Vessel Profile: Spirit of Rathlin

Spirit of Rathlin departing Wiklow. Courtesy of AMS.

Profile of the Rathlin Island passenger and vehicle ferry SPIRIT OF RATHLIN. Includes an overview of her history, technical specifications, and photographs.

Vessel Profile: MV CANNA

Canna. Courtesy of the Department for Infrastructure (DFI).

Canna Introduction CANNA was the 7th of 8 island class vehicle and passenger ferries built to operate lifeline services to the Hebrides for Caledonian MacBrayne.  The island class design was by Burness Corlett, and based on that of a military landing craft.  The vessels are notable for lowering their ramps whilst still approaching the slipway.  This is to avoid grounding the shallow-draughted vessel and is possible due to the 2-stage folding action of the ramp itself.  When the ramp is deployed only the rearmost section lowers until it contacts the slipway.  The front section of the ramp then unfolds allowing vehicles and passengers to disembark. Prior to entering service between Ballycastle and Rathlin Island, CANNA had a varied career in Scottish waters.  She replaced her sister ship BRUERNISH on the Rathlin Island route in April 1997. In 2017 CANNA was replaced by the purpose-built SPIRIT OF RATHLIN after almost 20 years of unbroken service … Read more

New ferry for Rathlin Island service

MV Canna. Photograph Copyright © Gary Andrews

Transport Minister Danny Kennedy has announced that the £2.8million contract to build a replacement car ferry for service between Ballycastle and Rathlin Island has been won by Irish based Arklow Marine Services. ~ Friday, 22 May 2015 The new vessel, to replace the existing MV Canna, is expected to be in service from the end of the summer next year. Danny Kennedy said: “Today we see a very significant step forward in delivering a much needed new car ferry for the people of Rathlin Island and indeed for visitors to this unique part of Northern Ireland. “The new ferry which has been specifically designed to operate on the waters between Ballycastle and Rathlin Island will replace the now 40 year old MV Canna. “I congratulate Arklow Marine Services on their successful bid in the open competition which attracted interest from shipyards across Europe. I look forward to following the progress of … Read more