Friday, 4 November 2011

MS Saga Ruby Cruise Ship and Neptune Catamaran, Western Docks, Dover, Kent, UK

A post-sunrise view of the MS Saga Ruby berthed at CT1 (Cruise Terminal 1) on the Admiralty Pier of Dover Harbour's Western Docks:

Ex-MS Vistafjord and MS Caronia; owner: Saga Cruises; berthed CT1, Admiralty Pier; from Guernsey (Channel Islands), going Leith (Scotland). Neptune charter boat for fishing, diving. Shakespeare Cliff.
(Click this MS Saga Ruby cruise ship text link to see the largest size)

Usually the cruise ships reverse into position so that their bows point towards the Western Entrance and English Channel (to the left).

However, like the MS Saga Pearl II, the MS Saga Ruby is small enough to turn around in the Inner Harbour with room to spare when the times comes to leave.

This Dover Harbour photo was taken on a cycle ride (1) at 6.07 am on Tuesday, 24th of August 2010, from a point between the central Porthole Shelters (to the right) and the lighthouse (to the left) on the Prince of Wales Pier.

Half-an-hour earlier, the MS Saga Ruby had been photographed from St Martin's Battery, a Victorian and World War II coastal artillery position on top of the Western Heights overlooking the harbour. See Night Panorama of the Western Docks in Dover Harbour.

Beyond the passenger ship on the right of the photo is Shakespeare Cliff of King Lear fame and part of the White Cliffs of Dover.

At bottom-left is the Neptune catamaran, a charter boat powered by twin Caterpillar diesel engines and available for angling, diving, and commercial work. The skipper is David Batchelor: more information on the Neptune website.

The MS Saga Ruby has just completed the "Treasures of the Anglo-Celtic Isles" cruise that called at various ports in England, Scotland, Wales, Nothern Ireland, and Eire (Ireland).

Full itinerary (2): Edinburgh, Kirkwall, Portree, Greenock (Glasgow), Belfast, Holyhead (Wales), Dublin, Cork, Falmouth, Guernsey (Channel Islands).

Later in the day, the MS Saga Ruby left Dover for Leith in Scotland where Captain Steve Angove reported (3):

After leaving Dover on the 24th in 40 knots of wind via the eastern entrance to the harbour the Saga Ruby had a reasonable journey north towards its Scottish destination. There was a swell in the afternoon emanating from the north, where Norway was getting a bit of a battering, but the sun was shining and the wind and rain was confined to the South and Western regions of the UK, leaving our passengers to enjoy the day.

Saga Ruby arrived in the Firth of Forth to pick up the pilot at 1:15am, again an unfortunate time for all of us involved in the operation, due to tidal restrictions. The night was calm and Mars was in clear view as a slightly reddish star in the Southwest sector of the sky. For those using binoculars both moons, Phobos and Deimos, were also visible to any would be star gazer.

...Most of our passengers were off to the Edinburgh Tattoo in the evening, an experience I’d had the opportunity to enjoy on our previous visit to Leith less than two weeks ago. Once again the weather was being kind, with not a drop of rain in sight to dampen the spirits of our passengers as they returned for a party on the after deck. With a distinctly Scottish ambiance being created by the sound of the bagpipes and dances around the lido in full swing, the ship prepared to set off in search of some Tall Ships reported to have last been seen in German waters. (Abridged)

Videos: Saga Travel use the Saga Pearl II video to illustrate the Saga Ruby on their website. "A Look Inside" features both ships:

MS Saga Ruby (4)

The MS Saga Ruby is a cruise ship owned and operated by Saga Cruises PLC. She was built as the combined ocean liner/cruise ship MS Vistafjord in 1973 by Swan Hunter Shipbuilders in the United Kingdom for the Norwegian America Line.

In 1983 the MS Vistafjord was sold to Cunard Line, retaining her original name until 1999 when she was renamed MS Caronia. In 2004 she was sold to her current owners. She is the last cruise ship to have been built in the United Kingdom.

Career (4) (5)

Name: 1973-1999: MS Vistafjord, 1999-2004: MS Caronia, 2004 onwards: MS Saga Ruby
Owner: 1973-1983: Norwegian America Line, 1983-2004: Cunard Line, 2004 onwards: Saga Shipping Company
Operator: 1973-1983: Norwegian American Line, 1983-2004: Cunard Line, 2004 onwards: Saga Cruises
Port of registry: 1973-1983: Oslo, Norway, 1983-1999: Nassau, Bahamas, 1999-2004: Southampton, United Kingdom, 2004 onwards: London, United Kingdom
Builder: Swan Hunter Shipbuilders, Newcastle, England, United Kingdom
Call Sign: 9HA2415
IMO: 7214715
MMSI: 248563000
Status: In service

General characteristics (as built)

Type: cruise ship
Tonnage: 24,292 GRT
Displacement: 5,954 metric tons deadweight (DWT)
Length: 191.09 m (626 ft 11 in)
Beam: 25.00 m (82 ft 0 in)
Draught: 8.20 m (26 ft 11 in)
Ice class: 1 C
Installed power: 2 × Sulzer 9RD68 diesels, combined 17,650 kW
Propulsion: 2 propellers
Speed: 20 kn (37 km/h; 23 mph) service speed
Capacity: 670 passengers (maximum)

General characteristics (after 2005 refit)

Tonnage: 24,492 GT (gross tonnage)
Draught: 8.23 m (27 ft 0 in)
Decks: 9 (passenger accessible)
Capacity: 655 passengers (maximum)
Crew: 380

Click to see the official Saga Cruises website and official Saga Ruby webpage.

Ex- Builder's Yard, now 6 apartments owned by Southern Housing Group (SHG housing association). Once rife with anti-social behaviour and psychological violence. Here I research specific areas of Evolution and Psychology.
Robsons Yard Flats

(1) Cycle route begins at Robsons Yard Flats in the Tower Hamlets area of Dover, then: Athol Terrace (Eastern Docks) - Seafront Promenade - Prince of Wales Pier (Western Docks) - Robsons Yard.

This is where I do my Evolution and Psychology research! (archive)

(2) Cruise Scotland 2010 Schedules
(3) Captain’s blog entry for August 26, 2010 (10:40 pm).
(4) Wikipedia entry for MS Saga Ruby
(5) Marinetraffic entry for MS Saga Ruby

More information on the photo's original webpage:

MS Saga Ruby Cruise Ship and Neptune Catamaran, Western Docks, Dover

Also see:

To be uploaded:

MS Saga Ruby approaching the Admiralty Pier

Other Dover Saga Cruises photos include:

Click to see all Saga Ruby and Cruise Ship photos.

More Dover at Sunrise photos.

Clickable thumbnails of all harbour-related photos on the main Panoramio Images of Dover website are available on this blog at the Port of Dover Page (also linked to below the blog title).

The Panoramio photos are each accompanied by a Google Earth satellite map. However, the images are smaller than those on the Images of Dover Blog and the captions are less well formatted.

Port of Dover travel and tourism in the Western Docks.

John Latter / Jorolat

Dover Blog: The Psychology of a Small Town

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