Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Featuring all the ships that come and go and work at the Port of Dover ..
... with further coverage of the surrounding ports.

Port of Dover: Brexit Resilience 6123
DFDS: For apprentice information see 6125

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Post 6068
  Sea News, Dover
You can certainly guess what this looks like ..yes another migrant situation, a crises in the making. Yours truly spotted the people waving frantically from the dinghy ( just one waving in the shot above but all were waving moments before ) and what would anyone think. In the flash of a moment I approached the window for a closer look and spotted the dark-coloured RIB below. The guys in the dinghy were waving to this...trying to attract attention.

Gazing at it all through the zoom lens and wondering who to call in the developing emergency...I quickly realised then in a further moment, that it appeared to be just a training exercise. The frantic feeling dispersed and the follow-up pictures were taken....

These are zoomed in pictures, with the naked eye from afar it all looks very different.
Below the RIB approaches the dinghy and in shot 4 you can just see the tow-rope attached as they all head back to shore. Clearly a rescue simulation... or indeed did the dinghy genuinely break down...?


Monday, 4 February 2019 - 05:10
Post 6067
  Sea News, Dover

The pictures above were taken just a couple of days ago. They are fairly long range shots and show the HM Coastguard helicopter slowly approaching the rear of one of the Border Force cutters...either Vigilant or Searcher...and hovering in harmony for quite a while as they continue to move forward. As mentioned this took place a good distance out in the Channel. It may have been an exercise as there was no subsequent news story of note.

Here's a shot below, from a former time, of the same helicopter up very close. Right alongside the 'observation tower'. Yes this was taken a while back but shows the helicopter in detail right alongside us here....they were searching the waters edge one late evening.

And now for another kind of flying machine. The Cormorant.
Yours truly spotted these two earlier this week, they were stuck together like glue. There must be a hint of 'spring in the air' although you wouldn't particularly notice it down here at that same waters edge.. so chilly, good to see them though. They might be young ones.. wildlife not my speciality alas.

The Cormorants are usually solitary mean feeding machines...like this guy below..Smiley


Sunday, 3 February 2019 - 07:45
Post 6066
  Sea News, Dover
Frivolity for the Weekend

Yours truly couldnt resist using this photograph. Yes there we are...our Prime Minister Therese May speaking in one of those long interminable debates on Brexit the other day. To either side of her, while the not-so-scintillating words spew forth, the PM's high profile cabinet colleagues have long since dropped off. Yes the soothing nature of all things Brexit has seen them drift off to the land of nod, no doubt dreaming of that time of sunny uplands pre Brexit. Of course the PR spinning whips would say that the effervescent fellows were merely contemplatively concentrating with relaxed eyelids.

The cabinet ministers are Lidington and Hammond...
pictured by myself here while testing the camera.
Do we have faith in any of them saving us from landlocked gridlock in South Kent ?
Yours truly's last 2 trips to France...six hours in the car, 3 hours in France...and I only went to Calais. Now its true I was unlucky with the days I picked .. but... could that end up being the norm?

From Channel Four

The head of the Port of Dover says the government has given no “firm direction” on technology for additional security checks, in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Doug Bannister, the new Chief Exec of Europe’s busiest ferry port, told Channel 4 News: “We haven’t got any physical comfort. We haven’t seen increased manpower, we haven’t seen any new systems or processes.

“For us, the most important thing is what are the physical checks on the dock. If those are minimal, then we can maintain operations. If a hard border therefore means that we have to do physical checks on the docks within our estate, then that is going to create a lot of problems for us.”

Doug Bannister says: “It does seem to me to be a very huge task to get it all in, tested and operational before the 29th of March. It comes down to how they want to treat the border."


Much progress has been made with the beach reworkings..this is the latest pic below. The boulders have been redone into neatness and attractiveness once more...

.... this is how they were previously..a further few days ago ( have used this pic below before )

Since that beach pic 1 taken 2 days ago, things have been smoothed out and the heavy metal have departed the scene. Some sand dunes remain, perhaps for further use in due course.

Thanks Del, yes dazzling nature at its best.
Yes we currently have quite a few stories re Brexit/Dover...not sure if I've seen the i newspaper one.


Saturday, 2 February 2019 - 06:40
Post 6065
  Del Styan, Norwich
Lovely shots across the Channel - the Hotel de Ville very obvious. It still amazes me you can take pics of Calais from your viewpoint. Did you see the article on Dover in the i newspaper today?

Friday, 1 February 2019 - 23:03
Post 6064
  Sea News, Dover
Sun Rising over Calais.
Looking across towards Calais yesterday morning (Thursday) there were some stunning visuals as the sun rose spectacularly into an orange red sky. Visibility was good for a change and the camera did the necessary. These pictures are totally natural..bog standard shots with no fakery. Nature doesn't need help when it wants to put on a show. You can see the various shipping movements and indeed the spires of Calais itself...notably Notre Dame Church and the Hotel de Ville ( Town Hall ).. these structures are beauties in their own right.

The second picture below is more or less the same, save for the interjection of our Border Force. Yes unseen by yours truly the Border Force cutter ( Vigilant or Searcher ) crept into the image as the camera rattled away on a series of shots. A welcome addition to the picture.

Del its still dark as I write here but the streets just look wet rather than white. We were hit by sleet rather than snow so nothing to shout about here on the seafront. Although in recent days we ourselves here on the seafront and port's edge had nothing much by way of snow ... however cars are occasionally seen driving around covered in the stuff...so there must be some fairly close by.
Its cold though down here at the waters edge...the oul timbers are a shiverin' …Smiley


Friday, 1 February 2019 - 05:55
Post 6063
  Del Styan, Norwich
A light dusting of snow up here in Norfolk, I hope you have some more than us tomorrow.
(I love snow!) Sorry if that disrupts things.

Thursday, 31 January 2019 - 22:55
Post 6062
  Sea News, Dover
Border Force Speedwell returning to the Port of Dover on Tuesday morning...

As you can see Speedwell was experiencing some rough conditions there. We had choppy waters.
Out there at the same time as Border Force Speedwell, in roughly the same area, was a Border Force cutter...either Vigilant or Searcher ( it wasn't showing on AIS )...and the Royal Navy in the current shape of HMS Enterprise. So a busy well defended well monitored stretch of immediate water. Some might say this is possibly expensive overkill...but who knows for sure....Home Secretary Javid has his finger on the pulse!!


Thursday, 31 January 2019 - 06:26
Post 6061
  Sea News, Dover
As promised .. some further pictures now of Bulknes.
Reversing out above there. Yours truly thought Bulknes was about to leave port...but then unexpectedly she began to move forward in the pix below...although even then it was a surprise to see her go over to the new terminal. See Patrick's post below 6056. It took yours truly by surprise for sure, as I took my eye of it temporarily, planning to get pictures as she exited the port some minutes later...which of course didn't happen on the day.

The following day below...yesterday Tuesday in fact, and she moves away....
heading to Norway during a blazing sunrise...time of pic 07.38.

As mentioned above see 6056 also see 6057.


Wednesday, 30 January 2019 - 06:59
Post 6060
  Sea News, Dover

An extra picture there to enjoy of the magnificent Norwegian tall sailing ship...Statsraad Lehmkuhl...that's a tricky one to get right spelling-wise. We are currently featuring the same ship at the top of page but obviously that pic wont stay there forever...so good to have this extra one in the files. Pictured at the weekend when she came in close to shore.
The guys fishing there on Admiralty Pier are carrying on regardless .. hardly giving her a glance.

"Statsraad Lehmkuhl is a three-masted barque rigged sail training ship built in 1914, the vessel is owned and operated by the Statsraad Lehmkuhl Foundation. It is based in Bergen, Norway and contracted out for various purposes, including serving as a school ship for the Royal Norwegian Navy." ...from Wikipedia .


Tuesday, 29 January 2019 - 17:06
Post 6059
  Sea News, Dover
Bulknes has now moved away.
Will have those extra pictures in the morning. PB.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019 - 08:29
Post 6058
  brian dixon, dover
the name of the warship echos the names of kirk and picard. lol beam me up scoty.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019 - 05:53
Post 6057
  Sea News, Dover

That's a picture above there of Bulknes very early yesterday morning. You can just see her discharging her cargo of sand there...time of picture 06.50. Took it while it was still fairly dark to try and capture the glowing lights and the exciting activity. Realised afterwards that we have a similar picture in the system from a previous trip. We have an evening pic below as well, taken after she had moved over to the new cargo terminal...see also Patrick's pictures below in post 6056.

Picture 2 here shows HMS Enterprise in the distance as we look across the Bulknes long conveying arm mid morning yesterday.

As mentioned, here we have Bulknes again below...evening-time at the new cargo terminal. Exciting times!

Cracking collection below Patrick. You got a bit of a scoop there with Bulknes at the new terminal. Great stuff Patrick...Smiley
Brian Smiley

Have some extra pictures of Bulknes as she moved across to the new terminal...will catch up with those in due course.
She is still in Port at the time of writing.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019 - 04:55
Post 6056
  Patrick, Marine Parade
'BULKNES', the self discharging bulk carrier that has graced our Port with sister ships on a number of earlier occasions discharging dark aggregate into the DWDR area, arrived this morning at the new Berth 'C'. Having partly discharged she moved for the first time to complete operations onto Berth 'A' alongside the RCT ('Banana Shed'). First time I have seen a vessel on that berth. Progress continues apace.

Monday, 28 January 2019 - 17:01
Post 6055
  brian dixon, dover
at least they got a safer ride back, and in the warm to.

Monday, 28 January 2019 - 12:56
Post 6054
  Sea News, Dover
Border Force Vigilant
A couple of pictures above there of Border Force Vigilant just after arriving into Port late last week. It had just begun snowing at the time of pictures...so twas a cold oul day for sure. A RIB dropped suddenly out of the rear of the vessel and and began to move away...heading to the inner harbour. The heavy Channel patrolling goes on, by both Border Force and the Royal Navy.

Below and we have some more pictures of the current 'organised turmoil' on the legendary Dover Beach. The poet Mathew Arnold, who wrote that famous poem, would hardly recognise it now. But fear not Matthew..don't swivel...it will return to normal eventually, we are assured.

"Listen! you hear the grating roar
Of pebbles which the waves draw back, and fling..."
Plenty of pebbles here for flinging...

Very interesting collection below there from Mike. Keeping us up to speed with the general workings and the inner goings on. Great stuff again Mike !Smiley

Patrick yes chilly times indeed. Brave girl. Nice enjoyable shots there - so well done with those. Dont know about yourself but yours truly is tending to be anchored to the warm sofa at the moment...SmileySmiley

Del you will probably be having some more wintry windy weather up there in Norfolk today...you might be needing that ol sou'wester...SmileySmiley

Ah yes indeed Brian, it could always be worse I suppose...Smiley


Monday, 28 January 2019 - 06:11
Post 6053
  Mike J., Dover

A couple of views of the new lock, a pity that the temporary bridge obscures the new bridge’s deck.

TOPLOADER has shifted into the Wellington Dock [diving work finished ?] & the TOPLIFT was on the Tidal Basin pontoon on Sundsy.
Dunno whether she’s about to sail elsewhere or start working in Dover.

Self-discharger BULKNES [post 5843] should arrive in the wee small hours of Monday morning.

Monday, 28 January 2019 - 00:57
Post 6052
  Del Styan, Norwich
Hope the weather treats you kindly. I think the winds and rain has finally left us up here in Norfolk. Hope the big people carrier vehicles on the sea front don't topple over!

Sunday, 27 January 2019 - 23:17
Post 6051
  Patrick, Marine Parade
Shiver me timbers me hearties. Someone not the least bit worried about this cold windy winter weather in the harbour.
Easy peasy on the paddle board just like A B C. Love the hat!

Sunday, 27 January 2019 - 23:12
Post 6050
  brian dixon, dover
pb, re the boat people nothing harsh about it,sending them back to franc is a soft option.could have sent them back to iran or where ever they come from, now that's harsh.

Sunday, 27 January 2019 - 12:57
Post 6049
  Sea News, Dover

HMS Enterprise turns about in the distance, continuing her gentle patrolling up and down the coast here...while in the foreground the Dover Western Docks Redevelopment workers work on...

HMS Enterprise working away tirelessly above there as you can see. Meanwhile....From MSN yesterday:

"Home Secretary Sajid Javid has signed a new deal with his French counterpart to return migrants who illegally cross the Channel back to France.

The agreement saw the first handful of migrants returned yesterday and is part of a new action plan which is backed by £6m extra money from the UK government. It was announced yesterday after the Home Secretary met French interior minister Christophe Castaner in London.

The French have agreed they will take back migrants who have been fingerprinted on the so-called Eurodac database. This enables immigration officers to establish if they have already applied for asylum in an EU country or illegally transited through other EU states."


That new plan seems a tad harsh. These unfortunates, sometimes with children in tow, grimly risk their lives coming across the choppy waters in flimsy craft in the dead of night.. only to be unsympathetically sent back.

The need for a deterrent is understandable but...

Yesterday mid morning saw the departure once again of our regular friend the Maersk Connector. How can you miss a ship that big moving off?? well yours truly almost did...but saw it across the breakwater at the last minute. And speaking of the breakwater, lots of cormorants on there in the foreground as you can see, and lots of gulls on the wing.
The Maersk Connector, looking magnificent, was off to Rotterdam.
The Maersk Connector.

Thanks Del - yes lucky to get the pix, the recent improvement in visibility led to the opportunity
...and of course yours truly got the tugboats and the Border Force to co-operate with the images...Smiley !!

Its going to be a very windy day out there...veering between Gale Force 8 and Severe Gale 9 along the Channel.
So sayeth the Shipping Forecast.
Hold on to yer hat!


Sunday, 27 January 2019 - 06:04
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