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Friday 13th June

CELTIC PIONEER & WELSH PIPER

mv CELTIC PIONEER     Completed her loading on schedule and sailed at her planned draught at high water at 109 last evening after some trimming to correct a port list.

High pressure caused a 35 cm drop in the height of tide, which put the ship very much on the limit for sailing, she stirring up the bottom in several places on her way down river. The weather was good with calm sea and good visibility.

Her Polish crew were pleasant and efficient, and all encountered spoke good English. The Captain said that he had enjoyed a short trip ashore into the town and had found the prices were high compared with Spain and Portugal. Her passage time to Castellon will be 7.5 days when the routine of watches (4 hours on and 8 off) will allow some rest after a fast and busy discharge at Avonmouth and load at Bideford.

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Norman Hardaker's photo of the ship on departure at High Water
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This group of holiday makers had happily watched the loading for hours over the two days.

mv WELSH PIPER also arrived discharged her cargo of sand at YELLAND QUAY and sailed again on last evenings tide. Pilot on her was Paul Gyurgyak. Celtic Pioneer was Roger Hoad and crew John Pavitt and Thom Flaxman.

Next ships expected are early next month with a log ship and a stone ship for Yelland Quay. A further Spanish cargo from Bideford is expected in August, say the shipping agents, Pike Ward.

A triathlon event will be taking place early on Sunday morning in the harbour area.