A FERRY firm’s new £30m flagship is on her way to the Solent to join the rest of the company’s fleet.
The environmentally-friendly hybrid energy ferry, called the Victoria of Wight and commissioned for Wightlink, departed from the Cemre shipyard in Yalova, Turkey on July 16 for the 3,019 nautical mile journey to Portsmouth.
She is being towed by tug Amber II through the Sea of Marmara, past Gallipoli through the Dardanelles, then westward through the Mediterranean passing Greece, Sicily and Spain before turning north at Gibraltar to sail along the Portuguese coast, across the Bay of Biscay and into the Channel. The trip should take 17 days.
Victoria of Wight has been specifically designed and built to serve the Isle of Wight on the Portsmouth – Fishbourne route.
Wightlink chief executive Keith Greenfield said: ‘We are delighted to announce Victoria of Wight is on her way home.
‘This is the final stage of our £45m investment in the Portsmouth to Fishbourne route and we look forward to introducing her to our staff and customers this summer.
‘Victoria of Wight will set new standards for comfort and her environmental credentials are impressive.’
The new ship has room for up to 178 cars and more than 1,000 passengers. Powered by hybrid energy, Victoria of Wight will be quieter and with fewer emissions than other vessels. The ship is expected to enter service this summer.