64th Annual General Meeting - Cobh, Ireland - May 2011
During the AGM weekend in Cobh, Ireland, photographer Jim McFaul snapped some very interesting images, which we are pleased to present here.
01. Cobh, the venue for the 2011 AGM hosted by the local branch, is a very picturesque part of Ireland steeped in both Irish and Maritime history with more than its fair share of tragedy. Dominating the town is the Gothic revival catherdral of St. Colman. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
02. The Victorian multi-coloured terraces on the seafront face out onto one of the world's largest natural harbours. Cobh was renamed Queenstown after a visit by Queen Victoria in 1850 but reverted to Cobh in 1921 after Irish Independence. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
03. Looking out from Spy Hill above the town and across the harbour, the Atlantic is in the far distance while Spike Island, in the centre, dominates the entrance with its fortress . Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
04. Looking to the right of this, Haulbowline Island with its naval basin comes into view. Formerly a major Royal Navy base, after Independence it became the headquarters of the fledgling Irish Navy. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
05. Further left are restored buildings from the Royal Navy era. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
06. Cobh is associated with quite a number of major events in maritime history. THe best known of these being on the 11th April 1912 when she was the last port of call by the White Star liner TITANIC. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
07. Many of the photographs of TITANIC that remain to us today were taken by a Jesuit priest Father Brown who took the short voyage from Southampton to Cobh. Despite an offer by a wealthy family to pay his passage to the States, his superiors cabled him with the terse message "Get off that ship!" A message that probably saved his life and the collection of photos. This plaque commemorates his subsequent stay at the Bonavista Hotel and is one of many similar plaques that can be seen on the TITANIC trail through the town. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
08. Just over three years later came the tragic loss of the Cunard liner LUSITANIA torpedoed on 7th May 1915 by U-20 off the Old Head of Kinsale, not far from Cobh, with the loss of 1198 lives from the 1959 aboard. Many of the survivors and bodies were brought into what was then Queenstown by local fishing boats with bodies being interred in local graveyards. Anger against the sinking precipitated the US's entry into the war. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
09. Cobh has also seen much sorrow and sadness in times of peace as it was the very last sight of Ireland for many emigrants leaving for the States and Canada. While emigration was at its height in the years following the Irish Famine of 1845, large numbers continued to emigrate into modern times to avoid hardship at home and sek a better life. This statute on the quayside at Cobh portrays 15 year old Annie Moore with her two brothers. She was the first person to be processed at the new immigration centre which opened on the 1st January 1892 at Ellice Island in the USA, and the first of 12 million emigrants of all nations that followed her before the centre closed in 1924. Annie Moore has since become an iconic figure of Irish emigration. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
10. The waterfront gives close up views of ships proceeding to the passenger terminal at Cobh or to ports up the River Lee as far as Cork City. Early on Friday 13th May 2011 the Offshore Patrol Boat L.E. AISLING passes inbound for Haulbowline. L.E. is the Irish equivalent of HMS or USS and means Irish Ship. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
11. A regular tender service operates between Cobh and the Naval Base using the tender DAVID F. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
12. TURBOT BANK and AGHADA’s duties include assisting with the berthing and rope handling of visiting cruise ships. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
13. KORIANGI passes inbound later in the day. She was built at Emden in 1993 for the White Sea and Onega Shipping Company, Sankt Petersburg but is now under the Panamanian flag. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
14. The Cobh Branch's excellent arrangements for the AGM weekend included a comprehensive selection of trips for visiting members. One of thes, on the Saturday morning was to Spike Island calling in briefly on the way at the Naval Basin at Haulbowline. In the basin LE AISLING lies outside of LE NAIMH. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
15. LE AISLING was completed in 1980 at the now defunct Verolme shipyard at Cobh. The last of in a class of three, the others being AOIFE and EMER. The larger NIAMH is the flagship of the Irish Navy. Delivered by Appledore Shipbuilders in 2001 as one of two sisters. In 2002 she undertook a goodwill visit to the Far East. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
16. LE ORLA was originally HMS SWIFT, one of five PEACOCK class patrol vessels built to guard Hong Kong waters. She was purchased by the Irish Navy in 1988 together with sister SWALLOW which was renamed CIARA. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
17. Each ship has a unique and quirky funnel badge; this is LE ORLA's. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
18. LE EMER, a sister to AISLING. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
19. Having completed a sweep of the Naval Basin we continue to Spike Island which guards the entrance to Cobh harbour. At times it has been a fortress, prison, deportation centre, Army barracks and youth detention centre, the latter until 2004. It is now being restored as a tourist centre. This is the main entrance to Mitchell’s Fort. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
20. The Parade Ground inside the fort can now be used for public concerts. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
21. Some of the derelict buildings. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
22. Members of the World Ship Society party. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
23. A large cannon and the church within the fortress. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
24. St. Coleman's cathedral and the brightly painted terraces of Cobh seen from Spike Island. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
25. Returning to Cobh, the Cork Harbour Authority’s tug GERRY O’SULLIVAN passes by. Delivered by Spanish builders in 1996. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
26. Followed by the ALEX which was built 1996 at the East Isle Shipyard Ltd in Canada as the ATLANTIC FIR for J. D. Irving. She is now owned by the Lee Towage Ltd, Cork. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
27. During the refreshment break in the afternoon’s formal AGM proceedings at the Sirius Centre, delegates were able to watch the inbound tanker STOLT SHEARWATER. She is a chemical tanker built at La Spezia in 1998. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
28. While from the other direction comes Brittany Ferries PONT-AVEN departing for Roscoff from her berth just upstream at the main commercial port of Ringaskiddy. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
29. After a successful AGM, the following morning, Sunday 15th, sees the new look GRAND PRINCESS arriving. This was her first call at a European port since the “trolley handle” containing the Skywalker’s Lounge was removed from over her stern, the aim being to improve handling and cut fuel costs. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
30. The 2008 built ELBFEEDER passes inwards while the GRAND PRINCESS is berthed. She has a capacity of 974 TEU. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
31. Sunday’s popular trip was a visit to the Irish Naval Base on Haulbowline . On the way there the two main venues for the AGM week-end were passed, the Watersedge Hotel on the left and the Sirius Convention Centre on the right. Photo: Jim McFaul,May 2011.
32. On arrival at Haulbowline, one of the guns mounted on the quayside generated some discussion as to its type and providence. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
33. As guests of the Irish Navy we were given an extensive guided tour of the base. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
34. Part of the base is a Naval College. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
35. Newly restored buildings on the waterfront date back to the Victorian and Royal Navy era. Moored against the quay are the small Naval tenders SEABHAC (Hawk), FIACH DUBH (Raven) and AINE LAOI. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
36. After being treated by the Irish Navy to an excellent meal in the very modern naval mess, the party made its way to the adjacent National Maritime College of Ireland where the sea survival facility is used to train mariners, air-sea rescue and oil rig platform workers amongst other in maritime safety techniques. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
37. Within seconds the placid pool could be turned into a raging wave tossed sea, a helicopter fuselage could even be dropped in by hoist to teach under water escape procedures. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
58. Another impressive facility was the full sized bridge simulator and navigation trainer which could replicate the bridge on many varieties of vessels against a backdrop of many ports and a wide range of weather conditions from calm to hurricane and driving snow. Members of the party were invited to try their skill at navigating in the port of New York but I’m afraid there were quite a few vessels sunk that day. Photo: Gill McFaul, May 2011.
38. After a very full day and a brief call at the port of Ringaskiddy the party arrived back by coach in Cobh just as GRAND PRINCESS prepared to depart. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
39. Soon she is disappearing down the harbour before turning behind Spike island out into the Atlantic. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
40. while the pilot returns to Cobh on the cutter SONIA. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
41. On the morning of the 16th May Fastnet Lines JULIA arrives from Swansea. She was originally OLAU BRITANNIA of 1982 and later served as BAYARD and CHRISTIAN IV before taking up a short lived service in 2008 as JULIA between Helsinki and St. Petersburg. She was acquired by Fastnet Line in 2009. Unfortunately the Fastnet service has also recently been terminated. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
42. GRANDE SCANDINAVIA was built at Koje in 2001 for the Grimaldi group. She can carry 4716 cars. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
43. Just above Cobh the GLENBROOK operates a service across the River Lee between Carrigaloe and Passage West. GLENBROOK was originally Caledonian Steam Packet’s LOCHALSH built at Newport, Wales in 1971. She was purchased by Cross River Ferries Ltd, Cork in 1992. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
44. Seen from Carrigaloe HELSINKI is discharging at Passage West. Her hull was built at Galati in Romania but completed at Foxhol, Netherlands, in 1997, Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
45. Near the Passage West end of the ferry crossing the paddle shaft of SIRIUS is on display. SIRIUS, 700 grt, was the first steamer to cross the Atlantic. Prior to that she had just been a local Irish Sea ferry and departed from Passage West on her first transatlantic crossing on 4th April 1838 captained by local man Richard Roberts. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
46. Further down the Lee at Monkstown and looking across towards Cobh, ANETTE is seen berthed at the old Verolme Dockyard site at Rushbrooke which closed in 1984. ANETTE is in the process of changing hands, shortly afterwards being renamed AYRESS. She had been built at Brake in 1979 as the ANTARES. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
47. Further along the same quay is the former Rotterdam tug BREEDBANK. Between 1976 and 1978 she was chartered to Alexandra Towing as the CANADA. She is now owned by Marine Transport Services, Cork. Several lifeboats on the quay were also of interest to some members. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
48. COSTA DELIZIOSA arriving on the Tuesday 17th May. Completed for Costa Line by the Breda Shipyard, Venice in 2010, her forward section was built at Ancona and towed to Venice. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
49. COSTA DELIZIOSA turning in the river which does not seem much wider at this point than the length of the ship. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
50. Finally it’s time to go and on the way back to the airport the EEMSHORN is seen at Cork City. She had passed Cobh several days earlier fully loaded. Photo: Jim McFaul, May 2011.
In closing, our thanks to the Cobh Branch for a splendid weekend — we thoroughly enjoyed it.