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Hawser Trunnion

PHC Open Evening

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This is happening two months later than usual at the end of January next year.  The guest speaker is BF's UK MD.  Go to www.phc.co.uk for further details.  However it may be intended for relatively local people with an interest in Poole Harbour rather than ferry enthusiasts from further afield.

 

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2 hours ago, Gareth said:

HT you’re not suggesting that enthusiasts from further afield are unlikely to have an interest in Poole Harbour are you?(!) 😉

Read a large number of posts over past years and draw your own conclusions.:) 

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Maybe I was being a bit too cryptic.  

The meeting is dominated by yotties and boaters and sometimes would appear to be an occasion for the officers of PHC to explain their commercial policy to them.  Indeed they may well succeed here as the leisure users of the Harbour seem to be well aware that the excellent facilities they enjoy are paid for by the earnings of the commercial docks.

However interest in the ferries from the floor is noticeably lacking and not many questions on this topic get asked at "question time".  

Further the PHC website does indicate that space in the hall (which is the ferry passenger terminal) is not unlimited and perhaps PHC would prefer attendees in the main to be people with a direct involvement in Harbour activities such as yachting and boating rather than just ferry enthusiasts or ship enthusiasts generally.

Presumably next Jan PHC will be reporting on the continuing success of MN Pelican and what the prospects are for South Quay.  I have heard they haven't got the number of cruiseship calls they were hoping for.  Obviously if an enthusiast goes he/she can inquire about it.  But I would repeat in general it would seem such matters are not the primary interest of most of the attendees.  Personally I wish there was more interest and those attending might learn something about how BF see the future for Poole-Cherbourg, especially next time when the guest speaker is scheduled to be BF's UK MD.

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Meanwhile Poole Bridge is STILL a case of ongoing works, shall be so glad when it opens, been one heck of a major inconvenience.  I like to book my trips at the port rather than phone, I personally prefer it that way.  Miss the old saunter round.

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I thought the work on this bridge wasn't due to be completed until the end of this year.  Maybe its non-availability is a reason this meeting has been put back from Nov to Jan but there is the Twin Sails Bridge but I agree not so convenient if you're on foot.

10 hours ago, Khaines said:

Meanwhile Poole Bridge is STILL a case of ongoing works, shall be so glad when it opens, been one heck of a major inconvenience.  I like to book my trips at the port rather than phone, I personally prefer it that way.  Miss the old saunter round.

 

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I quite enjpy my walks round to the port,  the Twin Sails isn’t good on foot and especially at this time of year when it is dark.  Taxis are around £5-7 and because you have to go both ways that is around the £15, basically a tenner short of the ferry fare to make a booking.  I don’t like online booking anything, and I am always forgetting to ring up amd book a trip, but when I go to Poole with a purpose of going round to book a crossing, it has some kind of added pleasure and excitement to it, which picking up the phone doesn’t.  I look forward to popping round and booking.  Just never get round to phoning!  It is really annoying because after several years of being very short of money and having health problems, those things are a lot better now so it is just that blessed bridge!!!😄

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I quite appreciate getting to Poole ferry terminal on foot via Twin Sails won't be the easiest walk.  And I don't believe the terminal is served by a bus service these days or by one that goes anywhere near it.  I suppose this is some indication of the reduced nature of ferry services to France at the present time.  I don't know how far it is from Poole railway station to the ferry terminal via Town Bridge.  About the same as from Portsmouth railway station to the PIP at a guess so both could be walked but I doubt if many , if anyone, does the Poole walk these days -- unlike the equivalent walk at Portsmouth.  But the latter does have the advantages of going through the main shopping centre to a ferry terminal with more frequent services.  Fortunately car parking at Poole ferry terminal is very good -- and usually extra parking close to the venue is laid on for the Open Meeting.

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With regards to Poole Railway Station to the port on foot via the bridge, it is about 20 minutes, or 25 for me as I get to Poole on a bus, and the station is a walk through the shopping centre.  I have it down to a good little routine for my trips.  I get a bus to Poole at round 05.45, (and that in itself is nicer in spring/summer when it is light at that time), get to Poole about 06.10, then have a coffee till around 06.40, then walk to the port, usually getting there around 07.10.  Stopping of course at a paper shop to en route.  Nice stroll that early, can sit i; the port with another coffee and read the paper while waiting for boarding.  If I was walking via the Twin Sails, I guess I would have to add around half and hour or forty minutes to an already very early start.  And as we dock at night, then it is a forty minute or so walk back, then get a bus back.  Under normal circumstsnces I can walk back to the bus station  from the port and get home usually around 11.30.

The Twin Sails route is just so inconvenient and is always the offputting thought at the moment when I want to get round to booking.  When I go the normal way, it always amuses me when I get on the early bus in Bournemouth and ask for a return to Poole, when I am going to France..😄

 

 

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2 hours ago, Khaines said:

With regards to Poole Railway Station to the port on foot via the bridge, it is about 20 minutes, or 25 for me as I get to Poole on a bus, and the station is a walk through the shopping centre.  I have it down to a good little routine for my trips.  I get a bus to Poole at round 05.45, (and that in itself is nicer in spring/summer when it is light at that time), get to Poole about 06.10, then have a coffee till around 06.40, then walk to the port, usually getting there around 07.10.  Stopping of course at a paper shop to en route.  Nice stroll that early, can sit i; the port with another coffee and read the paper while waiting for boarding.  If I was walking via the Twin Sails, I guess I would have to add around half and hour or forty minutes to an already very early start.  And as we dock at night, then it is a forty minute or so walk back, then get a bus back.  Under normal circumstances I can walk back to the bus station  from the port and get home usually around 11.30.

The Twin Sails route is just so inconvenient and is always the off putting though at the moment when I want to get round to booking.  When I go the normal way, it always amuses me when I get on the early bus in Bournemouth and ask for a return to Poole, when I am going to France..😄

 

 

Why do you not use the 152 from Poole bus station? The route has been revised for the duration of the bridge works to solve the problem.

Edited by G4rth

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I imagine this bridge work is all in a good cause.  I believe they are widening the approaches on each side but the leaves or bascules will remain the same.  (For them as don't know this bridge is a lifting bridge -- as is Twin  Sails -- both like London"s Tower Bridge.).  Leaving aside the contentious issue of the decline of the Channel ferries to France I would guess these bridges are essential to the efficient functioning of the Port of Poole, especially as MN Pelican seems to be averaging between sixty and seventy trailers per trip at the moment.  All these topics are usually dealt with by the CEO in his overview of the year at the Open Meeting.  Doubtless any ferry enthusiast attending, especially one who follows these Forums, will be hoping to get some idea of what the future holds.  Of course the critical year will be 2019 with the departure of BdS, the delivery of Honfleur, the end of the Pelican's current charter and what concomitant movement round of ships this will bring.  Of course members may have their own ideas but there is always the hope one might get something from the horse's mouth!

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I feel like a gate-crasher in a Poole Party now!  But just want to ask HT for clarification.  What have the departure of BDS (which has nothing to do with Poole) and the arrival of Honfleur (which has nothing to do with Poole) got to do with affairs at Poole?  Apologies if I'm being thick, just don't see the connection.... 😳

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3 hours ago, Gareth said:

I feel like a gate-crasher in a Poole Party now!  But just want to ask HT for clarification.  What have the departure of BDS (which has nothing to do with Poole) and the arrival of Honfleur (which has nothing to do with Poole) got to do with affairs at Poole?  Apologies if I'm being thick, just don't see the connection.... 😳

I did say concomitant movement round of ships.  After all I thought BF was a ferry fleet and a unified operation not a collection of totally separate enterprises.

I have no idea why this Open Meeting has been put back to the end of January and whether the change is temporary or permanent.  Customarily it has been held towards the end of November.  If the change is permanent the next meeting after Jan next year will presumably be Jan 2019.  Maybe what I'm mentioning now will be a bit more relevant at that date, if that's when they hold it, but I don't suppose one of the guest speakers will be BF's UK MD.

I think it's worth mentioning again the interview BF's CEO, M. Christophe Matthieu, gave to "ShippaxInfo's" Philippe Holtof in the Oct 2017 issue of the magazine.  A lot of topics were raised.  In particular M. Holtof asked about the single-ship Poole-Cherbourg route which he described as an on and off story, pointing out that at one stage the ferry involved was even laid up and chartered out.  He asked M. Mathieu how the route was faring at the present time.  M. Mathieu didn't give a precise answer but did say they have adjusted their capacity on the Channel and are now in a much stronger position than they were ten years ago.  He said they had to make drastic decisions to better adapt supply to demand and withdrawal of Barfleur was part of that.  He also said that if the British Pound keeps on plummeting versus the Euro, BF might have to take such radical decisions again and here he was referring also to the tying up of the entire fleet in early October 2012.

Thus I would venture to suggest there is no room for complacency re their ferry to France at Poole.  Unfortunately, as I have indicated, most who attend this Open Meeting seem to be more interested in yachting and boating issues than the cross-Channel ferry and don't raise ferry issues.  This could be unfortunate as PHC do like to see themselves working in close partnership with BF but I fear BF may have s different agenda.

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6 hours ago, Hawser Trunnion said:

I did say concomitant movement round of ships.  After all I thought BF was a ferry fleet and a unified operation not a collection of totally separate enterprises.

Well, obviously.  But we already know most of the reshuffle plans, don't we?  BDS will be replaced by the Stena E-Flexer, with no wider ramifications.  Honfleur will replace Normandie at Caen which will, in turn, replace Etretat at Le Havre.  (Ultimately - I know there is a window of a couple of years after Honfleur arrives when BDS will need a temporary replacement after her departure).

So I suppose the aspect of all this that is a current unknown is what BF's plans are for Etretat.  I think most of us are assuming that she will be gone as soon as are finished her, but that assumption may have no basis in fact.  So is your thinking that the possibility exists for Etretat to replace Pelican at Poole?  Might well be a possibility, if BF sees a market for a limited Economie passenger service from Poole to Santander that can be catered for alongside the freight operation.  I guess they might be able to get an extra weekly rotation out of Etretat as well, compared with Pelican.

Apart from that I'm not sure I can see a use for Etretat in the fleet once the E-Flexer is here.  I consider it far more likely that BF will take the opportunity to ditch the Economie brand.

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Ok, tin hat firmly in place and the chin strap tightened...

Is BF's UK MD attending as he's the bearer of a bit of bad news which is the reason why the open evening has been put back until after the Christmas period? 

I wonder whether they are shutting down Poole-Cherbourg in early 2019 until the summer with Barfleur relocating to Le Havre awaiting Normandie whilst Etretat covers for BDS awaiting the E-Flexer. Cherbourg would be covered by NEX beginning her season a month earlier.

I tend to agree with Gareth's outlook that Etretat will be returning to Stena and Economie is ditched rather than have her replace Pelican at Poole for the growing Spanish market.

If BDS was retained I'd possibly think differently in terms of both Economie & Pelican but for me the Visentini is unsuitable for longer sea crossings and is possibly the reason why we saw the DFDS charter in the first place with Etretat confined to Le Havre.

The new quay opens up further possibilities in terms of what BF could offer from Poole and may well tie in with what a reliable friend in Sweden has mentioned. BF are looking at two further E-Flexers from Stena's batch 2's to replace Cap' Finistere & Pont Aven, this together with the lengthened berth at Poole could signal the green light for the Cap' to replace Pelican from 2021 giving BF the larger capacity and departure volume which the Spanish market is beginning to demand. It would also finally see Pont Aven replacing Bretagne from 2022.

 

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44 minutes ago, jonno said:

The new quay opens up further possibilities in terms of what BF could offer from Poole and may well tie in with what a reliable friend in Sweden has mentioned. BF are looking at two further E-Flexers from Stena's batch 2's to replace Cap' Finistere & Pont Aven, this together with the lengthened berth at Poole could signal the green light for the Cap' to replace Pelican from 2021 giving BF the larger capacity and departure volume which the Spanish market is beginning to demand.

 

That's most interesting. Life is one long learning curve isn't it. I hadn't realized that the Cap Finistere was actually hindged in the middle. As far as I can see that's the only way that it would be possible to berth the back end on Ro-Ro3 and secure the front end on the new quay. Perhaps they could use the E-Flexer if that's what the name means.:)

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"BF are looking at two further E-Flexers from Stena's batch 2's to replace Cap' Finistere & Pont Aven, this together with the lengthened berth at Poole could signal the green light for the Cap' to replace Pelican from 2021 giving BF the larger capacity and departure volume which the Spanish market is beginning to demand."

<<< That makes total sense,  as the E-Flexer will be a higher class than both, and certainly wouldn't be an econmie vessel, so I can't see how they could position the PONT easily alongside... Where did you hear this by the way? I imagine if that all happens, Bretagne would certainly go, and Pont be St Malo full time. However, what Spain should would/could serve Plymouth??

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49 minutes ago, jonno said:

Ok, tin hat firmly in place and the chin strap tightened...

Is BF's UK MD attending as he's the bearer of a bit of bad news which is the reason why the open evening has been put back until after the Christmas period? 

I wonder whether they are shutting down Poole-Cherbourg in early 2019 until the summer with Barfleur relocating to Le Havre awaiting Normandie whilst Etretat covers for BDS awaiting the E-Flexer. Cherbourg would be covered by NEX beginning her season a month earlier.

I tend to agree with Gareth's outlook that Etretat will be returning to Stena and Economie is ditched rather than have her replace Pelican at Poole for the growing Spanish market.

If BDS was retained I'd possibly think differently in terms of both Economie & Pelican but for me the Visentini is unsuitable for longer sea crossings and is possibly the reason why we saw the DFDS charter in the first place with Etretat confined to Le Havre.

The new quay opens up further possibilities in terms of what BF could offer from Poole and may well tie in with what a reliable friend in Sweden has mentioned. BF are looking at two further E-Flexers from Stena's batch 2's to replace Cap' Finistere & Pont Aven, this together with the lengthened berth at Poole could signal the green light for the Cap' to replace Pelican from 2021 giving BF the larger capacity and departure volume which the Spanish market is beginning to demand. It would also finally see Pont Aven replacing Bretagne from 2022.

 

Very interesting!  I had myself wondered if Barfleur could be removed from Poole-Cherbourg in order to plug a gap somewhere else.  Unfortunately it's topics like this which tend not to be discussed at these open meetings.  What may get mentioned is South Quay and is it likely to give the port the hoped for boost?  It should be noted that it is not a linkspan berth.  As I have said I have heard Poole hasn't secured the number of cruiseship calls they were hoping for once this facility became available.  I don't know if this is right but it was indicated at a previous open meeting that there are no current plans to equip this facility with a linkspan but, of course, things can change.

In fairness to PHC it should be pointed out that of the up to one hundred trust ports like Poole in the UK Poole is, I believe, the only one that holds these open meetings.  I daresay the Ports Division of the Department for Transport which supervises trust ports wishes more would do so as a means of relating the port to the local community.

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Given that it was widely reported that BF only gave PHC a matter of a couple of days notice last time Barfleur was withdrawn is it likely that they would be prepared to stand up in front of a packed PHC open evening to publicly declare the suspension of the route? Public declarations are usually reserved for good news while press releases in the middle of the night contain the bad news.

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One of the subjects which could be raised with the Harbour Engineer at the Open Meeting either with a question from the floor or in conversation afterwards is whether Poole's RoRo 3 could be lengthened, e.g. by means of cylindrical piles -- as seems to be the case at Le Havre's ferry berth used by BF.

One presumes the maximum length for South Quay is 220m which is the maximum for the Harbour subject to the vessel's manoeuvrability.  I don't know what the scope is for installing a linkspan at this location but one would suppose that some quay length would be lost should such a facility be installed.

57 minutes ago, G4rth said:

That's most interesting. Life is one long learning curve isn't it. I hadn't realized that the Cap Finistere was actually hindged in the middle. As far as I can see that's the only way that it would be possible to berth the back end on Ro-Ro3 and secure the front end on the new quay. Perhaps they could use the E-Flexer if that's what the name means.:)

Norman Asturias used RoRo 3 and these Visentinis are 186.5m overall length.  The E-Flexers will be 214.5m overall length.  Cap Finistere is 204m.

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1 hour ago, hf_uk said:

"BF are looking at two further E-Flexers from Stena's batch 2's to replace Cap' Finistere & Pont Aven, this together with the lengthened berth at Poole could signal the green light for the Cap' to replace Pelican from 2021 giving BF the larger capacity and departure volume which the Spanish market is beginning to demand."

<<< That makes total sense,  as the E-Flexer will be a higher class than both, and certainly wouldn't be an econmie vessel, so I can't see how they could position the PONT easily alongside... Where did you hear this by the way? I imagine if that all happens, Bretagne would certainly go, and Pont be St Malo full time. However, what Spain should would/could serve Plymouth??

A have a friend of 25 years who has a vested interest in all things Stena. HF If PEGASIS was to be for Plymouth then an E-Flexer will be no problem, both vessels are very similar.

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19 minutes ago, Hawser Trunnion said:

One of the subjects which could be raised with the Harbour Engineer at the Open Meeting either with a question from the floor or in conversation afterwards is whether Poole's RoRo 3 could be lengthened, e.g. by means of cylindrical piles -- as seems to be the case at Le Havre's ferry berth used by BF.

One presumes the maximum length for South Quay is 220m which is the maximum for the Harbour subject to the vessel's manoeuvrability.  I don't know what the scope is for installing a linkspan at this location but one would suppose that some quay length would be lost should such a facility be installed.

Norman Asturias used RoRo 3 and these Visentinis are 186.5m overall length.  The E-Flexers will be 214.5m overall length.  Cap Finistere is 204m.

HT if you look at P&O's facility in Rotterdam on Google Maps it offers a fine illustration of what can be achieved in a limited area. Both Prides are 215m in length.

All of the obstacles for Poole such as congestion due to access etc have been done to death but one could argue that Plymouth for many is a greater distance and has similar logistical problems... None of that seems to detract from it's popularity as a  departure port.

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1 hour ago, jonno said:

A have a friend of 25 years who has a vested interest in all things Stena. HF If PEGASIS was to be for Plymouth then an E-Flexer will be no problem, both vessels are very similar.

I thought Plymouth could take upto 210 metres top, but e-flexers are 220?

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7 minutes ago, hf_uk said:

I thought Plymouth could take upto 210 metres top, but e-flexers are 220?

The E-Flexer is 212m X 27.8m, 2 metres longer but nearly 5m narrower than Peggy.

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