Monday, 28 September 2020

The Shape of Things to Come....

Trucks to the left of us...trucks to the right of us...into the Valley of Dover drove the 7,000 ..

DFDS and the Dover7 sunrise.

Sea Pictures from DOVER ....

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Post 6836
  Mike J., Dover

Webcam - I’ve just noticed that the webcam at the Watersports Centre has been upgraded.

Perhaps you know of it already, but if not, well worth a look.

The camera now pans slowly between the Castle & the shore end of the new Marina Pier, zooming at times & giving a better view of the berthed ferries than the original camera as well as vessels using the Eastern Entrance.
Seems a little jerky mid-afternoon Monday, maybe due to the current high winds.

Partly-obstructed views of cruise ships on CT2 & coasters on WD4 should be visible when they are in port,
Wish I‘d been aware of it when SCARLET LADY was alongside.

To view the webcam just Google ‘SKYLINE WEBCAMS DOVER BEACH’

Or put ‘http’ in front of -


Monday, 24 February 2020 - 16:08
Post 6835
  Sea News, Dover

Paint the town Red for the Scarlet Lady: Just a few pictures this morning while we regroup...we will have yet more Firework pictures (6831) and hopefully some shots of the ship departing. The great ship came in the dark and left in the dark...always a pity camera-wise. However we tried some shots as she left last night at 11pm...will examine those to see if useable. The great and massive 110,000 ton ship came across the harbour to glide out through the eastern exit...quite a monster, quite a sight.

The fireworks went off early last night. They were scheduled for 6.30pm but for some reason not known to man nor beast they exploded into life at 6.15...catching hundreds out who were still arriving to an already packed seafront. One of the biggest seafront crowd attractions in recent times and yours truly has seen a few...anyway more on that later...

Top shot ..the sky turns red to greet the Scarlet can see the right side of the funnel catching the red sky...
and last night the Castle turned red...well I never... all for the Scarlet Lady.
Dover Castle turns red...

Thanks to Vic below for the in-depth comments Smiley

Thanks to Del too as ever Smiley


Monday, 24 February 2020 - 07:14
Post 6834
  matcham, Dover
Also if one of them goes over onto its side, that will make half of its life boats no good,and if you notice they are all on the same deck that is not good planing, because how do the public get to them if they are ten decks above them .what is the first thing you must not use if the ship went over are the lifts. you need to have them on all decks the public must have more drill before the ships move off the key side .But just may I should not put this on the sea news page, but the public need to be a where of going on big ships. But back now to the port of Dover and the very good photos on this page of the ships that use the port well done.

Monday, 24 February 2020 - 06:13
Post 6833
  Del Styan, Norwich
Thanks for the pics of the latest Branson venture. But I also agree with Vic;s comments. These super high ships do look - to a complete amateur - as highly unstable. But hell - what do I know!

Sunday, 23 February 2020 - 23:15
Post 6832
  matcham, Dover
yes we are seeing some very big and good looking ships using our port, but as a welder spend alot of his working life welding on ships and Riveting I am getting worred that the big cruise ships are getting to high and top heavy it will only need a very big wave hit one on the side and we could see it go over,most of the real big ships now are welded and not rivet ,and all welds it does not matter now good your weld is,there is a breaking point on all welds, now it will only need to be a small break one you cannot even see by your eye but at some point in time the whole weld will break ,sorry to talk like this but again I think the time has come to stop building so much above the water line ,rembering they do have very good life boats around of the outside of them .but alot of the public that go s on a cruise are older my age in their 70s or more are not so fit and they will not move at the rate you will need to ,get on deck etc. So are the builders thinking about this or how many they get on to make more money they carrie now well over 2000 members of the public at all ages ,just think if did go over on to its side ,and once that happens it will not take long to turn right over.Again sorry to talk like this but as person who many years on ship repairs I had to say it.Thank you.

Sunday, 23 February 2020 - 20:22
Post 6831
  Sea News, Dover
And now....The Fireworks!
Explosive display for the Scarlet Lady. Be bedazzled... whoosh! bang! wallop!

A cracking display for sure. very colourful, very explosive...Mike mentioned the seagulls being shocked from their pic 2 you can just make them out...airborne frenzy. The display itself was fantastic. A great crowd came down to the seafront to enjoy it all as you can see in the pic below. Normally it would be quite dark and quiet at 10pm Friday on the seafront...but not this time as you can see below...



More fireworks scheduled for tonight at 6.30pm

Sunday, 23 February 2020 - 07:18
Post 6830
  Sea News, Dover
Scarlet Lady: Postcard from the Edge

The Scarlet Lady enjoyed a very spectacular firework display last night...hopefully we will have more on that soon, once the pictures are examined, a great crowd turned up on a blustery night. But there she is above yesterday morning when there was a brief sliver of sunlight shining through...

A striking ship breaking the mould, some traditionalists are cautious, unsure,...but its innovative and daring and will catch the eye of the cruise passenger of the future.

But back to basics now, back to the fundamentals of daily life,
and we see Whitdawn arriving in the port a couple of days ago to supply bunkering services to the Spirit of Britain..

In the first two pictures yours truly could have swore the ship was red...but once out of the blinding sunlight it turned blue ... as you can see in shot 3.

Another couple here of the unfinished coverage the other day.
First up another shot of EEMS Cobalt..see the earlier post too 6823,
and then another one of the lingering JPO Scorpius.

A further fascinating collection re his Scarlet Lady adventure from Mike DONT MISS THOSE Smiley

Also see Andrew Wood's Scarlet Lady Video...the link is at top of page. Nice work Andrew Smiley

Many thanks also to Patrick for capturing the 'AHOY' image...great stuff!Smiley

Many thanks Jan T...glad you enjoyed the fascinating pictures... great work by the team. Hope you enjoyed the fireworks from up there on the hill.Smiley

More fireworks sunday at 6.30PM...they are clearly very popular.


Saturday, 22 February 2020 - 07:05
Post 6829
  Mike J., Dover

A few more from Thursday's DOVER EXPLORER trip.

The unusual, almost vertical bow - quite a change from the raked bow, sometimes 'over the top' on some modern cruise ships.
However quite understandable as Virgin set out to design a 'unique' looking ship & certainly succeeded.

Tender, for ferrying passengers to & fro in anchorage ports & conventional lifeboat.


DHB media in attendance.

Returning down the Wick

Spectacular fireworks, from the end of the much-missed Prince of Wales Pier, on Friday night.
Unsurprisingly 'Virgin Red' featured strongly in the fireworks colours, with powerful red lights on the pier during the display.

I was up on Langdon Cliffs & as the fireworks started I've never seen so many gulls, like a densely packed shoal of fish, lit by the dock lights, heading east with much panic-stricken squawking.

If you missed the display there will be a second one at 1830 Sunday evening shortly before the SCARLET LADY sails for Liverpool.

Saturday, 22 February 2020 - 03:13
Post 6828
  Jan T, Dover
Some very impressive pictures of the SCARLET LADY Mike J certainly is a different looking ship, and gosh yes Patrick they didn't want us to miss it even at night. Even from up here on the hill.

Friday, 21 February 2020 - 09:23
Post 6827
  Mike J., Dover

Virgin’s first cruise ship the SCARLET LADY arrived Dover in the predawn darkness on Thursday morning after her six day voyage from her builders yard in Genoa.

She'll be in port until Sunday evenng, sailing after the second firework display at 1830
Next stop Liverpool to show the Virgin flag for a few days before heading for Miami & her first cruise & is unlikely to return to Europe for a while as he will be ‘home-ported’ in Miami for Caribbean cruises.

Her unexpected early arrival had foiled plans to meet her with s flotilla of small craft as met the SPIRIT OF DISCOVERY last year [posts 6368/69] but despite the gale conditions, with force 9 in the forecast, Dover Sea Safari’s DOVER EXPLORER set off at about 1000 with an almost full load of passengers, well bundled up against the cold.

We quickly got cold & almost as quickly got extremely wet after leaving the Wick Channel, passing the PACIFIC REEFER on WD5 & entered the Outer Harbour, heading for Cruise-2 & the SCARLET LADY.

Rain was intermittent & squalls were running thru almost continuously whipping the tops of the waves & often reducing visibility.

Earlier in the day the DAUNTLESS had been ‘pushing up’ on the SCARLET LADY, holding her up against the quay & taking some of the strain off her mooring ropes, but by the time we arrived the DAUNTLESS had gone off to help the CALAIS SEAWAYS who was having trouble docking & the SCARLET LADY was holding herself in position, using her bow thrusts.

We covered the impressive [some would say unattractive] ship from all possible angles with a momentary improvement in the light when we were shooting the bows area.

Apologies for the raindrops/spray on the lens.

The SCARLET LADY looks particularly strange from the blunt end, hardly looking shiplike at all.

There are certainly some very odd-looking modern cruise ships about, but at least she didn’t seem to have the full onboard funfair on the top deck that some American cruise ships are blessed with.

But impressive she certainly is & I’m sure that we wish Virgin the best of luck with the SCARLET LADY & the three more ships that they are building.
Watch for the arrival of Mr.Branson by helicopter, ETA unknown.

After we’d taken our fill of photography we returned to the Tidal Basin, bedraggled but pleased with an exhilarating ‘voyage’
Everyone enjoyed themselves with the only casualty being my favourite woolly hat which was last seen heading off at speed in the direction of France.

Thanks are due to Andy the coxn of DOVER EXPLORER & his two crew members.

Going out in a small boat is really the only way in the new DWDR era that you can get a decent close-up view of a berthed cruise ship now that the Prince of Wales pier is permanently closed & the Admiralty Pier not yet re-opened to the public.
The new marina pier gives a much inferior cluttered view of the cruise ship berths, altho’ excellent views to the east.


Friday, 21 February 2020 - 01:36
Post 6826
  Patrick, Marine Parade
With the advent of evening light the 'SCARLET LADY' wanted to attract our attention with some well placed cabin lighting aaaaaaah ......... me hearties

Thursday, 20 February 2020 - 22:43
Post 6825
  Sea News , Dover
Scarlet Lady once the day brightens up...
Zooming in below...

See also todays previous posts below.
See also post 6289 to see earlier Scarlet Lady press release.

EXTRA:Port of Dover Twitter...
Firework celebrations for @VirginVoyages Scarlet Lady's inaugural port of call @Port_of_Dover will be held on Friday 21st February @ 10.00pm and Sunday 23rd February @ 6.30pm, please come down to the seafront to witness what promises to be two spectacular displays!

Thursday, 20 February 2020 - 08:03
Post 6824
  Sea News, Dover

First shot there of Virgin's all new Scarlet Lady...she came in ahead of schedule as I understand it...unfortunately in the dark. Presumably ahead of schedule due to the forecasted spell of rough weather, which is due shortly... time of pic above 06.40. Brightened the image up a the foreground, somewhat over-shadowed, in more ways than one, is general cargo ship Norman.
See also todays earlier post below.

Thursday, 20 February 2020 - 07:23
Post 6823
  Sea News, Dover
Some pictures now of general cargo ship EEMS Cobalt approaching the Port of Dover on Tuesday...Tuesday mid-morning in fact. Time of first shot 11.02. The ship went over to WD5 as WD4 was and still is occupied by Norman. Cobalt left last night (Thursday) in the pitch darkness, and it was pitch, round about 7PM as Pacific Reefer was due. See the two crew guys below taking in the view....

A short time after the EEMS Cobalt pictures...the ship below arrived just off JPO Scorpius. A couple of pictures to enjoy below, we are presuming it was for a pilot embark.

See the post below re the expected new arrival today.
Much of the Admiralty Pier has a very welcoming array of red lights along its cruise-end entirety. Very welcoming.
More detail at top of post below...


Thursday, 20 February 2020 - 06:03
Post 6822
  Sea News, Dover
EXTRA: From the Port of Dover's Twitter account...

Firework celebrations for @VirginVoyages Scarlet Lady's inaugural port of call @Port_of_Dover will be held on Friday 21st February @ 10.00pm and Sunday 23rd February @ 6.30pm, please come down to the seafront to witness what promises to be two spectacular displays!

We believe the ship is due to arrive tomorrow.

* *

You will remember that Norman was in the port recently, she arrived at the grain pier WD4, moved to WD5 the cargo terminal...presumably the move was rough weather related. Then she left the Port altogether to weather Storm Dennis at a Margate anchorage. On Monday she returned to complete her business here in Dover. These pictures show her wild and woolly weather just off the breakwater on Monday around midday...

And...phew! .. made it... ! Smiley

The vessel is still in Port at the grain pier WD4....working away.

Also..previously in Port at the same time but now left...was Schweiz Reefer, and here she is below at 6am Monday morning.

Schweiz Reefer came in the dark and left in the dark ( for Vlissingen ) so we long for brighter lengthier days...

ps: pictures of EEMS Cobalt arriving scheduled next .. plus...

Wednesday, 19 February 2020 - 05:56
Post 6821
  Sea News, Dover

DFDS reveals NEW Relax Lounge as part of a £3.9m refit investment

Relax Lounge

Premium Lounge

DFDS' Dunkerque Seaways will be the first of the three ships on the Dover to Dunkirk route to reveal a number of new looks as part of a £3.9m investment.

DFDS understands that in a busy world, with many customers travelling long distances, the chance to relax in comfort whilst travelling is welcome. With that in mind from Monday 17th February, passengers looking for peace and quiet can enjoy the new Relax Lounge. The lounge boasts luxury reclining chairs built into an airline style pod for extra privacy, complimented by soft lighting for the perfect stress-free environment. Prices depend on availability and start from £6 per person each way. Guests of the Relax Lounge will also receive a complimentary Rituals Karma set*. Children under 16 are not permitted into the Relax Lounge.

The ships’ Premium Lounge areas have also been fully refurbished with comfortable lounge furniture and modern décor to provide the luxurious and peaceful surroundings demanded by the modern traveller. This private lounge is open 24 hours a day and is available for all ages from £12 per person each way. Passengers can enjoy complimentary glass of Prosecco, premium snacks and pastries, hot and cold refreshments and hot food available from the Premium Lounge menu.

With the success of the Horizon restaurant, a pizza, pasta, salad concept on the Dover to Calais routes, the refit also includes this restaurant being installed on all three ships on the Dover to Dunkirk route. Here guests can enjoy a selection of freshly cooked, made to order pizzas, pasta dishes and healthy salads. Passengers can place their order, take a buzzer with them to their table and collect their meals when called.

Passengers will also benefit from new bathroom facilities throughout the ship and can now enjoy watching a spot of television in the Lighthouse Café, with newly installed TVs as an additional feature.

Steve Newbery, Onboard Commercial Director for BU Short Routes and Passenger at DFDS said: "This is a very exciting refit programme and continues on from last year’s successes with our Lighthouse Café and demonstrates our commitment to improving the passenger experience on board our DFDS ferries.

"We believe the improvements will help our passengers increase their sense of relaxation and give them the best possible start to their onward journeys. Many of the changes are in response to ideas and suggestions from our customers, so I am looking forward to the feedback from our passengers."


Horizons Restaurant

* *

Wow! great lounge development above there on the DFDS ships...have to try some of that!
Great encouragement for us to get out there.. and with a little touch of luxury...well... Smiley

Its lovely to cross the channel in the mornings when the sky looks like this below...picture taken in between the recent storms.

English Channel sunrise.



Tuesday, 18 February 2020 - 07:01
Post 6820
  Sea News, Dover

Protecting our Marine Environment

With our area’s role as a gateway of international maritime trade, it could be easy to forget that it is also home to one of the most special and famous marine sites around, the Goodwin Sands.

The Goodwin Sands SOS group has done a fantastic job of ensuring we don’t forget – and that we cherish this special habitat. The unusual sandbank, lying only a few short miles from Deal, is undoubtedly a site worthy of protection.

It is the last resting place of airmen whose battles raged over our skies, as well as light-vessel men who perished in 1954 when their boat, a type of lighthouse, wrenched free from its moorings. We will never forget their bravery and sacrifice. We shouldn’t forget their final resting place either.

The Sands also contain a diverse range of sea life. Blue mussels, ross worms, shellfish, the protected Thornback Ray all make the most of the rare sand-on-chalk platform in the middle of the sea. It contains special rest and relax areas for Grey Seals, and much more besides.

The Sands have a special place in our own cultural history – stories abound of Deal residents in years past rescuing, or thieving, from people and boats shipwrecked in and near the sands. From Nelson’s fleet to the modern day, it is part of a natural area of shelter from the sea’s stormiest heights.

It’s for these reasons that I am trying to secure better environmental protections for special marine sites. So that they can have similar protections to special sites on land. Just last year, the Goodwin Sands was designated a marine conservation zone. That gives it protection most similar to a green belt designation on land – a ‘blue belt’ equivalent.

That’s a great start and I want to go further, to strengthen that protection. I want to see a new class of ‘special marine interest’ sites created with Goodwin Sands at the top of the list. The new classification would provide similar protections to Sites of Special Scientific Interest on land – with a much higher threshold for commercial activities like aggregates extraction.

I recently met with the Environment Secretary to discuss the idea – and I will keep working with them and marine-minded colleagues in the months ahead to take it forward. I also met with the Goodwin Sands SOS group. I will be seeking further engagement with Government agencies around the dredging work that is already planned, so that it can be approached as sensitively and sensibly as may be possible.

Our marine environment is so important – especially to coastal communities like ours. Whether it’s trade, tourism, or a simple day out with the family, the sea is in the heartbeat of our community.

We cannot take it for granted. We must ensure it is protected for every person and every generation – so that where we live continues to remain such a special corner of our nation.

Natalie Elphicke MP Dover and Deal

This week Natalie called for the Government to be ready at the border so the port can "grow and prosper" after Brexit. This amid HMG suggestions the frictionless trade might not be quite as frictionless as once mooted...

My thanks to Natalie Elphicke for the above. Smiley

* *

Some rough oul pictures from yesterday. Storm Dennis didn't hit us quite as hard in Dover as elsewhere but it was a grim old period nonetheless with rain drizzle and of course high wind..

Manoeuvring the Pride of Canterbury into Dover 9: Visibility was poor taking these pictures yesterday morning. Dennis wasn't quite as 'visual' as Ciara a few days back...some tug work photographed here. Below roughly an hour later than the ones above at 09.59 .... working to send Delft Seaways on her way.

Huge thanks to Mike for his central main post on Ed Connell 6814.
Thanks also to Brian and Jan for the acknowledgments.



Monday, 17 February 2020 - 04:54
Post 6819
  JanT , Dover
Sorry to hear the sad news about Ed, who captured many pictures out there in the channel for seanews.

Sunday, 16 February 2020 - 08:09
Post 6818
  Sea News, Dover
I am very sorry to hear the sad news about Ed Connell, he was a grand guy and I have known him through my forum days for years. He always supplied us on Sea News with great and welcome pictures from the Dover Straits and you can see in his final post 5314 that he regarded himself as our 'dover straits correspondent'. But of course he was so much more.

We enjoyed some great and fascinating pictures from his seagoing positioning and always missed his input after he left.

Our thoughts are with his wife Chris and family.

* *

This is what I said when he told us he was leaving... from April 2018 post 5316.

Ah gosh Ed I am sorry to hear that our famous nautical man on the dover straits has made his last post for us here on Sea News. You have been a great correspondent with excellent news items and excellent pictures. We have known each other for years right through the old forum days and its all been great fun plus. I hope your medical treatment goes very well and I bet the team on the Delft Seaways and formerly the Dover Seaways were all sorry to see you go. Yes keep looking in and we will do our best to entertain you.



Sunday, 16 February 2020 - 06:40
Post 6817
  brian dixon, dover
a report of the missing man is on the forum

Saturday, 15 February 2020 - 14:27
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