To coincide with the introduction of the first of Stena Line’s “next-generation” E-Flexer ferries on the Belfast – Liverpool (Birkenhead) route, STENA EDDA, significant work has been undertaken in both Belfast and Birkenhead by Belfast Harbour and Peel Ports. In Belfast, the existing linkspan which had been in use since Norse Irish Ferries restarted the Belfast to Liverpool route in 1991, has been replaced with a twin-level structure. Modifications have also been made to the fendering in order to accommodate the new ships which are almost 30m longer than STENA LAGAN and STENA MERSEY.
Dromore-based GRAHAM was responsible for the bulk of the on-site work at Belfast VT2 which included constructing a large concrete ramp to access the upper tier. David Faerder sent these photos in which were taken last weekend.
At Birkenhead an additional level has been added on top of the pontoon used as a linkspan at the 12 Quays terminal used by the service. The bulk of the work on-site was undertaken by Farrans with Dutch specialist Ravestein supplying elements such as the new 55m long connecting bridge and supports for the upper tier, as well as the ramps. Ravestein was also responsible for the design of the upper tier bridge and ramps. The following photos were kindly suppled by Rob Foy and David Faerder.
STENA EDDA is expected to berth at VT2 for the first time this coming Wednesday. She is expected to enter service during March once successful berthing trials have been completed at both ports and final commissioning and training is completed.