Stena Line 2022 Fleet Moves – Part 1 – North Sea

By: Gary Andrews
POL STELLA 7 August 2021 at Rozenburg. Image: Rob de Visser
POL STELLA 7 August 2021 at Rozenburg. Image: Rob de Visser

Fleet changes is the New Year theme for one of Europe’s biggest ferry companies, Stena Line.  A series of both temporary and permanent fleet and route moves will kick off 2022.

Over the next days, NIFS provides an overview of the changes, as they appear to stand at present.  Note that all dates and events could be subject to change.

In our first update, we look at what is ahead on the North Sea.

A change of port

STENA FORERUNNER. Image: Scott Mackey
STENA FORERUNNER. Image: Scott Mackey

One of the biggest changes is the move of the Killingholme – Rotterdam Europoort route to the alternative River Humber port of Immingham.  This change was announced in June 2021, but only kicks in on 4 January.

The move is described by Stena as being due to the increased market demand of unaccompanied freight leading to a requirement for additional terminal capacity which wasn’t possible at Killingholme.  

The Killingholme – Rotterdam route has been served by the POL STELLA and POL MARIS since early 2020.  However, the two vessels aren’t moving to the new service.

As an interim measure, STENA FORERUNNER replaces POL MARIS, commencing with the Rotterdam – Killingholme sailing on 20 December.  POL MARIS will, for now, take STENA FORERUNNER’s place on the Rotterdam – Harwich route.  She will operate alongside the SOMERSET, which has recently had her charter extended for 12 months from January 2022.

SOMERSET 1 May 2020. Image: Rob de Visser.
SOMERSET 1 May 2020. Image: Rob de Visser.

New ships for a new route

For the move to Immingham, Stena Line is taking the FIONIA SEA and JUTLANDIA SEA on charter for four years from January, reportedly at a rate of €18,000 per day

The ships are currently on charter to Wallenius-SOL, who are shortly due to receive newbuild LNG tonnage.

JUTLANDIA SEA will join Stena in January.  FIONIA SEA will be slightly later, she is currently due to replace STENA FORERUNNER with the 1945 sailing from Rotterdam to Immingham on 4 February.

The timetable of change for the move of routes is follows.

Ex UKEx Netherlands
Final Sailings Killingholme – Rotterdam 1945 ex Killingholme 30/12/21 POL STELLA 1845 ex Rotterdam 30/12/21 STENA FORERUNNER
First Sailings Immingham – Rotterdam1945 ex Immingham 4/1/22 STENA FORERUNNER1945 ex Rotterdam 4/1/22 JUTLANDIA SEA

Final duties then fleet exit

STENA FORERUNNER will return to the Rotterdam – Harwich route on 6 February.  The final POL MARIS trip for Stena Line is currently scheduled as 5 February from Harwich.

After finishing on the Killingholme – Rotterdam route, POL STELLA will cover for the STENA BRITANNICA from the afternoon sailing from Hoek van Holland on 10 January until the evening sailing from Harwich on 19 January.  She then covers for the STENA HOLLANDICA from the evening sailing from Hoek van Holland on 20 January until the morning sailing from Harwich on 29 January.

There are industry reports that the Polish Ocean Lines owned POL MARIS and POL STELLA will go on charter to DFDS.  Whilst industry information has suggested the Rosslare – Dunkerque route, these could well be the vessels needed for the Killingholme – Rotterdam space-charter capacity increase DFDS and CLdN.

POL MARIS 30 October 2020. Image: Rob de Visser
POL MARIS 30 October 2020. Image: Rob de Visser

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