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PASSENGERS arrived eight hours late after a technical problem blighted a channel-crossing ferry.

A Brittany Ferries ship sailing from Santander to Portsmouth suffered a problem with a fuel pump to one of its engines.

It meant the ship had to wait off the coast of Brittany for around 90 minutes on Monday morning and it arrived in Portsmouth at midnight – eight hours late.

A replacement part already on the ship was fitted at sea.

The ship, Etretat, had 247 passengers on board.

One, who asked not to be named, said: ‘It’s not funny when you’re stranded in the sea.’

But a spokesman for the firm said the ferry was not stranded.

In a statement he said: ‘Passengers were given a free meal on board and we also provided hotel accommodation in Portsmouth for those passengers who were unable to continue their journey due to the late arrival.’

Another passenger contacted the firm and said while it 
was inconvenient the staff were helpful.