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SAILING UPDATES: 2021 Latest News


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CAP FINISTERE in Le Havre tonight (from Southampton's quay) : 

Pictures of the day 😉 View from the SS FRANCE :    

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3 minutes ago, Gareth said:

I suspect there is a slight alignment issue with where they’ve put Portsmouth-Santander, in that I assume that is meant to align with Galicia rather than Cotentin.

Yes, I've copied and pasted to make it easier to read.

Cross-Channel ferry and holiday company Brittany Ferries is extending the suspension of some services operating between the UK, France and Spain.
The move follows continued stringent travel restrictions for passengers on both sides of the Channel. Only essential travel is currently permitted, and there is little prospect of this easing in the near future. Four ships that are currently laid-up, but which had been due to resume service in late March, will not now resume service until mid-May at the earliest.
Under the revised plans, the following ships and routes will not operate as planned from 22nd March:
 
BARFLEUR:
Poole to Cherbourg
 
BRETAGNE:
Portsmouth to St Malo
 
CAP FINISTERE:
Portsmouth to Bilbao
Portsmouth to Santander
 
PONT-AVEN:
Plymouth to Roscoff
Plymouth to Santander
Cork to Roscoff
 
The following ships and routes will however continue to operate as scheduled, to accommodate those with essential travel requirements and to allow freight to flow freely:
 
ARMORIQUE:
Route to be confirmed
 
CONNEMARA:
Rosslare to Cherbourg
Rosslare to Bilbao
 
COTENTIN:
Portsmouth to Le Havre*
 
GALICIA:
Portsmouth to Santander
Portsmouth to Cherbourg
 
MONT ST MICHEL
Portsmouth to Caen
 
NORMANDIE
Portsmouth to Caen*
 
*Freight Only!
 
In the coming days, Brittany Ferries will contact customers who hold bookings on affected sailings, to offer alternative travel or a refund.
“Naturally we very much regret any inconvenience that these changes will cause our customers,” said Christophe Mathieu, Brittany Ferries’ CEO. “We had hoped for a return to service for all our routes in mid-March, but the reality is that most people are simply unable to travel at this time. Booking levels are extremely low and we are relying on loans to carry us through this difficult period. It is therefore simply not viable to run loss-making routes at this time.”
“But we continue to monitor the health and travel situation in all our markets – UK, Ireland, France and Spain. As soon as our customers can travel again, we will be there for them. We are also pushing governments to set out a pragmatic, co-ordinated and clear roadmap to safely re-open travel as soon as the health situation permits. We believe that the ramp-up of vaccines means that this re-opening could be considered sooner rather than later.”
Brittany Ferries says it will remain a predominantly freight-only service for now. However, while it thanks all freight customers and drivers for their support during the crisis, only 20 per cent of its annual turnover comes from freight traffic.
Around 80 per cent of annual income is generated by holidaymakers.
In 2020, the company secured a €117 million loan from French banks to carry it through the most difficult period in its history. It has therefore been forced to take tough decisions on costs throughout the crisis, to ensure the long-term viability of routes and services. Brittany Ferries remains committed to serving passengers, freight and supporting businesses throughout the regions it serves, and thanks everyone for their patience and messages of support.
Edited by TonyMWeaver
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I wonder whether they will bother bringing Barfleur out of hibernation for the sake of 2 weeks' cover on the Le Havre route.  Doubt it - which would mean either a 2 week suspension of Le Havre after Etretat finishes or a transfer across of Cotentin (and suspension of Poole-Cherbourg) 2 weeks' early.

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1 minute ago, Gareth said:

I wonder whether they will bother bringing Barfleur out of hibernation for the sake of 2 weeks' cover on the Le Havre route.

I think they will scrap that, shame really, I was looking forward to that.

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1 minute ago, David Williams said:

No great surprise, however I am surprised that they did not give a restart date, otherwise they will have to refund all dates!

It says 'mid-May at the earliest'. Which is legal speak for 'We've covered ourselves so don't think of complaining'.

Ed

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37 minutes ago, Cabin-boy said:

It says 'mid-May at the earliest'. Which is legal speak for 'We've covered ourselves so don't think of complaining'.

Ed

I missed that, makes sense as a date to aim for.

ps it also says refunds only for March / April !

Edited by David Williams
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5 minutes ago, Chef said:

So what about Armoriue and it's Roscoff/Cork service due to start on 23rd March , no mention of it in the press release .

It says that Armorique will continue in service, freight-only, but that her route(s) haven’t been decided.  I guess they will review loadings for these Ireland-Brittany routes before deciding what to do with Armorique beyond the end of the currently-scheduled sailings (which go to the end of Feb).

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Sorry, just re-read the statement and it doesn’t actually state freight only next to Armorique.  But it must surely be the case that that will be the mode in which she carries on.

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Regarding Plymouth...we should note that the ARMORIQUE's use is not declared beyond the indication that she will be used so conceivably one possibility is that she will be back on Plymouth - Roscoff / Roscoff - Cork as planned.

Same as NORMANDIE EXPRESS.  There might be no mention of her but she wouldn't be starting before May anyhow.

 

 

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Brittany Ferries Freight timetables are now updated to show a 16 May return for PONT-AVEN and 17 May return for BRETAGNE, BARFLEUR and CAP FINISTERE.

 

ARMORIQUE remains unchanged from before - clearly pending decisions on her use.

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20 minutes ago, RickOShea said:

Brittany Ferries Freight timetables are now updated to show a 16 May return for PONT-AVEN and 17 May return for BRETAGNE, BARFLEUR and CAP FINISTERE.

 

ARMORIQUE remains unchanged from before - clearly pending decisions on her use.

Updated timetables still do not show Cotentin in the Le Havre schedules.  The Barfleur fortnight has, however (and as expected) been removed.  Poole-Cherbourg timetables also still show Cotentin finishing there as previously scheduled, on 3 April.

So, currently no Poole-Cherbourg route after 3 April, and no Portsmouth-Le Havre route after 21 March.  I wonder if both of these routes are in the mix for both Armorique and Cotentin deployment?  Or whether the government contracts have now expired and therefore no obligation to run them?

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Due to poor weather...

18/2/21 - ARMORIQUE Rosslare - St Malo - cancelled.

19/2/21 - ARMORIQUE St Malo - Cork - cancelled.

18/2/21 - CONNEMARA Bilbao - Rosslare - cancelled

19/2/21 - CONNEMARA Rosslare - Bilbao - cancelled.

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5 minutes ago, Gareth said:

Updated timetables still do not show Cotentin in the Le Havre schedules.  The Barfleur fortnight has, however (and as expected) been removed.  Poole-Cherbourg timetables also still show Cotentin finishing there as previously scheduled, on 3 April.

So, currently no Poole-Cherbourg route after 3 April, and no Portsmouth-Le Havre route after 21 March.  I wonder if both of these routes are in the mix for both Armorique and Cotentin deployment?  Or whether the government contracts have now expired and therefore no obligation to run them?

Press release was pretty clear that COTENTIN was going on to Portsmouth - Le Havre.  I suspect there are a few details being ironed out around that "overlap period" of ETRETAT being due to finish and when COTENTIN was originally due to move over (previously being done by BARFLEUR).  I suspect that's why the timetable hasn't been updated.

I think we can safely say ARMORIQUE will be sailing to Brittany - whether it is the current freight only timetable, the current scheduled timetable or some mix of both.

Poole - Cherbourg Dft Brexit capacity is 3 months, Le Havre is 6 months.

I included a few details in my report that weren't in the press release but were verified with BF

 

https://www.niferry.co.uk/covid-travel-restrictions-force-brittany-ferries-to-extend-ferry-cancellations/

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Ok, thanks Rick.  In other words, Cotentin can move to Le Havre and not be replaced at Poole, because the Poole contract will have expired.

I wonder if they will just use Armorique to plug the gap at Le Havre.  Taking her off the Brittany routes probably won’t be a big deal for a fortnight - and they could even take the opportunity to try out a Rosslare-Le Havre trip in each direction as she repositions.

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6 minutes ago, Gareth said:

Ok, thanks Rick.  In other words, Cotentin can move to Le Havre and not be replaced at Poole, because the Poole contract will have expired.

I wonder if they will just use Armorique to plug the gap at Le Havre.  Taking her off the Brittany routes probably won’t be a big deal for a fortnight - and they could even take the opportunity to try out a Rosslare-Le Havre trip in each direction as she repositions.

All possible I guess!  And yes Poole - Cherbourg is suspended until BARLFEUR eventually returns to service.

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3 minutes ago, RickOShea said:

COTENTIN has been cancelled today and tomorrow due to poor weather.

19/2/21 0830 Poole - Cherbourg

19/2/21 1815 Cherbourg - Poole

20/2/21 0830 Poole - Cherbourg

20/2/21 1815 Cherbourg - Poole

Strange, I note that Pelican is currently on it’s way back to Poole & that Cherbourg is open. When Barfleur was cancelled regularly there were comments re weak bow thrusters, does the Contentin have a weakness ?

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28 minutes ago, David Williams said:

Strange

Not really.  Like I said, it's hardly ever just about weather.  As you say, if it was, then all the ferries operating in the arena would be stopping.  Very occasionally that is indeed the case, but conditions have to get up to force 10 or Force 11 for weather to be the only factor at play.  I'm not saying it's dishonest for the companies to attribute the cancellation to "weather", because that is indeed a factor in the equation.  (Along with other factors....like loadings, for example).  I'm not aware that Cotentin is afflicted by the same peculiar bow thruster power issue that bedevils Barfleur.

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It is quite blustery down here and the wind really does whistle around Poole Harbour so not surprised.  I went down the seafront earlier today in Bournemouth and it is indeed a bit on the windy side!!

Cotentin is quite high sided as well, could figure that in?

Edited by Khaines
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1 hour ago, Gareth said:

Not really.  Like I said, it's hardly ever just about weather.  As you say, if it was, then all the ferries operating in the arena would be stopping.  Very occasionally that is indeed the case, but conditions have to get up to force 10 or Force 11 for weather to be the only factor at play.  I'm not saying it's dishonest for the companies to attribute the cancellation to "weather", because that is indeed a factor in the equation.  (Along with other factors....like loadings, for example).  I'm not aware that Cotentin is afflicted by the same peculiar bow thruster power issue that bedevils Barfleur.

I get where you are coming run but remember the nature of the COTENTIN's operation at the moment - it does not make sense to cancel unless you have no choice.

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