First of DFDS’s new Rosslare – Dunkerque ferries confirmed

By: Steven Tarbox
Last updated:
VISBY. Gotlandsbolaget
VISBY. Gotlandsbolaget

The first two of three ferries to be deployed on DFDS’s new “Brexit Buster” Rosslare – Dunkerque route have been named. KERRY, which was previously used on Brittany Ferries Rosslare – Bilbao route will be joined by Rederi AB Gotland’s VISBY. The identity of the third vessel is expected to be confirmed next week.

Industry publisher and information service Shippax has received confirmation of the vessels direct from DFDS. This follows a report from France earlier today. KERRY is already on charter with DFDS and is currently providing additional capacity on the Kiel – Klaipeda route.

Both ships had been named in speculation following the announcement of the new route late last month.

Brittany Ferries KERRY. Brittany Ferries / Jose Luis Diaz Campa.
KERRY. Brittany Ferries / Jose Luis Diaz Campa.

While KERRY is well known in Irish shipping and haulage circles, VISBY is a new vessel to both the English Channel and Irish Sea. Completed by Guangzhou Shipyard in 2003, the ship was originally designed for the Visby – Nynashamn/Oskarshamn service in Sweden. Although configured as a day ferry, VISBY also has 119 passenger cabins onboard. By contrast, KERRY has 79.

VISBY was designed to sail at up to 28 knots, though it seems unlikely DFDS will utilise this speed given the high fuel consumption required to achieve it. According to an earlier announcement by Rederi AB Gotland, VISBY has been chartered until May with the option of an extension.

KERRY will become the fourth Visentini series Ro-Pax in service between Ireland and Continental Europe when she joins the route. The others are Irish Ferries EPSILON, Stena Line’s STENA HORIZON, and Brittany Ferries CONNEMARA. The Dunkerque – Rosslare service is expected to start next month once the UK leaves the current EU transition arrangements.

Visby technical data

Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI), China
Gross tonnage29,746
Length196 metres
Beam25.00 metres
Draught6.40 metres
Freight Capacity 1,800 lane metres

A full profile for VISBY will be added to NI Ferry Site in due course.

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