Following an enquiry from NIFerrySite, we can reveal that Stena Line is interested in launching a Liverpool to Dublin ferry. This follows the announcement that P&O Ferries will close their route later in 2023.
When contacted by this website about the potential of a service from Liverpool (Birkenhead) to Dublin, Stena Line provided the following statement;
“Following confirmation of market changes in the Dublin-Liverpool corridor, Stena Line can confirm that it will be registering an interest in re-establishing a Dublin–Birkenhead service.
Stena Line already operates services at both ports and believes that the addition of a new Dublin-Birkenhead service to its Irish Sea route portfolio would complement its existing Belfast to Birkenhead and Dublin to Holyhead operations.
Stena Line understands that Dublin Port will now initiate a selection process to identify a potential new operator for the Dublin-UK corridor and Stena Line can confirm that it will be participating fully in this process.”Stena Line supplied quote to NIFerrySite 30/8/23
Swedish ferry company Stena Line has also previously shown interest in the Liverpool to Dublin route, and at one stage had intended to acquire P&O’s operation before the deal was blocked on competition grounds. An all-new Stena operation would not have to clear the same regulatory hurdles, however.
Stena Line, which already has the largest route network on the Irish Sea, is the only ferry company other than Seatruck (owned by CLdN) with access to a ro-ro ferry terminal in the Merseyside area and already has a presence in Dublin.
The company signed an agreement with Peel Ports earlier this year to extend its lease on the 12 Quays terminal at Birkenhead until 2100. Stena has also acquired two additional sites adjacent to 12 Quays to increase the amount of vehicle storage space available at the terminal.
Largest Irish Sea Operator
An expansion to the Birkenhead – Dublin route would bring Stena Line’s total number of Irish Sea routes to seven.
The Belfast hub serves the ports of Cairnryan, Liverpool (Birkenhead) and Heysham. Meanwhile, there are routes between Ireland and Wales from Holyhead to Dublin and Fishguard to Rosslare. Finally, there is the Rosslare – Cherbourg route, linking Ireland and France.
With 12 ferries, no other Irish Sea ferry operator has such a large network of routes or covering all markets.
Stena Line could easily secure the appropriate tonnage to maintain a Dublin – Birkenhead route. As well as a large fleet, Stena Line can access the resources of Stena RoRo.