Sunday 15 September 2019

No mention of Rosslare as 'majestic' ship sails in

Huge: The €150m WB Yeats arrives at Dublin Port. It can accommodate 1,800 passengers.
Huge: The €150m WB Yeats arrives at Dublin Port. It can accommodate 1,800 passengers.

John Mulligan and Pol O Conghaile

The arrival of Irish Ferries' new €150m WB Yeats vessel at Dublin Port was cloaked in controversy, coming just days after the likely cancellation of routes from Rosslare to France.

In a press heralding the "majestic" new vessel's arrival, Irish Ferries made no mention of the Rosslare controversy.

Nor did it mention the new ferry's long delay - a setback caused by what German shipbuilder Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft des-cribed this summer as "delays in the delivery of interior components for public areas and on the electrical system installation in the hull and deckhouse".

The new ship has 3km of vehicle lanes and can accommodate 1,800 passengers. It has 440 cabins and the 51,388 tonne vessel will sail four times a week between Dublin and France from March to September.

But meanwhile the company has confirmed it is "unlikely" to sail between Rosslare and France next year, which sparked shock throughout the southeast.

Dublin Port said no incentives had been offered to Irish Ferries to move its service from Rosslare, and that all operators at the capital's port paid the same fees.

Dublin City Council said that while it liaised with Dublin Port from time to time on operational issues, there had been no specific discussions between them in relation to the WB Yeats being deployed at Dublin.

Hauliers have warned that arrival and departure times of ferries in Dublin should be staggered so as not to clog up the gateway at peak times.

Cyril McGuinness, the chairman of the Dublin branch of the Irish Road Haulage Association, said that Dublin Port was effective at dispersing traffic, but there cpi;d be pressure at peak times.

"If sailings are staggered in the morning and evening, that would be helpful," he said.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News