Irish Ferries: W.B. YEATS (Vessel Profile)

W.B. YEATS is Irish Ferries new ferry built for their Dublin to France and Dublin to Holyhead services.

IMO Number: 9809679

Constructed by: Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft mbH & Co. KG [DE], #771

Also known as: FSG771 (before name announced)

Irish Ferries new German-built RoPax W. B. YEATS returns to FSG on 07.11.18 following sea trials off the Danish Coast. Copyright © Frank Jensen.

Photo: Irish Ferries new German-built RoPax W. B. YEATS returns to FSG on 07.11.18 following sea trials off the Danish Coast. Copyright © Frank Jensen.

This article is the vessel profile for Irish Ferries W.B. YEATS.  For the dedicated build page with archived updates click here.

Overview of W.B Yeats

W.B. YEATS is Irish Ferries new Ireland to France ferry.  She replaces OSCAR WILDE as the French services flagship.  She was ordered in May 2016 from Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft in Germany, and is the first new-build ferry to enter service for the company since ULYSSES in 2001.  She is also the first new ship ordered by the company for their Ireland to France services since SAINT PATRICK (which was ordered by predecessor Irish Continental Line in 1972).  Coincidentally SAINT PATRICK (which later became Belfast Car Ferries ST COLUM I) was also built in Germany.  When the order was originally announced Irish Ferries stated that the new ferry would be built for both the Dublin to France and Dublin to Holyhead services.  This changed however when Irish Ferries announced an order for a second new-build from the same yard in January 2018, in the process exercising an option which was negotiated in the contract for the first vessel.  This would be a larger part-sister specifically built for the Dublin to Holyhead service, with the first vessel (now to be named W.B. YEATS following a naming competition) to be dedicated to French services once the second vessel arrived.  This will potentially allow the chartered Visentini Ro-Pax EPSILON to be returned to her Italian owners.

Rendering of Irish Ferries W.B. YEATS which was produced prior to the name of the new vessel being announced. Copyright © Irish Ferries
Rendering of Irish Ferries W.B. YEATS which was produced prior to the name of the new vessel being announced. Copyright © Irish Ferries

When the order was announced the delivery date was stated as May 2018, however this date slipped a number of times.  This meant that W.B. YEATS missed the entirety of her inaugural summer season, leading to much negative publicity due to passengers sailings being cancelled or transferred to other “inferior” Irish Ferries vessels or other operators services.  On November 29th 2018 Irish Continental Group announced that they had been given a revised delivery date of “Early” December for W.B. YEATS, with the vessel “undergoing final delivery adjustments” at the yard.  Following crew familiarisation, berthing trials, and all other required processes prior to entering service it is expected that W.B. YEATS will enter service on the Dublin to Holyhead route as second-ship to ULYSSES before moving full-time to the Dublin to Cherbourg route in spring 2019.

Technical Data

Artist's impression of Irish Ferries new approx 50,000 gt vessel. © FSG.
An early artist’s impression of Irish Ferries new approx 50,000 gt vessel. © FSG.
NameW. B. YEATS
IMO Number9809679 
Call Sign5BXC4
Design/Marine ArchitectFlensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft mbH & Co. KG, Flensburg, Germany
Building Yard
(Hull and Assembly)
Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft mbH & Co. KG, Flensburg, Germany
Building Yard
(Superstructure)
Marine Projects Ltd, Gdańsk, Poland (Fore and aft sections)

Holm Construction Ltd Sp. z o.o, Gdańsk, Poland (Middle section)

Stocznia Gdańsk S.A, Gdańsk, Poland (Pre-fabricated flat sections)
EPCI (Engineering, Procurement, Construction, and Installation of Maritime Technology)Kongsberg Maritime (Norway)
Interior DesignOSK Shiptech A/S (Denmark)
Steen Friis Design A/S (Denmark)
Yard NumberFSG 771
ClassificationDNV-GL
Order Announced31.05.16
Steel Cutting07.04.2017
Keel Laying11.09.17
Hull Launch19.01.18
Sea Trials29.10.18 – 7.11.18
Superstructure sections lifted into place
(at FSG, Flensburg)
Forward section (including bridge): 06.02.18

Mid-section: 07.02.18

Aft section (including funnel): 08.02.18
DeliveryEarly December 2018
(originally scheduled for May 2018)
In Service (route)TBC
Length Overall194.8m
Length between Perpendiculars186.5m
Beam (moulded)31.6m
Draught (design)6.5m
Draught (scantling)6.7m
Deadweight7,537 (to be confirmed)
Gross Tonnage54,975 (approx)
Total number of decks
Number of Passenger Decks4
Machinery4 x MaK (Caterpillar Marine) 8M 43 C  marine-diesel engines producing 8,400kW each
4 x 800kW Konutherm AKV 0,6 / 40 waste gas boilers
1 x 3,560kW Konutherm KOH 2.5 / 50 thermal oil boiler
Fin stabilisers
Exhaust Gas Scrubbers
Power33,600kW
Design Speed22.5 knots
Passenger Capacity1,800
Crew85
Cabins455 passenger cabins
60 crew cabins
(1885 total berths)
Vehicle Capacity2,800 freight lane metres (approx. 165 trucks)
Dedicated deck for 300 cars (a max of 1,216 cars can be carried if all freight space is filled with cars)
Vehicle AccessTwin-level drive through loading configuration with bow and stern doors, and internal ramps. 
Passenger FacilitiesA range of premium suites and inside/outside cabin accommodation
‘Innisfree’ Club Class Lounge
‘Lady Gregory’ A la Carte restaurant
Cafe Lafayette
‘Boylans’ Brasserie
‘Maude Gonne’ Bar
‘The Abbey & The Peacock’ Cinema and Lounge
‘The Hazel Wood’ Quiet Lounge
‘Salley Gardens’ Kids Room
‘Crazy Jane’s’ Games Room
Shopping
‘Drumcliff’ Promenade Deck
Freight Drivers Lounge
Pet hotel
FlagLimassol (Cyprus)

Construction

W. B. YEATS was constructed using modern modular construction methods. While her hull was assembled at FSG from pre-fabricated sections built on-site, her superstructure was the product of three different yards in Poland.  FSG contracted the manufacture of the superstructure sections to long-term partner Marine Project of Gdańsk, who themselves subcontracted the centre section to Holm Construction (also based in Gdańsk).  The flat steel sections required to build all of the superstructure sections were supplied by Stocznia Gdańsk S.A (part of the famous former Lenin Shipyard which gave birth to the Solidarity movement in the 1980’s).  

The hull of W.B. YEATS on the covered slipway at FSG just prior to her launch at 12:00 on 19th of January 2018. Irish Ferries.
The hull of W.B. YEATS on the covered slipway at FSG just prior to her launch at 12:00 on 19th of January 2018. Irish Ferries.

Norway’s Kongsberg Maritime were awarded the Engineering, Procurement, Construction, and Installation (EPCI) contract for the build.  This covered engineering and maritime equipment deliveries for W.B. YEATS.   Subsidiary Kongsberg Maritime Engineering (KME) were awarded the contract for all engineering, procurement and project management for the build, while parent company Kongsberg Maritime was awarded the contract for ‘Full Picture’ system delivery.  The scope of this included the supply and integration of all electrical, telecom and integrated control systems, interface management and engineering services, as well as all associated cables, installation and installation materials.  In addition, Kongsberg also supplied all; shaft generators, switchboards, automation, propulsion control, navigation systems, and radio/satellite communications systems including a tailor made Electrical, Instrument, and Telecom (EIT) solution for the vessel.

Irish Ferries W.B. Yeats shown under construction at the Flensburger shipyard on 7th February 2018. In this view the heavy-lift crane barges TAKLIFT and MATADOR have lifted the central section of the superstructure into place. Copyright © Frank Jensen
Irish Ferries W.B. Yeats shown under construction at the Flensburger shipyard on 7th February 2018. In this view the heavy-lift crane barges TAKLIFT and MATADOR have lifted the central section of the superstructure into place. Copyright © Frank Jensen

As well as building the physical superstructure sections, Marine Project and Holm Construction supplied them mostly fitted out with bulkheads, furniture, fixtures, and fittings, cabling, pipework, and even most of the wheelhouse equipment.  The sections were also supplied mostly painted with only areas which needed to be welded together or to the hull not already painted for delivery.   Although this method of prefabrication had proven very successful on previous smaller and less complex ferry builds, it would at least in part ultimately contribute to significant delays in the delivery of the vessel with electrical systems causing particular difficulties according to the yard.  Despite the superstructure being delivered mostly completed, some 600km of cabling still had to be laid throughout the vessel.   According to FSG Managing Director Rüdiger Fuchs (external link, in German), W.B. YEATS was also the first vessel the yard had built to comply with the Safe Return To Port (SRTP) requirements, which also contributed to delays due to the technical challenges associated in meeting these standards.

Irish Ferries W.B. Yeats shown under construction at the Flensburger shipyard on 8th February 2018. The heavy-lift crane barges MATADOR and TAKLIFT have competed the lifting of the last section of superstructure into place in this view. Copyright © Frank Jensen.
Irish Ferries W.B. Yeats shown under construction at the Flensburger shipyard on 8th February 2018. The heavy-lift crane barges MATADOR and TAKLIFT have competed the lifting of the last section of superstructure into place in this view. Copyright © Frank Jensen.

The much delayed sea trials took place from the evening of October 29th until the morning of November 7th 2018, with open-sea trials off the coast of Bornholm where she achieved speeds in excess of 23 knots.

Irish Ferries new German-built RoPax W. B. YEATS returns to FSG on 07.11.18 following sea trials off the Danish Coast. Tirrenia's MARIA GRAXIA ONORATO is seen moored at the outfitting pier Copyright © Frank Jensen.
Irish Ferries new German-built RoPax W. B. YEATS returns to FSG on 07.11.18 following sea trials off the Danish Coast. Tirrenia’s MARIA GRAZIA ONORATO is seen moored at the outfitting pier Copyright © Frank Jensen.

Passenger Facilities

The passenger facilities of W.B YEATS are spread out over 4 decks, with three of those decks containing cabins and also stretching for most of the length of the vessel.  The uppermost passenger deck (Deck 11) only occupies the forward part of the superstructure and boasts views over the bow and almost full-height windows.  This is the only passenger deck on the vessel which does not contain any passenger cabins.  The ‘Innisfree’ Club Class Lounge is located a deck below on Deck 10 and has its own outside deck area overlooking the bow, above the bridge, which is situated on Deck 9 which is mainly a cabin deck.  Deck 8, the lowest passenger deck, is also mainly a cabin deck and houses the suites and disabled cabins as well as a variety of standard cabin accommodation.  In total there are 17 different cabin options as well as the option of reserving a sleep in the reclining seat lounges on Deck 10.

The Maude Gonne' Bar and Lounge onboard W.B. YEATS (rendering). Irish Ferries.
The Maude Gonne’ Bar and Lounge onboard W.B. YEATS (rendering). Irish Ferries.

The full list of passenger facilities known to date is as follows;

  • ‘Innisfree’ Club Class Lounge
  • ‘Lady Gregory’ A la Carte restaurant
  • Cafe Lafayette
  • ‘Boylans’ Brasserie
  • ‘Maude Gonne’ Bar
  • ‘The Abbey & The Peacock’ Cinema and Lounge
  • ‘The Hazel Wood’ Quiet Lounge
  • ‘Salley Gardens’ Kids Room
  • ‘Crazy Jane’s’ Games Room
  • Shopping
  • ‘Drumcliff’ Promenade Deck
  • Freight Drivers Lounge
  • Pet hotel

Last Updated 03.12.18

Irish Ferries 1987 built cruise ferry 'Oscar Wilde' berthed at Harland & Wolff's Outfitting Quay. Pictured shortly after her arrival on 5/2/16. Originally she had been scheduled to visit A&P Falmouth, but delays to fleet mates 'Ulysses' and 'Isle of Inishmore' meant her slot was no longer available. Copyright © 2016 Steven Tarbox/NIFerrySite.

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