Fast ferry firm on verge of catamaran deal

IMMINENT: Euroferries say the vessel will provide the fastest Channel crossings
IMMINENT: Euroferries say the vessel will provide the fastest Channel crossings

THE company planning to start fast ferry operations from Dover to Calais and Boulogne says the deal to buy the catamaran Spirit of Ontario will be completed "within the next few days".

When the service will start has not yet been announced, but Euroferries’ bosses say the craft will provide the fastest crossing between Dover and the French ports.

The company said: "Euroferries will operate sailings from the hoverport at the Western Docks.

"The vessel’s speed and capacity to include coaches will be fully utilised with its maximum speed of 45 knots, to carry 750 passengers and 238 cars and will provide the fastest crossing time between Dover and Calais in 29 minutes and Boulogne in 49 minutes.

"The Spirit becomes the first ever fast ferry to carry coaches between Dover and France with a capacity for up to 10 coaches and will also carry mid-size freight vehicles.

"Euroferries have secured berths at Dover, Calais and Boulogne and are awaiting the arrival of the Sprit of Ontario. The dry docking has been booked in Portsmouth."

The company says a booking reservation system is ready to start operating, and will begin when the vessel reaches Dover.

"There have been minor delays reaching a maintenance agreement with the German engine manufacturer MTU, who have attended meetings with Euroferries in Dover. This agreement will be concluded within the next few days.

"Euroferries delivery crew including Captain and First Engineer will arrive in Rochester (New York) shortly thereafter to take possession of the vessel for the delivery voyage in conjunction with Bay Ferries.

Euroferries; operations director is former Hoverspeed boss Geoffrey Ede, and the commercial director is Denville Reed.

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