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New superferry heads for Dover

Spirit of Britain
Spirit of Britain

The first of the two new superferries being built for the Dover-Calais service is due to arrive at the port on Sunday, January 9, at 11am.

Spirit of Britain left the shipyard in Finland on Wednesday after undergoing sea trials.

The Finnish flag was lowered at noon and the Red Ensign was raised in its place as the ship was officially handed over to its owners, P&O Ferries.

The second ship, Spirit of France, is currently being constructed and is due to come into service later this year. The ships cost more than £330 million.

At 213 metres long and weighing 49,000 tonnes, they will be the largest ever to operate between Dover and Calais.

They each have a carrying capacity of 180 articulated lorries plus 200 cars and 1,750 passengers.

The ships are replacing the Pride of Dover - which has already been withdrawn from service - and the Pride of Calais.

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