Video has emerged today of an incident last Wednesday in which the excursion ship MV Balmoral is seen approaching Ilfracombe in heavy swell and striking a stone jetty.
The video shot by Martin Mcilvaney shows onlookers and passengers waiting to embark aboard the ship and appears on YouTube.
They appear to be alarmed as the ship rolls heavily as she approaches the jetty – striking her bow against wooden pier fender with a crash, dislodging the large baulk of timber from the pier, and then going astern to back away .
This morning Balmoral was operating on schedule and calling at Penarth to pick up passengers .
It was evident that Balmoral had sustained no serious damage in last week’s incident . Nothing more than a scrape to her paintwork on her bow was visible as she came in to berth at Penarth Pier on schedule this morning at 09:45 .
Wales on Line reports that Ilfracombe harbour master Rob Lawson said it was a “very unfortunate berthing incident.”
He said “These things can be a bit upsetting for people who see it who aren’t mariners, but being the master of a ship is a very difficult job – that’s why for most people it is the pinnacle of their career. Ships quite regularly bang the jetties, and in this case the wooden fenders did their job very well”
Heavy Atlantic swell is always a problem for ships approaching Ilfracombe and makes berthing difficult.
Continuing heavy seas at Ilfracombe on Friday morning caused the cancellation of Balmoral’s sailing from Penarth which had been due later that same day. Sailings on Saturday morning were also cancelled but that afternoon’s scheduled voyages took place as planned as did yesterday’s .
Today Balmoral is sailing as scheduled from Penarth