Seafrance Nord Pas de Calais Freight Ferry, Western Entrance, Dover Harbour, Kent, UK

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Comments (5)

John Latter on July 17, 2010

The Seafrance Nord Pas de Calais freight ferry entering the Western Entrance of Dover Harbour from the English Channel at 4.59 pm on Thursday, 1st of July, 2010.

The Western Entrance lies between the Admiralty Pier on the right and the Southern Breakwater on the left (the lighthouse, currently undergoing maintainance, is the Dover Breakwater West End Light).

The photo, best viewed in a larger size, was taken from the public walkway above Cruise Terminal 3 (see the MS Minerva photo) of the Admiralty Pier, Western Docks.

I was at this location primarily to take photos of the Waasland Sea Barge and the Gaverland Sea Barge who were in the third week of a 10-12 week project to remove the wreck of the Spanish Prince. The Spanish Prince (ex-Knight Bachelor) was scuttled as a blockship in early 1915 during the First World War (especially see the wreck site and detailed multi-beam sonar image photos).

A secondary reason for being here was to photograph the MV Braemar leaving Dover Harbour at the start of a 7-night "Norwegian Summer" cruise. To the left of the base of the lighthouse in the above photo you can see the red-topped white superstructure of the Pride of Canterbury cross-channel ferry. This P&O ferry is also in the background of the MV Braemar photo.

All large ships usually enter the harbour through the Eastern Entrance (between the Eastern Arm and Southern Breakwater) and so I was taken by surprise when someone yelled, "She's coming in!".

I looked up to see the Seafrance Nord Pas de Calais hurtling through the Western Entrance and had no time at all to ask the angler next to me to move the trace of mackerel feathers which can be seen hanging down the right-hand side of the photo. Nor did I have time to change the charity shop-bought zoom lens I was using to photograph the barges with for my "better" one - but such is the reality of life!

The SeaFrance Nord Pas-de-Calais, rather obviously owned by Seafrance, was built in 1987 as the Nord Pas-de-Calais train ferry for service between Dover Western Docks and Dunkerque Ouest (West Dunkirk). Following the opening of the Channel Tunnel and the ending of the Sealink pooling agreement she transferred to SeaFrance, renamed SeaFrance Nord Pas-de-Calais, and operates as a freight only vessel between Calais and Dover (1). It can accomodate 85 lorries (2).

Ship's details (2) (3):

Length: 160 m

Breadth: 23 m

Draught: 6 m

Height: 40 m

Number of decks: 10

Trial speed: 24 knots

Service speed: 21,5 knots

Propulsion : 2 Sulzer engines 16 ZA V 40 ; 2 thrusters

Engine output: 2 x 9016 kW

Shipyard: 1987, Normed Shipyard, Dunkerque

Classification: BV (Bureau Véritas)

Ship registration: France

Call Sign: FNBN

IMO: 8512152

MMSI: 227011500

Click to see all Ferry (related tags: Boats, Cruise Ships, Ships) and Lighthouse photos..

(1) Wikipedia entry for SeaFrance (2) Official Seafrance Nord Pas de Calais webpage (3) Marinetraffic entry for Seafrance NPC

John Latter / Jorolat

Dover Blog: The Psychology of a Small Town

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John Latter on February 23, 2013

When in range of AIS, the vessel's current position is shown at:

MS Seafrance Nord Pas de Calais Ferry (now MyFerryLink Nord Pas de Calais)

The Automatic Identification System (AIS) is an automatic tracking system used on ships and by vessel traffic services (VTS) for identifying and locating vessels by electronically exchanging data with other nearby ships and AIS Base stations. AIS information supplements marine radar, which continues to be the primary method of collision avoidance for water transport.

John Latter on April 1, 2013

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Photo details

  • Uploaded on July 17, 2010
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by John Latter
    • Camera: PENTAX Corporation PENTAX K100D
    • Taken on 2010/07/01 16:59:05
    • Exposure: 0.001s (1/800)
    • Focal Length: 200.00mm
    • F/Stop: f/7.100
    • ISO Speed: ISO200
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash