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Everything posted by Cabin-boy

  1. Specific answer - no. Just stairs and a lift. Ed.
  2. Khaines will give you a quote. 😉 Ed.
  3. Really poor translation work. Click on the French language tab and it's 14+ million. If you do make a donation just make sure you use the French site, not the English site, or your bank balance might take 850 years to recover. Ed.
  4. I had my appointment at the Prefecture yesterday to sort out my residency card. It was fairly painless as I'd prepared a stack of documents a foot high just in case. They were in fact able to reactivate my previous (expired) card number and update the paperwork. They want to give me a 'permanent card', which is only really valid for 10 years, and it should be processed in the next couple of months. However, depending on what happens in the meantime, they might switch it to a different document or give me a temporary one which can then be exchanged once the Brexit issue is finalised. The (overpaid/underworked) woman tried to take the upper hand by arrogantly asking me if I knew the latest situation or would like to be lecturerd to. I asked her to tell me what she knew and she said that June 30th was a decisive date.???? It seems like she's been listening to Theresa (and/or Macron) - bad idea. I said that I thought 31st October was the new official deadline and Cabin-girl (who was there to prove my status) chirped up and confirmed that. The woman then shut up, stamped and signed the form and shooed us out. I'll have to make another appointment to pick up the card at some point unless they tell me in the meantime that they are changing the system. Fingers crossed! Ed.
  5. Paris is almost unique whereby all the members of the fireservice are from military engineering regiments. I had one in my class at the Angers engineering school last year who was unable to continue due to injuries sustained at work and was requalifying as a structural engineer. The only other place where that anomaly exists is in Marseille where the local naval fire service are also from the armed services. In the rest of France they are either full-time civilian fire-fighters or local volunteers. Ed
  6. Remember, this is France. They don't do change or reform. Ed.
  7. If you can't get out to see her arrive, why not just screw up your eyes and squint at any other Red Funnel ferry. It probably produces the same result. Plus it gives that realistic 'emerging from the fog' effect. Ed.
  8. Isn't that the exact polar opposite of what you were suggesting yesterday? Ed.
  9. It's interesting how people are willing to provide money for its rebuilding (perhaps with tax-relief or sponsorship rights - 'Welcome to Notre Dame, presented by L'Oreal - because she worth it!') but not for its initial restoration project. A couple of French people I've spoken to this morning are already starting to detect that Macron is spinning this his way, to detract from other events and to justify not reintroducing a wealth tax. This could spectacularly backfire on him. Ed.
  10. That's quite a saving. What is the annual fee to join the caravan club? Maybe that's where they are making their profit. Ed.
  11. And Twitter is awash with disgruntled passengers who have now found themselves somewhere they didn't want to be and facing a long drive home or bus ride back to Portsmouth. Plus those heading for Portsmouth who now need to find their way to Plymouth. There is also one woman (with a heart condition) who appears to be the carer for a severely handicapped child and who is extremely angry at it all. I assume she has to travel by ferry as the airlines refuse to carry potentially disruptive passengers but from the description she provides on Twitter it can't have been much fun for the other PA passengers either. I get the impression reading the mother's tweets that in a real emergency on board her daughter could present a danger to all those on board. I wonder what BF's policy is on accepting people with behavioural problems. https://twitter.com/BrittanyFerries/status/1117766606355140610?s=20 And: https://twitter.com/BrittanyFerries/status/1118076478917365760?s=20 Ed
  12. Agreed. The preservation of what remains needs to be the priority and various options for the future use of the building will need to be considered before any public or private money is spent, aside from the initial clean-up and stabilisation of the shell. Ed.
  13. This is the answer from Wikipedia : 'Under a 1905 law, Notre-Dame de Paris is one of 70 churches in Paris built before that year which are owned by the French state. While the building itself is owned by the state, the Catholic Church is the designated beneficiary, having the exclusive right to use it for religious purposes in perpetuity. The archdiocese is responsible for paying the employees, for security, heating and cleaning, and for ensuring that the cathedral is open free to visitors. The archdiocese does not receive subsidies from the French state.' Ed
  14. Very sad. And it spread so quickly. These buildings always seem so much more at risk during phases of renovation. Ed.
  15. President Macron's speech this evening might be in doubt now as a major fire has sadly broken out in the roof of Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. I can't see the two major networks going straight to the Elysee at 8pm when most of the population are more interested in the breaking news. And if they do cut to the president then the audience figures will be pretty low. I guess the speech is pre-recorded about an hour prior to broadcast to allow for cuts so they can run it later if necessary. Unfortunately, going up in flames may be an appropriate metaphor for Macron's presidency. Ed.
  16. Good question! I can't say I'm massively worried about the immediate risk of events spiralling out of control. I'm more concerned that he doesn't give too much away to the protesters as they can't be seen to win. If he's just setting up any successor for even worse protests when they try to repair the damage he's done then that's the bigger worry. Once people get a taste for paying less tax and giving nothing back then that's going to be very hard to overturn. I'd be surprised if any of the measures take effect before the EU elections as that will be his way of blackmailing the population into voting for his party. We'll just have to wait and see. Ed.
  17. She seems to be underway now after a delay of almost 12 hours. There are some suggestions on Twitter that the passengers were told the problem was due to engine failure. Ed.
  18. It looks as if, in addition to a problem with Barfleur this evening, there is also something wrong with tonight's sailing from Santander to Portsmouth. https://twitter.com/BrittanyFerries/status/1117522969167896576?s=20 Ed
  19. Yesterday's protest in Paris passed off relatively quietly but there were some serious clashes in Toulouse. President Macron is due to make a televised address tomorrow at 8pm French time to draw conclusions following his 'grand national debate' and set out his plans to reform France. Ed
  20. Apparently there are technical problems (not specified) and due to those and the weather they have cancelled tomorrow's sailing too. Here's just one example of a number of questions about tonight's problems on Twitter. https://twitter.com/BrittanyFerries/status/1117500191823802369?s=20 Ed
  21. Thanks for the additional info Chris. Looking at the video, it is indeed scary as you say. Luckily that type of failure is very rare, and lessons have been learned, although such drive-through designs do still seem to be the most popular. If all ferries were stern-door only, requiring trucks and cars to turn around inside either on loading or unloading (depending on the initial loading position) how wide would ferries have to be to allow this? What is the required turning circle for standard HGVs so that reversing on is not necessary and doesn't prolong turnaround times? A second observation from watching the video is how useless lifeboats are in such situations, unless launched immediately, but which goes against the current idea that you are safer staying on board rather than evacuating the vessel. Once the ship is listing at anything over 20° to port or starboard it would seem very difficult to get the boats loaded and away. Why are we not seeing some sort of evacuation pods being used instead or a rail-launched lifeboat system as found on tankers and oil rigs? Is it for esthetic reasons, because the risk is so low or cost? I guess the impact with the sea tends to result in more injuries (broken bones and neck/back issues) but as long as they are survivable surely that's the key. Ed.
  22. I assume the reason she is under tow, rather than using her own propulsion, is the same as when the old IOW ships get sent to the Mediterranean. Namely that there is no crew accommodation on board. Ed.
  23. So, rather than letting them all go off on a nice two-week Easter break, why haven't we confiscated their phones and locked the entire useless bunch in the house of commons with a 24-hour supply of baked beans, prunes and water and one chemical toilet. That should focus their attention on finding a workable solution. Ed
  24. It looks like BF are reducing their prices on some sailings to try to boost bookings but are not, as yet, publishing any special offers other than those already available. https://twitter.com/BrittanyFerries/status/1116732306180452352?s=20 Ed
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