Sunday, 26 October 2014


TIME to INVEST in DOVER .. see below post 1151..
Also latest...Port gives Quarter Million to Community Fund...see 1136 below.
DFDS SEAWAYS ideas for autumn...see post 1133.
LATEST - FREE WINE with P&O - see post 1092.
New head of Marine Operations for the Port...more below in 1127.
Phoenix Angling Club raise Fab Sum for LIFEBOAT...see 1117.
A Fishy Sunday Lunch 1106
Dover Harbour Board chairman reappointed...see post 1097.
Port of Dover Exercise....see post 1069.
Merchant Navy Memorial Service on seafront see 1052.
A Great Summer Season for the Port of Dover, see 1049.

The LIFEBOAT in the thick of the action again. See 976. see also LATEST LIFEBOAT PICTURES 1156.
DOVER LIFEBOAT..tragic start to the August Bank Holiday Weekend see 1012.
THE SEA DREAM I FIRST VISIT in posts 987, 989. ALSO See latest picture of the inaugural presentation 1020.
The Ryndam - leaving Dover for the last time..see 1041. Also 1064 for latest.
MY FERRY LINK - two years old, see Post 1031.
Sea News - one year old 1023.
Summer at the Port of Dover, see 944. also Breaking New Ground with the Port of Dover see 1016.
The Port of Dover Community Regatta....first pictures in 914..then 918 and 929..also 920 for THE BLADES.

Charlie Elphicke MP - Thoughts on the Port - see post 818. Further thoughts 955....see LATEST BELOW at 1061.
MyFerryLink..New Appeal in Post 906
UK Border Agency in close operation..see 884, 886.
RECORD FREIGHT Departures see 883.
IMPORTANT STATEMENTS BELOW on the future of MyFerryLink..see 850, 853.
THE TOUR de FRANCE passing through see posts 870, 877, 882.
Seafront Air Ambulance drama see 858, 860.
Calais 867 and Calais Lifeboat...828.
Aerial Map of berths 815.
Pictorial Tribute to the Dover Lifeboat guys...see 799
MARCHING FORWARD see 411 and 687.

Picture: Tall sailing ship Mercedes moving past Dover in rough seas tuesday evening

For all the general sea news and pictures see down this page and over the many pages. and have merged to produce an entirely local and comprehensive Dover website. Please feel free to join in with the discussion and chatter. See the link to on the menu left for the latest frontpage topical news stories, and/or click on Forums Direct on the menu left to join in with the latest chat.
Nautical contributions are welcome on this page - max 4 pictures preferred per contribution, all pictures remain own photographers copyright. to send Sea News pix or info..or click ADD YOUR COMMENT below to post direct. Paul Boland.
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Your Comments (Newest First):
Post 1172
  ColetteB, Dover
A G&T whilst ambling gently around the harbour on the stylish Sea Dawn, what's not to like!! yes please Smiley
That's a cracking Super Sailing Ship at the top of the page Smiley

Saturday, 25 October 2014 - 13:56
Post 1171
  PaulB, Dover
Anyone for a G&T...
This classic style cruiser called Sea Dawn spent most of the afternoon a couple of days ago, during a calm interlude in the turbulent weather, just ambling quietly and gently around the harbour. Its old classic lines which are almost reminiscent of the best days of Hollywood prompted me to search the web to see if it was a noted vessel...and here we are.

An excerpt from famed auctioneer Bonhams catalogue in 2008..

"Sea Dawn" A Rampart 48 Gentleman's Motor Cruiser
Length:48ft.(14.63m) Beam:11ft.2in.(3.40m) Draft:4ft.9in.(1.45m)

Built by Rampart Boat Building Co., Southampton in 1960 of mahogany on rock elm timbers, with iroko decks. Painted white to the waterline and red below, with a black boot top.

Engines: Twin Perkins P6 diesel. Instrumentation includes Revolution counters, ammeter, oil pressure, fuel and water temperature gauges. Fitted with 24volt electrics and eight storage batteries, with management system.

General arrangement: Foredeck of laid planks, with galvanised cleats, fairleads and anchor windlass. Varnished guardrail with metal stanchions, square hatch to forepeak and glazed skylight to cabin. Ventilators to engine compartment. Varnished mahogany wheelhouse with port side entry, grab rails and tabernacle for steadying sail mast. Outside steering position to the rear, with dual wheel and engine controls. Raised aft cabin top with clerestory glazing and cream roof. Step down to small aft deck, of varnished laid planks, with sampson posts, fairleads, central warping winch and ensign staff.

Open cockpit aft, with upholstered side bench seats. Gas locker stowage beneath the starboard side, open stowage to port. Step down via double doors to Saloon, with sofa/berth to port, "L" shaped sofa to starboard, which opens to double berth. Fitted with storage cupboards and bookshelf. Single doorway to Galley space, with worktop to port and fridge beneath, gimballed gas cooker to starboard with stainless steel double drainer sink and gas water heater.

Bulkhead doors to engine space. Step up to wheelhouse, with hydraulic steering to port, bench seating and chart space. Step down with heads compartment to starboard, having a pump-out sea toilet and Porta Potti. Washroom to port, with hot/cold running water and shower, draining into separate sump. Door to sleeping cabin, with berths to port and starboard, stowage beneath and hanging cupboard. Further door to crew space, with two pipe cots to starboard, warp and sail stowage to port and anchor chain locker forward.

Saleroom notices...Late entry lot.
"Sea Dawn" A Rampart 48 Gentleman's motor cruiser Built by Rampart Boat Building Co., Southampton in 1960 of mahogany on rock elm timbers, with iroko decks. Engines: Twin Perkins P6 diesel. Instrumentation includes Revolution counters, ammeter, oil pressure, fuel and water temperature gauges. Fitted with 24volt electrics and eight storage batteries, with management system. Estimate £52,000-55,000

Very interesting info below Mike. Smiley

That sounds like both a tough job and a great job all at the same time Vic. Yes wages were that low alright in the old days...I mentioned this wage level to my daughter just the other day, and she immediately assumed I was talking about the hourly rate...I said no...we got about £5 a week!!
Strewth!! Smiley

Saturday, 25 October 2014 - 08:39
Post 1170
  vic matcham, Dover
When I left school waiting till I went in the Army one of my first jobs was being a cabin boy on the pilot cutters out of Dover staying at sea one week at a time we would have the pilots living on the ship and being taken over to the ships by small boat best paid job for a boy of my age pay was £5 aweek alot of money in the 1950s SmileyBUT MOST OF THE TIME i WAS SEA SICK.

Friday, 24 October 2014 - 20:18
Post 1169
  Mike J., Dover
I’m sure PaulB was right about the pilot boat yesterday afternoon.
Earlier in the afternoon the bulk carrier YEOMANBROOK & the container ship CAP HAMILTON called off the port for the same reasons.

This is a quite common practice when the weather is bad & the pilots are unable to leave their ships after leaving Continental ports, particularly ships from Antwerp when they leave the River Scheldt & the pilot boat there [sometimes a helicopter] operate in a very exposed area.

If the weather is still too bad at Dover for the ‘over-carried’ pilot to disembark, they usually have to stay aboard until Brixham.

When the Ostend service was running out of Dover back in the 90s I remember that occasionally an ‘Ostender’ would be delayed for a few minutes to allow the Belgian pilot to join rather than a long wait for the next service.

The pilots are usually landed by one of George Hammond’s yellow launches - a long-established Dover company founded in 1767 who have had deep involvement with the port & shipping in general for many years.
They provide a multitude of services, from stevedoring to their own pilotage service & much else besides.
Their website is worth a look -

Meantime, down in the Tug Haven, the DAUNTLESS was carefully snuggling up to the BOULONNAIS after returning from a job.

Friday, 24 October 2014 - 08:46
Post 1168
  PaulB, Dover
It was a tough ol' day again yesterday Thursday out there on the briny blue. Especially later in the day when the weather closed in. These pictures of the giant Goonyella Trader were taken around 5pm as the ship moved in close to harbour. I think we ascertained that when they do this procedure it is usually to drop off a pilot or sometimes for a change of crew. We reckon it was the pilot option yesterday as the small pilot boat bobbed and weaved its way out to the ship in the rough seas and just as it began to drizzle too...just to add to the difficulty.

The picture at the tip top of page is clearly our best pic of the delightful Mercedes tall Dutch sailing ship. But I guess it is worth adding the one immediately above here just to show the contrast of the various vessels afloat out there. The huge ferry beats down upon the by-comparison rather delicate looking tall sailing ship but of course all was safe. I say delicate sailing ship...but it dashed through the rough water with optimum ease, so it appeared anyway. It looked terrific. Yours truly wouldn't fancy it in that weather however as ones sea legs are still trying to recover from the Princess Maud !

Well done with those pix below Mike. Good to see those. Yes big progress has been made at the old Seacat berth, popped down there on Monday to see the cruise liners up close and got some pictures of the dive vessel, the divers were working at the time...must fetch the pictures out of the system.

Friday, 24 October 2014 - 07:30
Post 1167
  Mike J., Dover
Nice pix [& interesting story] from PaulB about ESMERALDA & BOULONNAIS & super sailing ship shot at the top of the page.

The DOUGHTY is currently away for refit up in Hull.

Having their own refits & a spot of TLC on the onetime Commercial Quay on Wednesday were the former lifeboat MAXIMUS & the hard-working DHB survey launch DIANA.

It looks like like the Seacat berth job is about finished with only tidying-up going on.

Thursday, 23 October 2014 - 07:01
Post 1166
  PaulB, Dover
We have had a couple of working boats from Boulogne right here with us in the harbour over the past few days. First of all we saw the hi-speed action from Lifeboat Boulonnais alongside our own Lifeboat, pictures further down the page in post 1156, now we have tugboat Boulonnais right in the thick of it. We understand this tug is replacing Doughty in the short term as presumably Doughty is away for a refit.

The picture above was taken over the weekend in calmer conditions...the picture below was taken in rough ol' conditions on tuesday as she went to meet the approaching Esmeralda. Some of the guys will know more about this tugboat for any further information or memories welcome.
Yes there she is above heading out to meet Cargo ship Esmeralda ( One promised not to do the joke about 'The Bells The Bells' again but alas one has a soft spot for Esmeralda and cant resist Smiley )

There is a story about Esmeralda's arrival. Both tugs were ready to meet her at about 17.50. The picture below was taken at that time as she approached. Within minutes the mother and father of a squall/thunderstorm hit us with flashing lightning and all the rest, and with driving rain like you would only see in a monsoon. In the space of five minutes.. no more, the conditions had transformed from a sunlit evening to pitch black hell. All happening as Esmeralda entered harbour. After a short while they had to abandon docking Esmeralda and she went back out into the open sea again. Clearly it wasn't safe. Don't recall seeing such a situation before. Never a dull moment here in Dover eh ! She returned later that night and all was well.

Hope all enjoy the fab sailing ship at the top of page. Wow! was that sea rough !! yet she streaked through with maximum elegance.

Thursday, 23 October 2014 - 06:41
Post 1165
  PaulB, Dover
Another picture above from our glorious Monday when the weather was fabulous with cruise liners 'exotique' to match. But in the midst of all this excitable cruise liner activity some of the other vital activities were going on as well and of course must not be overlooked...the pic above shows the UK Border Agency setting off on monday morning to tackle whatever the day brings again out in the channel. Here we see Seeker, our protector against all sorts of marauders .. just whispering by the AIDA Cara on her way out to sea. Note that big eye on the AIDA Cara...watching the watchers!

By Tuesday the weather had turned rough. We were scarily promised all kinds of levels of Armageddon by the newspapers, the tail end of Hurricane Gonzo or whatever they called it, but in actual terms in transpired to be not much more than a windy you can see in the pix below. First one shows the Pride of Kent just leaving the harbour and finding out just how rough it is. Several minutes later the Spirit of France began her approach once Kent was out of the way.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014 - 06:56
Post 1164
  PaulB, Dover
Monday was a fabulous day for cruise liners in the Port of Dover and no mistake. Both the giant AIDA Sol and the smaller AIDA Cara arrived in an impressive double header and looked absolutely fantastic all day in Dover's glorious sunshine. Of course we here in Dover laid on the sunshine specially so that the season could go out in...well in a blaze of sunshine. We had not expected the AIDA Sol but here she was, all 72,000 tons of her. They both left last night around 19.40 (7.40pm) moving away in a dazzling array of electrical colour. The AIDA Sol moving slowly across the harbour first and leaving through the eastern exit...followed slightly later by the AIDA Cara out the western exit and both turned south in tandem for the journey to Le Havre.

Top shot AIDA Sol, then AIDA Sol and AIDA Cara...then AIDA Cara.

Great stuff below lads. Crackers below there in post 1161 Ed of the AIDA ships, the second one in particular full of atmosphere..lovin it !
Real classic ferries in post 1162 from Mike. Gosh well before my time in frontline Dover, amazing to see those..glad you enjoyed those Vic.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014 - 08:20
Post 1163
  vic matcham, Dover
I worked on both of them +the St David alot of my welding holding them up. Smiley. IT would be great to see one of them back in Dover and made into a sea Heritage centre .Smiley

Tuesday, 21 October 2014 - 04:09
Post 1162
  Mike J., Dover

These two former Dover ferries are laid up in the southern Spanish port of Algeciras & were photographed last week.

They've been there since 2012 following the bankruptcy of their Moroccan owners who used them in a service across the Strait of Gibraltar.

Sealink’s ST.CHRISTOPHER is now the IBN BATOUTA & left Dover in 1991.
The former RMT ferry REINE ASTRID [the second Belgian ferry with this name] left the Dover/Ostend service in 1998 & is now the AL MANSOUR.

Their full histories can be seen in the ‘Past & Present’ feature on the DOVER FERRY PHOTOS website.

Both ships face an uncertain future as do several other elderly ferries also laid up in the port & their next voyage could well be to the shipbreakers.

The ST.CHRISTOPHER’s sister ship, the ST.ANSELM remains in service in the Adriatic & can be seen on AIS as the BARI running between southern Italy & Albania.

Monday, 20 October 2014 - 23:15
Post 1161
  Ed Connell, Dover
AIDAsol and AIDAcara

Monday, 20 October 2014 - 19:54
Post 1160
  PaulB, Sea News, Dover.

Minister sees Positive Vision of the Future
... and the world class Port of Dover operation

The team at the Port of Dover was delighted to welcome Minister of State for Transport, the Rt. Hon. John Hayes MP, for a tour of the Port and discussions on how the UK’s busiest port is undergoing major development whilst delivering record volumes of freight traffic as the economy continues to grow.

The Minister visited Port Control, the nerve centre that ensures safe vessel movements at the Port, as well as Terminal Control, which controls all landside activity. He also observed the ongoing refurbishment of Berth 2, part of an ongoing major programme of berth refurbishment and renewal, and saw how the ongoing Traffic Management Improvement project at Dover is already transforming the Port to deliver a better customer experience for the 13 million passengers who already choose Dover as their gateway to and from the UK.

Tim Waggott, Chief Executive, Port of Dover said:

“It was a real privilege to host the Minister in our fabulous port. We were greatly encouraged that he clearly saw the benefits of our vision for the future to the Port, to Dover and the UK.

“He also recognised that alongside the positive recent developments of the community fund and progress on the appointment of community directors, the team was continuing to deliver a first class operational performance, essential for the economic prosperity of the nation. We look forward to welcoming him back to Dover in the near future.”


Picture from left to right: George Jenkins OBE (Chairman Dover Harbour Board), Tim Waggott (Chief Executive Dover Harbour Board), Charlie Elphicke (MP for Dover), Rt. Hon. John Hayes MP Minister of State for Transport, Michael Grace (Development Engineer) and Jack Goodhew (General Manager, Technical & Engineering Services).

* *

Yes indeed Kevin a double whammy of AIDA ships in today. They have taken us all by surprise. We wake to find an array of cruise lights not seen here for a while. The AIDA Cara is in as expected but the AIDA SOL which is a total whopper (to give it a technical term) is also in. It looks twice the size of the AIDA Cara at a guess.

It was dark when they came so no pictures sadly so if anyone can bag a shot you know where to put it.Smiley

Lovely picture of the Nederlands Reefer Ed. We have a great collection of cargo ships coming and going through Dover now and we are getting pictures of most of them for the Sea News collection so all can enjoy.

Monday, 20 October 2014 - 07:12
Post 1159
  Ed Connell, Dover
Nederland Reefer at the DCT yesterday.

Monday, 20 October 2014 - 06:50
Post 1158
  Kevin Charles, Dover
A surprise second cruise ship call today! Both AIDAcara and AIDAsol have arrived in Dover this morning.

Monday, 20 October 2014 - 06:11
Post 1157
  ColetteB, Dover
Indeed MrB, it is tomorrow Monday 20th when the AIDACara is back in the Port of Dover for her last visit this year. I misread my own post 1100 Smiley

Terrific shots there of both Dover & Boulogne lifeboats in action albeit long range! Smiley
I hope it all turned out well

Sunday, 19 October 2014 - 19:22
Post 1156
  PaulB, Sea News, Dover.
LIFEBOAT SPECIAL - Featuring the Lifeboats of Dover and Boulogne.
These pictures were taken on Friday morning about 10 am. The first lifeboat is the Dover one and coming along behind is the Lifeboat from Boulogne. They were involved in very high speed action in roughish conditions with both the spray and the boats leaping into the air. But I guess the tough guys onboard these boats can handle whatever is thrown at them. Brilliant to see....the pictures are rather long range so a bit grainy but they hopefully show the action well . It did not appear to be an exercise ...we were waiting to see if there was any info coming through as to what was afoot.

* *

Colette no sign of the AIDA Cara today. I think we originally thought Monday...

Sunday, 19 October 2014 - 07:56
Post 1155
  ColetteB, Dover

Awesome skyline P&O photo for Stacey there, nature at its very best with a little helping hand from the photografter Smiley

Just to remind everyone that the last visit this year of the AIDACara is due in tomorrow morning, Sunday. She was last here in August. She will be at CT1, PoC. Lets hope for a beautiful morning like today Smiley
Get them cameras ready Guys Smiley

Saturday, 18 October 2014 - 14:38
Post 1154
  PaulB, Sea News, Dover.


The recent decision by the Government to screen for Ebola at certain major UK gateways is a direct response to the current crisis in West Africa. Whilst the Government says the risk to the UK is very low, the Port of Dover will support whatever measures the Government deems appropriate for the Port to ensure it remains a secure place for everyone travelling in and out of the UK.

Being one of the UK’s most important international gateways, we understand the need for vigilance. As with all matters relating to border security, we will continue to liaise closely with the responsible agencies, including UK Border Force and Public Health England in order to maintain the highest levels of security.

Saturday, 18 October 2014 - 08:02
Post 1153
  PaulB, Dover

This picture above was taken on Wednesday morning and shows the sun rising behind the P&O ship Spirit of France. This is definitely the season for dramatically colourful skies with nature itself doing all the work and putting on a fabulous light show. The picture is just a simple 'point and shoot' with the camera, and shows the scene exactly as was. A terrific sky for sure. We hope to see more dramatic skies in similar vein throughout the autumn and maybe even in winter.

This picture is specially for Stacey from the P&O Choir.. see post 1148 below page.Smiley

By the way everyone, don't forget the P&O FREE WINE offer is still in place for day-trippers. Smiley
See post 1092 for details. Post 1092 is now amazingly over on Page 4 already.

Nice pic there in the post below from Phil Smith. Well done Phil and also Howard.
Just wondering if Phil got the day right as that looks like Hermod which went down the channel on the Friday, see post 1140 further down page...or was there another monster mover..

Friday, 17 October 2014 - 06:25
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