurants, entertainment and luxury cabins. I am guessing it's not your thing and we all have our own tastes so that's your right for it not to be your liking. It's about setting expectations correctly and BF have shown total professionalism to date with the Economie brand almost to the extent of under-selling what's offered! I certainly don't see many negative comments online. There are also very few complaints despite full sailings for the Epsilon and Stena Horizon as the mainly Irish passengers are just happy at having direct routes (it's actually the Oscar Wilde that gets most negative comments of any Ireland - France ferry but I would put that mostly down to fact she carries most passengers). LD carried around 12,000 passengers on Rosslare - Saint Nazaire during summer 2014 and received zero complaints about the ship used. Onboard pricing was sensible, decent if simple food, the service was punctual, friendly crew, ship clean, comfortable cabins etc. I think provided BF get the basic onboard service right on the Connemara (and I have no doubt that they will) along with the marketing message and sales information I would be surprised if the route wasn't sold out of passenger space in summer time with very few complaints. The type of market that books a ferry to Northern Spain tends to largely be well educated travel wise and whilst some will decide a fairly basic ferry on a long sailing time isn't for them, many others will simply welcome a very attractive direct route. BF have also given this a 2-year commitment which I think is quite a significant commitment to what is currently a largely untested market so I don't understand why there is a reference to this not being a massive commitment. I would add that any investment in the ferry industry should be welcomed. I really admire how BF are diversifying in recognition that the their traditional market is one that is declining.
  12. More competition for BF - but not for a while

    No, the Oresund crossing starts on the Danish side near Copenhagen airport and enters a tunnel which takes it under a nature reserve to an artificially created island off-shore. Then the combined road and rail tunnel rises to the surface and vehicles climb (with the roadway above the railway) over a tall bridge before descending to the Swedish coast at which point the road and rail split with the trains going directly to the centre of Malmo. Centre to centre by train takes, from memory, no more than half an hour. The road tolls are however very expensive, and comparable with the now defunct high-speed ferry service which used to operate on the crossing. Ed
  13. More competition for BF - but not for a while

    I thought the Oresund Bridge was a bridge all the way across for both road and rail. It's the Great Belt Bridge which is a "brunnel" -- but for the railway only. The road combines a low level trestle bridge with a major suspension bridge.
  14. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    Thanks for the mansplanning I can assure you it wasn’t necessary at all. My point was it’s not really a great tourist draw or a massive commitment, I suppose it’s a step up from another Pelican.
  15. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    There are two livestock licences for transportation from Eire, P&O have one and Stena hold the other since their purchase of Celtic Link. Spain don't import livestock from Ireland. If you look at the link which Ed has posted above, to the right there is a breakdown of all of the animal products including fish etc which Spain buys from them, around 4.5% of their total Irish imports worth around €155m.
  16. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    This is because BF is a BUSINESS and always has been. I don't know what else it could possibly be.
  17. My cynical mind asks what is he trying to distract us from?
  18. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    What about other live animals to be eaten -- once slaughtered, of course! I thought this was the mainstay of Celtic Link Ferries trade between Rosslare and Cherbourg. And their insistence on trying to convey such cargo between Cherbourg and Portsmouth against the objections of the latter caused the failure of CLF's cross-channel service. Amongst their objections Ports didn't want to provoke a permanent demonstration by animal rights activists outside the ferry terminal as happened at Dover! But it seems that CLF believed they would be unable to operate the service profitably without this trade. I don't know what BF's position generally is on the conveyance of live animals for slaughter, I.e. cattle, sheep, pigs. But it has been indicated in these Forums previously that agricultural exports are a very important part of the Irish economy. Maybe BF have not had to consider this before if Cork-Roscoff is essentially a high season tourist route.
  19. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    Totally agree, hopefully it becomes a success and they introduce better tonnage.
  20. More competition for BF - but not for a while

    Given Boris' record on bridges, I don't think this is overly serious.
  21. BF Refits 2017-18

    Just discovered this Astander video which shows some of the BF ships undergoing refit at the yard, including the scrubber installation process.
  22. The super structure is being built at another yard. it must be quiet well fitted out for the boat to be delivered in may.
  23. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    Don't rule out the shellfish , I got a look inside a truck on board the Pont while awaiting to disembark at Roscoff from Cork , live shellfish , lobster and crab all in large tanks with a complex circulation system and three backup generators . The driver told me that by 4 pm that day (Sun ) the truck will be empty after a few deliveries around Brittany and he heads back to Castletownbere via Cherbourg / Rosslare and do it again the following weekend .
  24. Cork to Santander route set to launch

    Thanks Jonno. By clicking on the link to Spain specifically, I got this visual chart listing the exports: https://atlas.media.mit.edu/en/visualize/tree_map/hs92/import/esp/irl/show/2016/ A very wide variety of good in specific categories. Ed
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