The ship photographer always has one eye on local tide times, and just to cause frustration many of the most interesting ships come & go under the cover of darkness. Some question whether this is a deliberate action on the part of the port authorities?!
Then there's the weather! Somehow the light is never right, too bright or too dark. This can usually be overcome, but driving wind throwing spray in the direction of the camera lens is the big enemy. However for those fearless enough to brave the storm, the reward can often be the most exciting images.
Enough of the excuses, here's where you'll find the latest photos. This is my best attempt at recording recent ship movements, but not a complete one. Apologies for the variable image quality but the sun doesn't shine every day in Cumbria.
Some heritage locomotive coverage is included on occasions when shipping is quiet.
"AMADEUS AQUAMARIJN" at Silloth, 10th Jul 2018
Inbound from Rotterdam on a dull morning with Criffel visible in the background across the Solway.
Built in 2003 as CRESCENT RHINE her last name was RMS RHENUS.
The 2,700ton DWT vessel is carrying a cargo of fertiliser for the local supplier.
The gallery shows her passing into Marshall Dock and onward into New Dock where she is turned towards the unloading quay.
"LADY ARIANE" at Workington, 4th Jul 2018
Inbound from Inverness on a calm summer's evening.
The Dutch owned general cargo vessel is on time charter to 'Scotline'. In the background of the photo to the right can be seen the Iggesund paperboard mill, the final destination of the round timber cargo. LADY ARIANE has also made deliveries of baled wood pulp from the Netherlands to Workington
The 88m, 3,700ton DWT vessel was built in 2015 in Groningen and appeared in good order. The gallery shows her passing the south pier & manoeuvring in the harbour basin.
"BORNHOLM" at Workington, 3rd Jul 2018
The first visit of the cement carrier.
All imported powdered cement is currently sourced from Lisbon & delivered by a variety of companies.
BORNHOLM belongs to 'KGJ Cement'. The company operates the world's largest independent fleet of pneumatic cement carriers. Those of less than 6,000tons are operated as a joint venture with 'Eric Thun (AB)'. The 'JTCement' funnel logo is a reflection of this association.
Built in 2008 as the general cargo vessel FLINTERFORTUNE, she was converted to a 4,500ton DWT cement carrier in 2014. Now Dutch registered, the remnants of her previous names FLINTERFORTUNE and FORTUNE can still be seen. The gallery shows her passing the south pier and reversing towards the dock entrance.
"STROOMBANK" at Workington, 2nd Jul 2018
A midday arrival in bright sunshine from Aveiro, Portugal.
The Dutch registered (Delfzijl) 4,550ton DWT vessel was making one of a regular delivery of baled bleached wood pulp from Portugal. It is used for the production of paperboard at the local Iggesund mill. The vessel, built in 2009, is one of a fleet of eleven owned by 'Pot Shipping'. The website has a link showing current positions of the whole fleet in addition to their usual technical details,
"AYRESS" at Silloth, 29th Jun 2018
Inbound from Ardcastle, Loch Fyne with round timber.
The 1,600ton DWT vessel owned by 'Coast Lines Shipping' of Cork operates mainly between the South of Scotland & Ireland. This was her first visit to Silloth. She is branded 'Timber Link' reflecting the majority of her cargos.
Built in Germany in 1979 she is registered in Portsmouth on the Caribbean island of Dominica.
The gallery shows her approach, entrance to the dock, manoeuvring towards her berth & commencement of unloading.
"STEFAN K." at Workington, 28th Jun 2018
At the quayside unloading aggregate.
The 'ALSTERSHIP' vessel had arrived on the previous night's tide from Belfast. Twenty four hours later she was unloaded & ready for the return sailing to Belfast.
"EMMA" at Silloth, 25th Jun 2018
Manoeuvring towards the unloading quay having just arrived on the morning tide.
The 3,500 ton DWT vessel was inbound from Sillamae, Estonia with a cargo of fertiliser.
The 7day sailing from the Baltic was via the North Sea and West of Scotland. Calm conditions allowed her to take a route passing Skye then via the Sound of Islay.
The 90m vessel built in 2007 appeared in excellent condition; she belongs to the 'Wagenborg' fleet.
After turning in New Dock she was berthed at the south quay.
"EEMS SEA" at Silloth, 19th Jun 2018
Outbound for Lochaline, W.Scotland.
The 2,650ton DWT Dutch registered vessel is operated by 'Amasus Shipping'. She was built in 2010 in Vietnam as EEMS SPACE. A first visit for the ship which had arrived the previous day with fertiliser from Hamburg.
"ARKLOW VIKING" at Workington, 18th Jun 2018
Inbound from Lisbon on a blustery afternoon.
Arklow's most recent addition to the fleet, launched in February 2018, arrived with a full load of powdered cement from Portugal Keen to enter port the approach was begun 90min before high water. The 87m, 5,100ton DWT vessel coped well with the strong southwesterly but after entering the harbour basin veered towards the north pier. This unusual course shown in final photo of the gallery was soon corrected & the vessel manoeuvred to enter dock bow first.
"HUNTEBORG" at Workington, 15th Jun 2018
Outbound on a grey, breezy afternoon.
The second visit of the 'Wagenborg' vessel bringing pipework from Almeria for United Utilities' Thirlmere water abstraction project.
The 114m, 5,650ton DWT vessel had spent 3days at the port. Having just finished unloading she was keen to get away to Wandelaar to await orders.
The gallery shows her manoeuvring past the north pier into the Solway accompanied by pilot tug DERWENT.
"FLUVIUS AXE" at Silloth, 5th Jun
Heading south for Dublin on the afternoon tide.
The 3,200ton DWT vessel had arrived the previous day with fertiliser from Belgium. She is one of nine vessels owned by 'EXE Shipping' based in Devon. The ship was built in 1998 as ARKLOW SEA and has since changed hands a number of times with name changes of BBS SEA & PS SEA. The gallery shows the Silloth pilot boarding in preparation to depart. Shortly afterwards the ship exits the port passing into the Solway heading for Workington & then Ireland.
"WILSON VALENCIA" at Workington, 4th Jun 2018
Outbound for Londonderry. The 6,100ton DWT, 114m vessel is larger than most 'Wilson' ships seen locally. The ex NIKLAS G. is on time charter. Photo courtesy of 'Solway Shipping'.
Workington 2nd Jun 2018 - afternoon ship movements
An exceptionally crowded scene off the port at high tide. Below, STOLT SEAGULL is seen being piloted out of the port with LIVA GRETA & SCOT PIONEER in the background. WILSON LIVERPOOL, bound for Silloth & WILSON VALENCIA are out of shot.
The gallery covers the three ship movements of the afternoon tide. Unfortunately visibility was poor. LIVA GRETA outbound for Fishnish to load with timber for a return trip. STOLT SEAGULL outbound for Antwerp with a full load of recovered oil products. SCOT PIONEER inbound with baled wood pulp from Vlissingen.
"STOLT SEAGULL" at Workington, 31st May 2018
Inbound from Stanlow to collect waste oil.
The 100m, 5,800ton DWT tanker was built in Portugal in 1997 as 'MULTITANK BRASILIA'. She now belongs to 'Stolt-Nielsen' who operate a fleet of more than 150 vessels. The Cardiff registered vessel is 1 of 16 operating within Europe; all are UK registered & between 4 & 6,000ton DWT.
The gallery shows the approach past the south pier followed by a turn in the harbour basin in preparation to reverse through the dock entrance.
"ARKLOW FUTURE" at Workington, 28th May 2018
Inbound from Lisbon with powdered cement. Seen opposite a navigation light in Workington harbour basin. The vessel looked in good shape as is usual with the 'Arklow' fleet. The 90m, 4,500ton DWT vessel was built in Spain in 2008.
"SCOT TRADER" at Workington, 23rd May 2018
Outbound for Corpach after delivering timber from Scrabster. TRADER is one of the less frequent visitors from the 'Scotline' fleet. This was her first visit of the year and she didn't call once during 2017.
"EIDER" at Workington, 19th May 2018
Inbound from Dordrecht, Netherlands with furnace bottom ash for the construction industry. The 3,600ton DWT general cargo vessel is a new visitor to the port.
She bears the 'ES' logo indicating 'Strahlmann Shipping' which comprises a fleet of about 50 vessels.
"ELKE W" at Silloth, 12th May
A morning arrival from the Estonian port of Sillamae with fertiliser; the first delivery from the Baltic port which is growing in importance. The 7day sailing was via the North Sea & West of Scotland. ELKE W carries the logo of 'Andre Wieczorek Shipping' and is listed under management of 'Wagenborg'. The 83m, 3,500ton DWT vessel was built in 2006 & is registered in St.John's (Antigua & Barbuda).
"WILSON LEITH" at Silloth, 10th May 2018
At the quayside having arrived from Klaipeda via Ayr with fertiliser. At 3,500ton DWT, the Maltese (Valletta) registered vessel is one of Wilson's 65 mid-range fleet. She was ready for departure the following morning to France in ballast.
"CWIND ENDURANCE" at Workington, 8th May 2018
The windfarm service boat seen inbound from Robin Rigg.
'CWind' is the latest company to win the contract to maintain the Robin Rigg turbines. Previously this was held by 'EON'. ENDURANCE is the most modern of three CWind vessels stationed at Workington. Built in 2014, the 20m vessel has a composite hull with water-jet propulsion for high manoeuvrability. The Rolls Royce jets provide a top speed of 20knots.
"FRI MARLIN" at Workington, 8th May 2018
Shortly after the departure of CYPRUS CEMENT (see below), the general cargo vessel was piloted out.
The partly unloaded vessel waited at Workington anchorage overnight before being taken to Silloth to offload the remaining cargo of French wheat. She had arrived at Workington on 7th May, see below.
"CYPRUS CEMENT" at Workington, 8th May 2018
Poor visibility after the drizzle had eased for the departure to Germany.
The 5,500ton DWT vessel had made her first visit with a delivery from Lisbon. The vessels belongs to 'KGJ Cement'. The company operates the world's largest independent fleet of pneumatic cement carriers. Those of less than 6,000tons are operated as a joint venture with 'Eric Thun (AB)'; the 'JTCement' funnel logo is a reflection of this.
The departure proceeded without incident unlike that from Levanger, Norway in July 2013 when she collided with pleasure craft moored in the marina (YouTube Video). No one was injured but the vessel was detained for an investigation.
"FRI MARLIN" at Workington, 7th May 2018
Arriving from St.Nazaire, France.
The delivery of wheat destined for Silloth Mill was to be partly offloaded at Workington due to the arrival coinciding with a cycle of neap tides affecting access to Silloth.
The 88m 3,000ton DWT vessel bears the funnel emblem of the 'KOPERVIK GROUP' but is not listed on their website's fleet list.
The gallery shows the ship passing the south pier and turning in the harbour basin in preparation to reverse through the dock entrance.
"ZAPADNYY" at Silloth, 30th Apr 2018
Inbound with a full load of molasses..
The tanker is difficult to manoeuvre in tight spaces but a well-judged entrance to Marshal Dock was achieved. Only on passing through the narrow gated New Dock entrance did she drift a little off course.
The 30 year old Belize City registered vessel was making her fourth visit of the year. Molasses are sourced throughout Europe, on this occasion from Amsterdam. During her lifetime the vessel has been modernised to meet changing requirements and overall appears to be the most suitable for deliveries to Silloth.
"VITA" at Silloth, 30th Apr 2018
Seen unloading having arrived in the early hours with a cargo of fertiliser from the Russian port of Vyborg.
Situated in the Baltic Sea near the Finnish border this is one of the most distant ports serving Silloth.
The 4,100ton DWT vessel, built in the Netherlands in 1990, is one of the small fleet operated by the Latvian company 'Alpha Shipping'. She departed 24hrs after arrival in ballast to Cork, Ireland.
"WILSON LIVERPOOL" at Silloth, 20th Apr 2018
Inbound from Klaipeda with fertiliser on a blustery afternoon.
The 90m, 3.800ton DWT general cargo vessel was built in 2011 as RMS ROTTERDAM. She's now on time charter to 'Wilson' as one of their fleet of more than 100 vessels. She arrived off Silloth in good time for entry at high water. She was turned & lined-up to pass into Marshal Dock followed by New Dock where she was berthed behind ALDEBARAN (see below).
"ALDEBARAN" at Silloth, 20th Apr 2018
Seen being moved along the quay in readiness for berthing WILSON LIVERPOOL at her stern. It's a slow, careful manoeuvre easing her along the quay using ropes.
The 83m 2,100ton DWT general cargo vessel is the ex FEHN CALAIS. She is now one of 18 ships owned by 'Baltnautic' of Lithuania.
She had arrived on the early morning tide with wheat from La Pallice, France, and was ready for departure on the next morning tide.
"JEANETTE" at Workington, 19th Apr 2018
Inbound from the Mediterranean port of Almeria with pipework for United Utilities Thirlmere water abstraction project.
Seen arriving on a disappointingly dull afternoon after a 6day sailing from Spain.
The cargo consists of plastic-lined pipework manufactured by 'Noksel' at their site at Lorca, 70miles from the port of Almeria.
The 110m, 6,000ton DWT vessel was built in 2007. She is owned by 'ANET Shipping' of Delfzijl and managed by 'Wagenborg'.
The gallery shows a line being attached to pilot tug 'DERWENT' for extra control in the blustery conditions.