Archive for the ‘Liverpool visit’ Category

Another view of Liverpool waterfront

Another view of Liverpool waterfront

Yesterday I posted about my visit to Liverpool Cruise terminal on Wednesday and focused on the terminal’s history and how it handles day calls. Today I’m going to focus on how the terminal handles cruise turnarounds, and about future plans for the terminal.

Although the terminal was constructed for cruise day calls only, it was, I gather, always hoped that a way could be found to use it for turnarounds. In the end the impetus for this came from Fred Olsen. They had previously done cruise turnarounds from Liverpool, but from Langton Dock in Bootle, and using their smallest ship, Black Prince. Langton Dock is connected to the river via locks, and the problem was the potential difficulty of getting a larger ship through these locks. At the end of the 2009 season Fred Olsen retired Black Prince and replaced her at Langton Dock for 2010 with the much larger Boudicca (28,000 GRT as against 9,500 GRT). After a few cruises with Boudicca Fred Olsen decided that getting her in and out of Langton Dock was too fraught with potential problems. These were not actual risks to the ship or passengers, but issues such as possible delays if the winds were too strong – the clearances through the lock were much tighter for the larger ship and required calmer conditions, and if those couldn’t be achieved then cruise schedules could be disrupted. Fred Olsen therefore took the decision that they would fulfil the already-planned program of cruises from Liverpool for 2010 and 2011 but that they would withdraw from Liverpool after the 2011 programme. This was widely seen as a heavy blow – here’s a link to a story about it in the Liverpool Echo at the time the announcement was made (2010); and here, to balance the picture, is a link to the announcement they made in 2012 to say they would return in 2013.

To be fair, Liverpool always knew that using the new terminal for cruise turnarounds was going to be essential, but there was a problem – they were prohibited from doing so as a result of conditions attached to the public funds that had been used to construct it.  (more…)

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Liverpool waterfront - eat your hearts out, everywhere else!

Liverpool waterfront – eat your hearts out, everywhere else!

Yesterday I visited the Liverpool Cruise terminal. I was interested to learn how Liverpool has grown in recent years as a cruise destination, both for day calls and also for turnarounds, and about the new facilities that have been introduced to support turnaround operations. These days Liverpool is regularly receiving day calls by some very large ships – in this month alone (July 2015) there have been calls by QM2, Britannia, and Royal Princess. I also wanted to find out what I could about plans for the future. I met with Angie Redhead, Cruise & Operations manager at the terminal, and I must thank her for her time. This first post will deal briefly with the history and with day calls – another post will cover turnarounds and the future.

Liverpool is a great cruise destination, of course, and the terminal is excellently located – it is barely a five-minute walk away from the new Museum of Liverpool, Albert Dock is not much further away, and the city centre shops are also close by.  However, it presents some challenges in that because it is so centrally located close to all the attractions of the city centre it is necessarily on a small site, and I wanted to learn how these challenges are being tackled.

First, the history. (more…)

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