Behind the Scenes | Drydock | Ireland
Ferries are pretty similar to cars, they all need maintenance and a spruce up periodically. When you get your car serviced, you bring it to your local garage but with something as large as a ferry, it needs to go to a specially modified and designed dry dock. In the early part this year, our ferries that sail between the UK and Ireland on the Irish Sea routes, needed a major overhaul so a schedule for all 7 ships to be serviced was planned. Come and take a look at what happened!
Stena Horizon & Superfast IIV Spruce
Stena Horizon which sails on the Cherbourg – Rosslare route was the first of our ferries to be refurbished this year. It sailed to the world famous Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast, yes indeed, the very shipyard where the Titanic was built and launched over 100 years ago. This shipyard has the largest graving dock in the world. Stena Horizon spent a total of two weeks in dry dock for maintenance work and a damn good repainting. Soon afterwards, just a few weeks, she was deployed on the Holyhead – Dublin Port route to replace Stena Superfast X and then, at at a later date, she replaced Stena Superfast VII and Stena Superfast VIII on the Cairnryan – Belfast route while these two ferries got their necessary maintenance work undertaken.
A very special meeting…
Above is a fantastic picture showing the very special meeting of Stena Superfast X and Stena Superfast VII when they arrived in Belfast on February 3rd for their dry docking. Stena Superfast VIII stayed for a total of 10 days in the Harland and Wolff Shipyard in Belfast. Her sister vessel, Stena Superfast VII took over her duties during the dry dock period.
Once all the Stena Superfast vessels had their maintenance and spruce up completed, it was the turn of Stena Adventurer and Stena Europe. The last remaining vessels on the Irish Sea routes, Stena Lagan and Stena Mersey already had their work done at the beginning of the year. They are serviced more regularly because they are mainly freight carrying vessels.
Photo: Scott Mackey