A second former P&O Ferries Dover to Calais stalwart has left for recycling following the arrival of the new flagship P&O PIONEER. The PRIDE OF KENT left Calais for the final time this afternoon after several months laid up, first at Dover then Tilbury. Her destination is Aliaga, Türkiye, where she will be recycled – the same destination and fate that former operating partner PRIDE OF BURGUNDY had earlier this year.
PRIDE OF KENT and PRIDE OF BURGUNDY were originally ordered as part of a quartet of “Super-Freighters” by P&O Ferries to meet the challenge of the Channel Tunnel on its then busy Dover to Zeebrugge route.
The first of the ships, EUROPEAN SEAWAY, would be the sole member of the class to not be converted to a passenger Ro-Pax ferry. The final of the quartet, PRIDE OF BURGUNDY, was hastily converted to a Ro-Pax “on the stocks” before delivery to strengthen P&O’s offer on the Dover to Calais route. The middle pair, EUROPEAN PATHWAY and EUROPEAN HIGHWAY were rebuilt as the Dover to Calais Ro-Pax ferries PRIDE OF KENT and PRIDE OF CANTERBURY during 2003 following the closure of the Dover to Zeebrugge route.
Sister-ship PRIDE OF CANTERBURY left Dover on 5 October for layup at Tilbury. With both PRIDE OF BURGUNDY and PRIDE OF KENT having already gone for recycling, it looks likely that the ‘Canterbury will soon follow them to Türkiye. The former EUROPEAN SEAWAY was resold following a costly conversion earlier this year and is currently in service between Costa Rica and El Salvador as BLUE WAVE HARMONY.
P&O Ferries is expecting delivery of P&O PIONEER‘s sister-ship, P&O LIBERTÉ, before the end of the year. The company currently has the newest ferry fleet on the English Channel as a result of its £250m investment in P&O PIONEER and P&O LIBERTÉ.