Dunkerque Seaways recently received her most thorough winter refit for several years and left the Damen yard at Dunkerque, not with just a new livery, but after a major mechanical overhaul as well as interior renovations.
Her two sisters are following suit. The technical work included bow doors rehung, rudder overhauled, a thorough service of the engines, stern thruster removed and refi tted, and the ship’s power management control system brought up to date. As for that livery – I like it.
A simple colour scheme is often the smartest – think Cunard of yesterday and today, and the Bergen Line of beloved memory. And a dark hull and matching funnel makes a nice change from a fairly insipid blue that the DFDS fleet has sported now for several years.
She received her repaint and refurbishment in the company of her two new recent fleet mates Cote Des Dunes, ex Rodin and Cote des Flandres, ex Berlioz long term chartered from Eurotunnel following the high profile and messy end to the Myferrylink operation.
I think the ships are transformed in this new livery which will help put behind them their unhappy SeaFrance and Myferrylink days. They are due to enter full Channel service Dover-Calais before the end of February and I would expect them to settle down as excellent units of the DFDS stable.
The ferry companies are spreading their maintenance funds around and here is a snapshot of some of that spread. Damen at Dunkerque is currently working on P&O ferries’ Pride of Canterbury. A&P at Falmouth, this January, saw the Irish Ferries’ giant Ulysses while other units of the Irish fleet, Jonathan Swift and Isle of Inishmore, were at Cammell Lairds which also saw the Isle of Man Steam Packet vessels.
Stena, meanwhile, is obviously making much – and rightly so – of their special relationship with Belfast and the famed Harland and Wolff where the seven Stena vessels serving Ireland are having their work done.