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Gareth

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   Of course it may be a mutiny by the Italian crew after having to spend the New Years in Ringaskiddy with only Fowleys Bar to entertain them , I can sympathise with them , myself having spent many years based in Haulbowline  down the road .

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Looks like yesterday’s departure from Santander and today’s from Cork were also cancelled.  Again, due to “technical problems”.

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According to the BF Twitter feed, she is due to leave Santander tomorrow at midday unless there are any further technical issues to resolve. Ed. 

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There is a strike in Le Havre this weekend. From the BF website :

Portsmouth to Le Havre - Le Havre to Portsmouth

We are sorry to advise that due to a strike within the port of Le Havre, the following sailings have been cancelled. Please call 01752 648637 for advice and alternatives.

Sunday 13 January Portsmouth to Le Havre at 23:30
Monday 14 January Le Havre to Portsmouth at 17:00

Please accept our apologies for the inconvenience caused.

Ed

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Perhaps it would be easier if they published a list of dates when they were prepared to work....

Edited by Paully
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Makes you wonder whether the subsidy for enhanced ferry services ahould have been for routes to Belgium and the Netherlands rather than France.  Operating to France is so unreliable.

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Just now, wortley said:

Is this the same Le Havre to which the company is planning to increase the number of sailings? 

Perhaps this idea of running Normandie to Le Havre could be reworked and they could run a three ship operation to Caen with a Saturday 12.00 departure from Portsmouth (allowing people to get there in the morning) and arriving in Ouistreham at around 18.30 (allowing people to reach their destination or at least get a good headstart). They could then move her in ballast to Le Havre for the overnight crossing (or keep her in Ouistreham if there was a strike and bring the departure forward slightly). 

There could even be something more ambitious with her serving Cherbourg too. As a bit of fun (and having taken inspiration from the master of this type of thing 😀) she could for example do:

Dep Portsmouth Sat 12.00

Arr Ouistreham Sat 18.30

Dep Le Havre Sat 22.00

Arr Portsmouth Sun 07.00

Dep Portsmouth Sun 09.00 

Arr Cherbourg Sun 14.30

Dep Cherbourg Sun 16.30

Arr Portsmouth Sun 20.00

Dep Portsmouth Sun 23.00

Arr Le Havre Mon 08.00

Layover and Crew Change

Dep le Havre Mon 16.00

Arr Portsmouth Mon 21.00

Dep Portsmouth Mon 23.00

Arr Cherbourg Tue 07.00

Dep Cherbourg Tue 09.00

Arr Portsmouth Tue 14.30

Dep Portsmouth Tue 16.00

Arr Cherbourg Tue 21.30

Dep Cherbourg Tue 23.00

Arr Portsmouth Wed 07.00

Dep Portsmouth Wed 09.00

Arr Le Havre Wed 16.00

Dep Le Havre Wed 18.00

Arr Portsmouth 23.00

Dep Portsmouth Thurs 01.00

Arr Cherbourg Thurs 08.00

Dep Cherbourg Thurs 10.00

Arr Portsmouth Thurs 13.30

Dep Portsmouth Thurs 15.30

Arr Le Havre Thurs 22.30

Dep Le Havre Fri 00.00

Arr Portsmouth Fri 08.00

Dep Portsmouth Fri 10.00

Arr Ouistreham Fri 16.30

Dep Ouistreham Fri 18.00

Arr Portsmouth Fri 22.30

Dep Portsmouth Sat 00.00

Arr Cherbourg Sat 05.30

Dep Cherbourg Sat 07.00

Arr Portsmouth Sat 10.30

Dep Portsmouth Sat 12.00...

I've tried to avoid, where possible, conflicts with existing crossings and also suggest timings which would allow freight to pass through Portsmouth when there is perhaps less other traffic. It gives 3 extra Ouistreham crossings, 7 extra Le Havre crossings and 10 extra Cherbourg crossings per week. There is some leeway built into the timings too in case of delays. Ed. 

 

 

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It’s still all French though, isn’t it Ed.  All three of those ports have shown vulnerability to strike action by dock workers over the last few years.  Sailing to French ports will always carry a risk of sudden disruption.

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16 minutes ago, Gareth said:

It’s still all French though, isn’t it Ed.  All three of those ports have shown vulnerability to strike action by dock workers over the last few years.  Sailing to French ports will always carry a risk of sudden disruption.

I know but if that's where all the products are coming from then rerouting them via the Netherlands or Belgium will just add to the cost and time. The question of whether BF was chosen due to its network or its geographic situation is not clear but they didn't suggest any extra Spanish services so it seems to me France is where they anticipate the greatest backlog (nothing new there I suppose!) and the greatest need for extra capacity. Anyway we are off topic here now, but Paully is right (above) in that Le Havre does now seem to be a hotbed for disruption. Ed. 

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I bet there’s more traffic that routes through Calais that comes from the heart of Central Europe than from France.  Sure, some traffic would be better routing through Le Havre / Ouistreham / Cherbourg, but an awful lot would be just as happy aiming for Ostend / Zeebrugge / Vlissingen.

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18 minutes ago, Cabin-boy said:

Le Havre does now seem to be a hotbed for disruption.

It is at least organised disruption with at least a week's notice - usually more.

Ouistreham seems to go for more spontaneous strikes, where you don't know it's happening until your ramp is blocked !

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4 minutes ago, David Williams said:

It is at least organised disruption with at least a week's notice - usually more.

Ouistreham seems to go for more spontaneous strikes, where you don't know it's happening until your ramp is blocked !

The French would probably see that as part of their uniqueness! 🤣 Ed. 

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1 minute ago, Cabin-boy said:

The French would probably see that as part of their uniqueness! 🤣 Ed. 

It is, indeed, a uniquely French.....hmmm....characteristic.  But not a helpful one if the aim is to set up reliable contingency transport links to ensure guaranteed maintenance of supply chains.  It’s always been a problem (I remember the fishermen blockade in 1980) but it seems more regular now than it used to be.

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5 minutes ago, Gareth said:

it seems more regular now than it used to be.

Us SNCF users down here in the Loire do agree that the strikes are now more regular (and predictable) than the actual train services. That might be a French interpretation of progress! Ed. 

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'Mont St Michel' has an issue with the Cooling System, it's possible she will be taking on a pilot and both tugs 'Guardsman' and 'Yorkshireman' are on stand-by.

Edited by TonyMWeaver

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