Home   Dover   News   Article

Injunction sought over ferry blockade

P&O Ferries are seeking a formal court injunction to stop the blockade of the Port of Calais which is taking place today for the second time in 48 hours.

Yesterday it was the French fishermen who were stopping ferries entering or leaving the port as they protested about fishing quotas which they said could affect their jobs.

Today it is believed that the French dockers are causing the problems. SeaFrance ferries are currently at Calais where staff are having a meeting.

Brian Rees, of P&O Ferries, said their last ferry ran this morning at 7am, and 45 minutes later all services were called.

He said attempts were made by the French to stop the P&O Acquitaine from leaving Calais, but it managed to get away and returned to Dover.

The company then sent the Pride of Burgundy to Calais with only three lorries and their drivers on board. “We warned the drivers that we might not be able to get them into the port, but we would try,” said Mr Rees.

The ship was stopped from entering, and details were taken of those who were blocking the port.

“We needed that information in order to apply for a formal court injunction, and that is what we are now doing.”

The company chairman, Lord Sterling, has also met the French ambassador in London this morning to express his “extreme concern” over France’s attitude to secondary picketing.

“We have no issue with their right to protest, but it’s wrong when such a protest prevents innocent parties from going about their lawful business,” said Mr Rees. “It is causing massive disruption for British tourists and freight drivers.”

Meanwhile other passengers are being offered “mini-cruises” on board P&O Ferries’ fleet out of Dover, sailing across the Channel into French waters and back again so that they can buy items on board at French duty prices.

Yesterday around 700 people took advantage of these mini-cruises. Others were offered tickets for another day or refunds.

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More