Brittany Ferries Announces New Ireland – France Route

By: Steven Tarbox
COTENTIN. Image: Brittany Ferries
COTENTIN. Image: Brittany Ferries

Rosslare – Le Havre to Commence Later in November 

France’s Brittany Ferries has announced that it will offer a new freight-only Rosslare – Le Havre service to hauliers from 12 November.  The weekend-only route will be operated by the freight ferry COTENTIN.  The company will also continue to offer its weekly Rosslare – Cherbourg route.

The Le Havre route is the latest response to increased demand for direct service between Ireland and Continental Europe.  Brittany Ferries has reported a 76% increase in freight carried since September compared to the first eight months of the year. 

Brittany Ferries expects there to be a further increase in demand for direct Ireland – France ferry services during early 2022.  Additional checks on vehicles passing between Great Britain and the EU are due to be introduced, further affecting landbridge traffic.

Christophe Matthieu, Managing Director of Brittany Ferries says:

“Thanks to flexibility in our fleet and agility in our operations, we have been able to move quickly to meet growing demand,” 

“Brexit has delivered more headaches than opportunities, particularly on routes serving the UK and France. However, the so-called Brexit by-pass, where freight operations avoid the UK completely, is one area that has worked to our advantage.”

COTENTIN’s Le Havre – Rosslare schedule will be as follows:

Depart    Le Havre    Friday    19:00

Arrive    Rosslare    Saturday    14:30

Depart    Rosslare    Saturday    17:45

Arrive    Le Havre    Sunday    15:00

Jean-Marc Roué, Brittany Ferries’ president comments:

“The red, white and blue of the French Tricolore  must be flown on the routes to Ireland from Brittany and Normandy. And who better than Brittany Ferries, the largest employer of French seafarers, to display them proudly? This new route between Le Havre and Rosslare is an important step. The biggest French port should have its own freight link to Ireland.

“Economically, it’s obvious. In almost a year, the number of freight vehicles transported by sea from Ireland has tripled. I have no doubt that the imposition of control measures on the UK-Ireland landbridge at the beginning of 2022 will further strengthen this appetite for the sea alternative, and that this Le Havre/Rosslare route has a bright future.

“But it’s is also strategically essential for our Company: we must be present wherever there’s a real potential for growth as part of our return to competitivity. Our experience sailing to Ireland, both from Cherbourg and from Brittany, is compelling enough for us to embark on this adventure, creating a new route between our two countries.”

Brittany Ferries has also reported an increase in demand for its twice-weekly Rosslare – Bilbao service.  The company reports that it is now carrying 1,000 freight units per month between the two ports.  Demand has risen 70% in the first eight months of the year compared to 2020 according to the company.  

Earlier in the year, Brittany Ferries introduced a temporary freight service connecting Rosslare and Cork to St. Malo and Roscoff. The ARMORIQUE operated these sailings, which was a response to the immediate effects of Brexit on Ireland – France freight traffic.

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