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BRETAGNE: 30th Anniversary

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echo all the sentiments here, such a shame to see her being so neglected, and, for what we know, largely cosmetic reasons, excepting the scrubber issue of course.

 

must say i'm very surprised at BF letting her go like this, as said good business should come first, but i can't help thinking they're missing a trick in letting the fleet's 'grand old lady' go to the dogs... whenever she sails from plymouth i try to plan a voyage, whether i need to or not!

Edited by dojidave

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I see the latest picture of Brittany ferries on Trip advisor is of a blocked toilet not on Bretagne though on MSM so maybe there is a wider problem.

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Having sailed on Bretagne a few times in the recent past, I must say that the windows have usually been a little "misty" and the bow bell unpolished. What is not forgivable is the unmended toilet and light fittings.

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I find this attitude of management rather arrogant. In that if they feel that the amount of invested time and money on a vessel that is admittedly due for retirement in a relatively short time frame (2years?) that there is no commercial need to upkeep the public areas of a ship. As had been said the cost of a light bulb or bit of carpet her and there and for a public convenience to be fixed. They are still charging the full blown Brittany Ferry fare to travel on this vessel and as a customer I expect the normal standard of service and environment as all the ships in the company. I am hoping to go on her next month, if my experience is that of what I being described I must admit my desire to take the 'quality' route to France will diminish rather quickly. One of the reasons I prefer to travel with BF is because of their smart tidy ships that regardless of age, keep them pristine. Well that was always my experience of the Bretagne previously. Although I must say they not seemed to be keeping up their Commodore Cabins up to scratch for a while (lights missing/hanging out).

 

Seems a very short sighted management style if this is their intention. Effectively they are sticking an arm up at their St Malo /Portsmouth customers and saying, in my eyes at least, take it or leave it. Well ya know what BF, I may well just leave it. And not just the route but your company completely. Why spend good money on a company who would appear to not give a jot about it's customers well being (knackered toilets) or comfort and enjoyment of their surroundings whilst on board.

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Perhalps as the ship was hastily put back in service everything was not fixed in time ?

 

Quite impressive this forum, where people can go from enthusiasm to deep company and personnel bashing in just a few posts ...

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Let's hope BF will give her more attention. Not for just the ship itself but mostly to ensure that the customers will enjoy thoroughly their crossings on the blue ribband line and justify the extra money paid for it. BF should have plenty of time to sort it out when Bretagne is staying in St-Malo every Tuesday in April.

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With all this time Bretagne has had off having been to dry dock in Gdansk and having been laid up for some time there is just no excuse BF !!!!!

 

the only excuse is just poor maintenance and lack of caring !!! Bretagne is a modern looking vessel and has never shown her age, plus she is not old for a vessel !!! Don't know where this comes from !!! Shame on you Bf for not looking after the classy lady Bretagne.

 

You need to sort it out ASAP Bf !!!!! Good loyal customers will not except this and will not come back !!! Plus Bf you owe Bretagne sooo much so stop letting her down too she deserves sooo much more !!!!!

 

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With all this time Bretagne has had off having been to dry dock in Gdansk and having been laid up for some time there is just no excuse BF !!!!!

 

the only excuse is just poor maintenance and lack of caring !!! Bretagne is a modern looking vessel and has never shown her age, plus she is not old for a vessel !!! Don't know where this comes from !!! Shame on you Bf for not looking after the classy lady Bretagne.

 

You need to sort it out ASAP Bf !!!!! Good loyal customers will not except this and will not come back !!! Plus Bf you owe Bretagne sooo much so stop letting her down too she deserves sooo much more !!!!!

 

Let's not be too dramatic. It's mostly dirt, clogged toilets and few broken fittings... BF are still looking after her machines. She is still in a reasonable mechanical condition.

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Still no excuse for letting Bretagne get in that state !!! No excuse at all !!

 

its always about presentation, mechanically she should always be it tip top condition without a doubt.

if you let presentation go it makes people think what the vessel is like behind the scenes !! Presentation is what always gives the impression!

 

so come on Bf look after that magnificent mighty vessel Bretagne and make her shine and rise above the others as she always has done.

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I will try to give you an update when I see those who have come off tomorrow for a week. In Gdansk BF spent pretty serious money of mechanical maintenance. I do not think this has anything to do with rushed bringing back into service, as I do not think anything other than the usual cleaners was planned. She was built in 1989, and has had some substantial refits since, but there are still lots of original elements, and, bit by bit, they fail, get grubby etc. Internally a serious deep clean, and close inspection would show up what needs done, and the cost would not be great.

 

She simply is a bit in limbo for the moment.

 

Have a look at the SNCM ships built around the same time. Wow!!! Bretagne stands head and shoulders above and can gleam for years to come.

 

Scrubbers and stability are mental blocks at Roscoff HQ about her.

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When Bretagne was launched back in 1989 her design was soo ahead of her time, she has a design which for even today she still looks modern, sleek, classy and compared to alot of vessels and newer vessels in the Bf fleet she stands out looking so smart and setting the bench mark for such a gorgeous looking cruise ferry. Her design never ages its as if she has been stuck in a time warp for almost the last 26 years !!

 

really would love to know the real depths of her issues with scrubbers and stability !!! The ship yard i work in which is on the Clyde in scotland We have fitted so many different types of scrubbers to vessels not all suit each vessel so the design has to change for the scrubbers but any vessel is capable to have them fitted it just seems to me that Bf dont want to invest in the beautiful lady !!!! Bring the mighty Bretagne up here we will soon have them fitted in about a month and a half !!

 

stop making excuses Bf about the issues with scrubbers with Bretagne its rubbish !! Lack of investment to me !!!! Anything is possible !! Bring her to a proper ship yard on the Clyde !!

 

soo would love to prove Bf wrong with this. If only we could get hold of her schematics and plans of Bretagne !!!

Edited by ross brown

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I would think its the total cost of fitting the scrubbers not that they can't be lost cabins, or lane space cheaper to buy or charter a "bankruptcy" or the like ship, no emotions involved.

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I think there is a little more to it than just to reconfigure her V engines for emission control. if you look at her dimensions, she is small for her capacity and suffers from loading delays due to her tight car decks.

 

Compare her to MSM, a ship with similar pax capacity but 11000 tonnes heavier, 20m longer and a capacity for 250 more vehicles, the latter point being the most important... Vehicles and rotation time equal money and that is the bottom line.

 

BF have made decisions like this before. Why spend £80m on Armorique? BF could have kept the Val for the Roscoff - Plymouth route. Why be so hasty with Cotentin? she would now be ideal for the new route to Le Havre...

 

Look how shabbily Barfleur has been treated in recent years...

 

I think BF have kept Bretagne in service far longer than they originally wished, possibly due to the fact that they do hold her in high regard, regardless of what some think. Over time she has more than made a return on the £55m invested in her.

 

I say let her go. Let her plough on quietly somewhere into her old age being looked after by a shipping company who truly rely on her and maybe give her bell a polish...

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I travelled back from St Malo on Saturday night onboard Bretagne. After reading some of the comments above I was a little concerned as to what it would be like onboard - but once onboard I was quickly put at ease - she was the same old Bretagne we all know and love.

 

Having not opted for early boarding, at the time we checked in there were no other cars to be seen, and it was straight through from the check-in booth and onto the ship. Sadly our late arrival didn't mean avoiding deck 5, being the last car to be sent up there! Still, less stairs to climb! I'm sure it's been mentioned before, but since BF have taken P&O's example of colour coding the car deck doors, it's much simpler to find your car. At the moment these colours only apply to the doors - onboard signage still just has the number/letter combination, perhaps this will be implemented in the future? The car decks were as clean and bright as always.

 

It was then staight up to the cabin, a club located on deck 8. It was clean, tidy and everything functioning. Bunks chosen, it was time to go down to the Yacht Club for an apperetife before dinner. It's great to see that the lighthouse is up and running again (the light behind the bar) I can't remember when I last saw it turned on. I can't remember the name of the pianist, but she was fantastic, and carried on playing for much of the meal that followed in Les Abers. The buffet was enjoyed a little too much (it's all so tempting!) - and was of a higher standard/larger selection to that available onboard the Pont-Aven last month. I do agree that the windows need a thorough external cleaning - and have done for a couple of years now!

 

The ship had started to move around quite a bit by the time we'd finished dinner, but none the less a lap of the outside deck was needed after dinner. It was surprisingly mild outside, but my the wind was strong. I slept straight through to the alarm call in the morning, (the new pillows are a big plus!) although I was told it got quite bumpy in the night! Our arrival into Portsmouth was slightly delayed due to the poor weather conditions delaying an outbound Banana boat, but this allowed a more relaxed waking up - and we got to see the cruise ship Voyager following us up the harbour.

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Without upsetting some ***ducks*** by bringing Barfleur into this, but I remember a large splodge of bird poo on one of her windows and it was still there months later, wondered how often the windows do get cleaned on the outside on all the vessels. I thought bird muck would get washed off by any rain anyway, but it appears to be quite resistant!!

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Thanks Andy, so all is well then. Let the Johnston bookings begin! I agree, the large colour coded vehicle deck doors make a huge difference particularly for less frequent travellers. I've noticed a fair bit of confusion around her deck six staircases too.

 

 

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I was on Bretagne yesterday, sailing from St-Malo to Ports. Same as Andy said, the ship is quite clean. I had a commodore cabin which was in good condition. The bow deck as been re-painted and the bell as been polished too. I would assume that they are in the process of re-painting the other outside decks. So let's hope the previous reports were caused by the hasty restart of her season. Food in Les Abers was of the expected good standard as well.

 

The old berth in Saint-Malo took a battering over the weekend and capsized. The port authorities will have to do some juggling to accomodate BF and Condor with one berth!

 

I said it before but I would encourage all BF fans to have a crossing on Bretagne before she goes for good. This is maybe "the" BF real Mc Coy.

Edited by crechbleiz

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Well I am chuffed to hear these last two reports. As a 'leisure' traveller I only travel BF when it suits and takes my fancy. To be honest Bretagne has often had several lights not working in cabins or bars which has always griped me a bit. And yes the windows last time I travelled were filthy, I assumed it was a temporary thing the windows (rough crossings and relentless spray). But if all is as normal as has been said, I can expect friendly happy staff with clean decks and public areas at least. It always seems to me, that when on the old girl she is having a carpet washed and shampooed somewhere on Deck 6 through to 8. Never see it on the other ships and it always gives a bright fresh feel to the companionway/area.

 

She is BF in their defining years? And I like the sound and rumble of her engines - it makes you feel part of the ship. Serenity is not always part of the experience for me. I like to know I am at one with a piece of engineering and sleep better for it. But them I am not the usual who wants everything for nothing...!

 

 

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My partner and I sailed on the Bretagne last Friday from Portsmouth to St Malo. To be honest, while it was good to be on a classic BF ship, the standards did appear to have slipped.

 

When we boarded we headed straight for our cabin. Number 1201 (I think) all the way down on deck 1. When I stuck the card in and opened the door to my shock there was someone's stuff in there and the beds were un-made! On top of that when I tried to close the door again the lock was stuck so I couldn't close the door! We headed straight up to the reception and told the lady that someone else appeared to already be in our cabin! I also mentioned I couldn't get the door to shut. The lady apologised saying "there has been a mistake" and gave us two plastic door cards for cabin 1202 (I think) next door. Luckily this cabin was empty. However on inspection of the beds there were big clumps of dirt and hair between the mattress and the sides of the beds. Absolutely shocking.

 

I also feel for the people who were in 1201. We later heard an announcement over the speaker system for the people in cabin 1201 to report to the reception. I'd be pretty annoyed to hear BF had given away keys to my cabin to a stranger and the door was left open!

 

It's certainly true that the windows need a good clean. You can't see a thing out the windows in the self service restaurant.

 

Anyway that's enough moaning. The restaurant had some great food and wine and the magician show in the bar was surprisingly good. Although that could have been because of the beer and wine consumed.

 

I recognised one of the barmen from the Barfleur working behind the bar. Nice to know BF still have work for him while the Barfleur is out of action.

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Hi. Currently on the Bretagne. Have never travelled on her before so can't compare in that respect. But will say everything seems clean and we'll organised. Our cabin is fine and the restaurant and food exceptional. Very impressed with the customer service on board, including giving me a quick tour of the bridge. Am looking forward to being on the bow deck when we come into Portsmouth.

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Sounds like the crew on Bretagne are cleaning her up lovely as usual. Don't know why they removed her cleaning pressure washer machines on each side of her to clean the windows !! Maybe issues with it but surely its best to just get them repaired !! Now they have the issues with the dirty windows !! Seems crazy !!

Surely her windows could have been cleaned during her layover period !!

 

well least she is getting back to the beautiful classy lady as we all know her as, Thanks to the crew not Bf !

 

Cant wait to sail on her tomorrow night and get in the les Abes Restaurant ! Plus get on her massive bow while departing Portsmouth.

 

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The crew and the cleaners are doing what they can, and they have worked on some of the areas noted on this forum. Sadly we cannot change the "past sell buy date" mentality which has been creeping in from HQ, and the unwillingness to do more than normal, routine work. Fair enough, deep cleaning hundreds of toilets is quite a job, but there is absolutely no harm in us customers politely pointing out defects and disappointments. Except when they got out of bed the wrong side, senior staff on board are pleased to hear what we think, and do pass up the line the more serious reports.

 

Jacques Brichet should be on board till Tuesday, so go bend his ear (nicely).

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It certainly doesn't endear me to make a booking on her, so she's basically out the door to the highest bidder Colin as soon as BF get another ship?

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