VESSEL REVIEW | Manxman – Isle of Man Steam Packet Company welcomes newest flagship
South Korean shipbuilder Hyundai Mipo Dockyard has delivered a new Ro-Pax ferry ordered by the Isle of Man Government-operated shipping line Isle of Man Steam Packet Company (IOMSP).
The ferry is the third IOMSP vessel to be named Manxman, which refers to an inhabitant of the Isle of Man. It is also IOMSP’s newest flagship, replacing the ageing ferry Ben-my-Chree in this role.
Manxman is designed as a bespoke ferry to suit the needs of Isle of Man residents. The vessel will be used on twice-daily Heysham sailings throughout the year. The flexible nature of the design means that it will serve a vital year-round lifeline service to Heysham in addition to undertaking sailings to Liverpool and Belfast.
The newbuild has a steel hull, a gross tonnage of 24,161, a length of 133 metres, a beam of 26 metres, a draught of 5.2 metres, and capacity for 949 passengers and up to 495 square metres for vehicles and other freight. Four diesel engines drive electric motors connected to propellers to deliver a speed of 19 knots, and the propellers’ design allows crossings to be made with significantly reduced vibrations. Any excess electricity generated will be stored by the vessel’s onboard batteries, which will then be used during periods of higher demand or while the vessel is at berth.
The new ferry was designed with excess power to have a service speed higher than its predecessor. It is also capable of operating more efficiently while carrying 300 more passengers and 10 per cent more vehicles and having the ability to catch up on the planned schedule if there are unavoidable delays.
The passenger facilities are found on nine decks and include 40 inside and balcony cabins, toilets, changing areas, three public lounges, an exclusive lounge, a bar, a restaurant, a cafe, a retail area, and a children’s play area. The lounge options offer various seating styles such as standard forward-facing seats, side-facing airline-style seats, sofas, armchairs, and reclining chairs. Some of the lounges are fitted with panoramic windows to provide enhanced views of the outside.
All public areas on the vessel were designed to be fully wheelchair accessible. The cabins meanwhile also include those for passengers travelling with pets. Pets may also be housed in purpose-built onboard kennels with CCTV cameras, and there are even two pet lounges and a dedicated exercise area for passengers and their pets.
Manxman will be IOMSP’s primary service vessel and former flagship Ben-my-Chree will be kept on standby, operating only during peak periods or whenever the newer ferry is undergoing periodic maintenance.
|Type of vessel:||Ro-Pax ferry|
|Owner:||Isle of Man Steam Packet Company|
|Builder:||Hyundai Mipo Dockyard, South Korea|
|Hull construction material:||Steel|
|Length overall:||133 metres|
|Capacity:||495 square metres|
|Maximum speed:||19 knots|
|Type of fuel:||Diesel|
|Accommodation:||40 x passenger cabins; toilets; changing areas; public lounges; exlusive lounge; pet lounges; kennels; bar; restaurant; café; retail area; children’s play area; exercise area|
|Operational area:||Isle of Man; Liverpool, UK; Belfast, UK|