News Diary

Monday 28 October – Sunday 3 November 2019

No coaster activity to report

Traffic sightings in the bay included Irish Ferries Epsilon on the Dublin – Cherbourg route and the research vessel Mallett.

Visitors to the port this week included the French tug Tsm Kermor and beam trawler Bridget Carmel.

Monday 21 – Sunday 27 October 2019

Coaster activity this week included a call by Ceg Cosmos, which looks like it is having a gantry fitted for either a self-discharging excavator or crane!

A notable caller this week was the French tug Tsm Kermor, she arrived on Thursday afternoon from Newhaven, after towing the work platform Excalibur from Newhaven to work on the Met mast south of Wicklow head.

Monday 14 – Sunday 20 October 2019

Coaster activity at Wicklow included a call by Scot Isles.

Visitors to the port included a call by the customs cutter RCC Faire on Friday, the vessel is one of two operated by Revenue’s Maritime Unit that patrols our coastline. The objective of the customs cutters is the prevention, detection, interception and seizure of controlled drugs, fiscal goods, arms, ammunition, explosives, prohibited and restricted goods smuggled or illegally imported into, or intended to be exported out of, the State or the European Union (EU).

Traffic sightings this week included the UK work vessel Toplander heading north after an overnight stop in Arklow. The research vessel Corystes was also noted in the bay on Friday morning, she was working along the coast after a call at Dublin port. Irish Ferries W.B Yeats also returned to Dublin on Saturday morning after dry docking at Dunkirk.

Monday 7 – Sunday 13 October 2019

Coaster activity at Wicklow port this week included a call by Anne Dorte.

Traffic sightings included the ferry Epsilon working the Dublin – Cherbourg run, while the larger W.B Yeats was noted on Saturday afternoon southbound for Dunkirk for drydocking. A notable sighting off the Codling was the Belgian Frigate Louise Marie (F981), which made a courtesy visit to Dublin port . The tug Mts Vector was noted northbound on Saturday afternoon towing the work platform Aran 250 from Arklow to Greenore.

Monday 30 September – Sunday 6 October 2019

Coasters noted at Wicklow this week included Kaja, Ceg Galaxy and Liva Greta.

Traffic sightings included the ferry Epsilon, which will be covering the Dublin – Cherbourg route for a short period in place of W.B Yeats, which is scheduled for annual dry docking.

The Welsh hills were visible from high ground around Wicklow on Wednesday evening.

Filming by Deadpan Pictures of a new comedy/drama “The South Westerlies”  which will be broadcast on RTE is taking place around Wicklow town and various locations including Brittas bay at the moment. Crowded Background Extras are looking for extras of all ages, looks, ethnicities, shapes and sizes. No previous experience needed. Some specific extras required are surfers and fishermen. Shooting will continue until November.

The Wendy raft was lifted out of the water for the Winter during the week. Wicklow Sailing Club yachts were also taken off the moorings near the North pier due to bad weather on Tuesday, which also caused some damage to piers at Bray harbour and some boats sank at their moorings.

Storm (Hurricane) Lorenzo arrived on Thursday evening on Ireland’s West coast, but thankfully did not cause too much damage as it was decreasing in strength as it arrived from the Azores. The Hurricane was responsible for the loss of crew on a large tugboat that went down in the Atlantic last week, thankfully survivors were taken onboard a ship, which was making its way to Ireland.

Monday 23 – Sunday 29 September 2019

Coaster callers at Wicklow port this week included Scot Trader, Ceg Cosmos, Ayress and Thea Marieke.

Visitors to the port included the German yacht Torbas and Irish sailing vessel Ilen on Wednesday morning, the vessel has only recently returned from a voyage to Greenland. As far as l am aware this is the first visit by the 90year old sailing ship.

Traffic in the bay during the week included the work vessel James northbound. Coastal traffic included the container ship Arx on her weekly call to Dublin and Irish ferries W.B Yeats on the Cherbourg run. The research vessel Cefas Endeavour was noted working close to shore on Tuesday.

Monday 16 – Sunday 22 September 2019

Coaster callers noted this week included Elena and Ceg Cosmos.

Visitors this week included the beam trawler Bridget Carmel and mussel trawlers Emerald Gratia, Rona and Marie Lena.

Traffic sightings included the Naval vessel LE James Joyce north bound for Dublin, and the Cunard liner Queen Elizabeth. Notable sightings included the Greencastle ferry Frazer Mariner southbound on Tuesday for a night stopover at Arklow port, while on passage for drydocking at New Ross.

Arklow Port
The tug Mts Vector arrived with the jack up barge Aran 250 on Monday morning.

Monday 9 – Sunday 15 September 2019

Coaster callers at Wicklow this week included Tina, Elena and Ayress.

Traffic sighting’s included Thun London southbound after a call to Dublin on Thursday. Notable Ro/Ro traffic included Ysaline and Laureline making their weekly calls from mainland Europe to Dublin. Other traffic noted were the liners Crown Princess, Regal Princess and Seabourn Ovation.

The Tellus Otter Survey aircraft was noted over Wicklow head on Tuesday afternoon, as it continues to map the country.

Arklow Port
The Mersey Museum tug Brocklebank visited Arklow port during the week for a private function on Friday, the small cruiser St Bridget was also noted in the port on Friday.

Monday 2 – Sunday 8 September 2019

Coaster callers noted at Wicklow during the week included TINA, Ceg Cosmos and Ceg Galaxy.

Visitors to the port this week included the ketch Maybe and the beam trawler Bridget Carmel.

The ketch Bessie Ellen also anchored in the bay on Monday night and departed the following day for Fowey in Cornwall, after a cruise around the Hebrides. Another tall ship Lady of Avenel was noted southbound in the bay on Wednesday afternoon.

Notable traffic included the classic liner Astoria southbound out of Dublin on Friday evening.

Monday 26 August – Sunday 1 September

Coaster callers at Wicklow during the week included Ayress, Ceg Galaxy and Scot Carrier.

Traffic sightings were good with plenty of liners out of Dublin, they included Ocean Majesty, Viking Sun and Europa. Container ships noted were Romy Trader and Samskip Express. Ro/Ro traffic included Schelde Highway, Vespertine and Ysaline. The Irish ferry W.B Yeats was also noted on the Dublin – Cherbourg run.

Aviation traffic noted over the bay included a classic De Havilland DH104 Dove on Saturday afternoon, the aircraft which dates from the mid-1940s was in service with the RAF before going into commercial service.

Monday 19 – Sunday 25 August 2019

Coaster callers noted this week at Wicklow Port included Ceg Cosmos and Ceg Galaxy.

Traffic sightings included the tanker Thun Genius, containerships Arx and Bg Emerald, ro/ro ships Peregrine and Ysaline and the ferry W.B Yeats. A notable sighting was the Dublin port tug Shackleton returning after a spell in dry dock at Cork.

Wicklow RNLI launched both lifeboats on Saturday morning to assist a motor cruiser fouled in ropes about ten miles off the Coast. The boat was towed to safety by the volunteer crews

Monday 12 – Sunday 18 August 2019

Coaster callers this week included Thea Marieke and Ceg Universe.

Visitors to the port noted included the Beam trawler Bridget Carmel.

Traffic sightings included the tanker Bit Eco, car carrier Schelde Highway, containership Bernard Schepers, ferry W.B Yeats and the large Ro/Ro Ysaline. A notable sighting was the utility vessel Fastnet Sound, southbound out of Dublin for her homeport of Waterford.

The sailing vessel Pelican of London anchored in the bay for a few hours on Friday morning, she weighed anchor around lunchtime to resume passage south for Waterford.

The CIL tender Granuaile was noted working on the South Codling Buoy on Sunday morning, work was completed before lunch and she was noted heading south.

49th Anniversary of tragic accident over Wicklow bay remembered
On the afternoon of 16 August 1970, a formation of replica biplanes accompanied by a film crew in an Alouette II helicopter arrived over Wicklow bay. The plan was to get some aerial scenes for a new movie in production called Zeppelin.

During the filming a biplane and the helicopter collided in view of many spectators watching from various locations around Wicklow. My earliest recollection on the pier is the sheer panic in the aftermath and people shouting to launch the lifeboat.

Sadly, the pilot of the biplane and the four occupants of the helicopter died that day. I remember a memorial mass was held on the Packet pier a few days later for the five men.

Monday 5 – Sunday 11 August 2019

Coaster callers to report this week included Eastern Vanquish, Ceg Galaxy, Alizee and Thea Marieke.

Visitors to the port included the beam trawler Bridget Carmel and historic lifeboat J.W Archer.

Traffic sightings in the bay included the Cunard liner Queen Elizabeth – out of Dublin for Southampton. The bulker Sotka northbound for Dublin and the Ro/Ro Celine.

Wicklow Rowing Club hosted their Annual Regatta on the Bank Holiday Monday, the Men’s Senior Race was won by St Patrick’s, while the Wicklow Senior Ladies took line honour’s in their race.

Monday 29 July – Sunday 4 August 2019

No Coaster callers to report

Visitors to the port included the former Wicklow RNLI Lifeboat J.W Archer and Bridget Carmel.

Traffic sightings included Irish Ferries W.B Yeats, the containership Arx and the tanker Thun Lidkoping. The SL44 racing boat Allblack was noted southbound in the bay on Monday, the endurance racing powerboat is based at Arklow and operated by Allblack Racing team, who have set themselves a three-year goal of achieving 11 UIM (Union Internationale Motonautique) offshore ocean endurance long distance and speed records.

Aviation traffic over the Wicklow Coast included the Tellus Survey Aircraft, Coast Guard S92 helicopter and an Air Corps CASA Maritime Patrol aircraft.

On Saturday 3rd August a ceremony took place at the Castle Wall, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a tragic accident at Wicklow harbour, which occurred at the Packet pier on the 3rd August 1969. Three occupants of a car sadly lost their lives, thankfully a fourth person survived, and she travelled to Wicklow today with her family for the memorial ceremony.

Relatives, friends and many local people including some who were present at the accident scene, gathered at the Castle wall at 5pm, for the blessing of a commemorative plaque, specially commissioned by the families to mark the 50th anniversary of the accident

Flowers and wreaths were placed by relatives at the plaque before Pat Brennan recited a poem, he wrote about the tragic accident. The ceremony concluded with local clergy blessing the plague, which overlooks the Packet pier.

Many residents of Castle Street including my parents still remember this sad event that took place over the August Bank Holiday 50 years ago today.

Monday 22 – Sunday 28 July 2019

Coaster callers included Liva Greta and Scot Leader.

Visitors to the port this week included the beam trawlers Bridget Carmel and Mary Kate.

Traffic noted in the bay included the work vessel James -northbound for Dun Laoghaire and the Dublin port tug Shacketon southbound for drydocking in Cork.

Monday 15 – Sunday 21 July 2019

Coaster callers this week included the Ceg Universe, Ceg Galaxy and Ceg Cosmos.

Visitors to the port this week were the Polish yacht Brego and the former Wicklow RNLI Lifeboat J.W Archer.

Traffic noted in the bay included the regular’s Peregrine, Ysaline, Schelde Highway and containership Arx. Notable sightings were the tanker Sc Chongqing and the recently built liner Spirit of Discovery.

Monday 8 – Sunday 14 July 2019

Coasters noted at Wicklow port this week included Crownbreeze, Ceg Universe and Isidor.

Traffic sightings noted were Irish Ferries W.B Yeats on the usual Dublin – Cherbourg run. The RNLI Severn class lifeboat 17-46 also went south to Rosslare from Dun Laoghaire. The tanker Bro Nordby was also noted heading south after a call at Dublin. 

The liner Viking Sun was noted heading north for an early morning call at Dublin during the week, the larger liner Queen Vitoria was also visible offshore going south for Southampton after a cruise to Norway. Another liner, Seabourn Quest was also noted going south to Dunmore East after visiting Dublin.

Visitors to the port included the beam trawler Bridget Carmel, the former Wicklow RNLI 42’ Watson lifeboat J.W Archer and the Polish training yacht Brego.

Tellus Aerial Survey over Wicklow bay
DHC-6 Twin Otter survey aircraft (C-GSGF) was noted working over Wicklow bay on Tuesday. The aircraft is operated by the Canadian Sander Geophysics Ltd, who are carrying out the aerial survey on behalf of Geological Survey Ireland.
The survey is a national programme to gather geochemical and geophysical data across Ireland – in other words, to examine the chemical and physical properties of our soil, rocks and water. The aircraft operates at 60 metres over rural areas and will rise to 240 metres over urban areas. The project commenced in May and will continue up to late Autumn.
The de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter has a top speed of 296km/h, a wingspan of 20 metres and is powered by 2 turbo prop Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 engines. 

Air Corps AW139 helicopter ‘277’ carried out a medevac from a football pitch in Rathnew to a hospital in Dublin on Tuesday. When operating Aeromedical duties, the callsign AC112 is used. The service, a joint project between the HSE and the Defence Forces, means that NAS paramedics now have the assistance of a dedicated military helicopter for the rapid transfer of critical patients to the most suitable hospital. More details here

The Coast Guard Rescue helicopter based at Dublin (EI-ICG) carried out winch exercises with various ships in the bay during the week, on Tuesday it was noted working with Elbcarrier and W.B Yeats the following evening.

Three Air Corps helicopters took part in a Fire fighting exercise in the Wicklow mountains with Wicklow Fire Service on Tuesday. A report on the RTE TV teatime News showed AW139’s ‘274’ and ‘276’ deploy water on a simulated fire using bambi buckets, with EC135 ‘270’ providing support.

Monday 1 – Sunday 7 July 2019

Coaster callers at Wicklow port this week included Ceg Cosmos, Ceg Galaxy and Liv Greta.

Visitors to the port included the beam trawler Bridget Carmel and the former RNLI lifeboat Joseph Soar, it arrived for a short visit from Wexford on Monday morning, after attending the Wexford Maritime Festival over the weekend. The lifeboat moored alongside the East pier and has visited Wicklow on a couple of occasions in the last few years.

The swimming raft Wendy broke from its moorings in the harbour during the week and drifted ashore. It was quickly refloated and anchored again without any disruption for swimmers.
Harbourman Triathlon 2019 was held in the harbour on Sunday morning with well over 500 entries from all over Ireland. The annual event is organised by Wicklow triathlon Club.

The 70-foot UK registered yacht Vittfarne weighed anchor in the bay on Monday morning, and resumed passage north.

Traffic sightings in the bay included Irish Ferries W.B Yeats, working the Dublin – Cherbourg route. Ro/Ro ferry traffic included the Cobelfret operated Peregrine and the recently introduced Ysaline. These vessels maintain a weekly freight link between Dublin and mainland Europe.

The Dublin Airport based Coast Guard s92 helicopter (EI-ICG) was noted in the bay on a training flight on Sunday evening.

Notable sightings included the Sailing ship Pelican of London southbound out of Dublin on Tuesday afternoon, another sailing ship the Volharding built in 1886 was also noted heading north on Thursday afternoon, the vessel was recently acquired by Silvery Light Sailing, a Northern Ireland sailing charity who plan to base the Dutch Sailing Barge at Victoria dock, Newry.  We last saw the barge in Wicklow bay during a 12-day delivery voyage from Maldon, Essex to Newry in early May.

Coaster traffic included the Ayress northbound on Friday after delivering a cargo of round timber to Rosslare.
The CIL tender Granuaile was noted working on the Breeches buoy north of Wicklow harbour on Saturday morning, before continuing south to anchor off Arklow the same evening.
There was plenty of aviation activity over Wicklow bay on Saturday as aircraft and helicopters took part in a annual charity event at Newcastle airfield.

The Railway Preservation Society of Ireland ‘Sea breeze’ steam special passed through Wicklow on Sunday shortly after Midday. The train hauled by No.85 Merlin was to run from Dublin Connolly to Rosslare Europort, unfortunately the steam locomotive failed at Gorey and 071 type diesel locomotive ‘074’ was dispatched from Dublin Connolly to haul the train back to Dublin under diesel power.