New Â£30m Wightlink ferry sails into Portsmouth harbour for the first timeÂ
Wightlink's new Â£30mÂ flagship Victoria of Wight has arrived inÂ Portsmouth Harbour for the first time.
The ferry entered the harbour just before 11.15am today after her 3,010 nautical mileÂ journey from the Cemre shipyard in Yalova, Turkey. She left on Monday, July 16.Â
She is Wightlink's new flagship for the Portsmouth-Fishbourne route, and has sailed through the Mediterranean, theÂ Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Biscay, towed by the oceangoing tug Amber II.
Wightlink chief executive Keith Greenfield said 'Her arrival is the final milestone in our Â£45mÂ investment in the Portsmouth to Fishbourne route and our customers will soon beÂ sailing on her.'
Victoria of Wight can carry up to 178 cars and more than 1,000 passengers. Building work started in November 2016.
Powered by hybridÂ energy, from a combination of batteries and conventional engines, Victoria of Wight will be quieterÂ than other similar vessels with fewer emissions.
Wightlink selected Cemre to build its new flagship following a tendering process basedÂ on quality, delivery time and price. Although there was interest from many shipbuilders around theÂ world, Wightlink says no UK yards submitted a tender which complied with its requirements.
Captain Tom Vincent was on the bridge for the last part of the journey into Portsmouth Harbour.
He spent two months at the shipyard with other Wightlink colleagues, finalising theÂ construction.
'˜We can't wait to train our crews and get Victoria of Wight ready toÂ welcome customers,' he explains. '˜She is one of the next generation of ferries and will transformÂ our services between Portsmouth and Fishbourne.'