Disruption and changes to Heysham ferry

The Ben My Chree
The Ben My Chree

There will be cancellations and changes to the Ben-my-Chree service today after a failure took place on the ship at the weekend.

The Ben-my-Chree, which operates primarily on the Douglas-Heysham route, suffered a cylinder head failure on Sunday morning (April 9).

The failure required a replacement to be fitted before its scheduled return from Heysham at 2.15pm.

Repairs were impossible to improve whilst in Heysham and the Ben had to return to Douglas on one engine overnight without passengers.

Those people that were originally booked to travel at 2.15pm on Sunday were accommodated on the 2.15am Manannan sailing this morning.

The additional expertise and resources of their shore-based staff will now work to have the vessel ready for service as soon as possible.

This had necessitated the cancellation of the 8.45am departure to Heysham and the return sailing from there at 2.1pm5 today, Monday April 10.

It is expected that the Ben-my-Chree will return to service in time to take the 7.45 departure to Heysham this evening.

Passengers on the cancelled sailings are asked to contact the Reservations Department after on 01624 661661 to discuss alternative arrangements.

The freighter Arrow will be brought in to do a sailing from Heysham on Monday to ensure that vital freight services are maintained.

Mark Woodward, Chief Executive, said: “I wish to apologise to all of our passengers who have had their travel plans disrupted as a result of the failure of one of the Ben’s main engine cylinder heads.

“The Ben is an extremely reliable vessel operating an intensive schedule and has done so for more than 18 years.

“Even with the most rigorous maintenance program there are unfortunately equipment failures from time to time. We are committed to minimising the inconvenience to our customers and are making every effort to ensure a speedy return to service.”