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Friday 2nd September 2016

Aristote sails, Welsh piper due.

mv ARISTOTE sailed at 1830 hrs for ROTTERDAM. The Captain was keen to reach Lands End before the winds increased which they are due to do at around 0600 hrs GMT tommorow.

The ship will unload her valuable Ball Clay cargo (1,700 tonnes) into canal barges for the onward journey to BENDORF in Germany.

He thinks that his next cargo may be maize, perhaps for Scotland (for Whisky). from Rotterdam.

The draught of the ship was 3.5 metres aft, and 3.4 metres for'd.

His contract is for 5 months on board, then 5 months at home in the Ukraine, where he has 3 grandchildren. Schools in his country close for June, July and August with state paid 2 week summer camps !

The ship was in good condition for her 33 or so years of hard work, but it was a challenge to keep her painted with her small crew of 6, and frequent port calls. And spare parts were becoming scarcer.

Her air draft can be as little as 4.5 metres when the navigating bridge is lowered, and in such cases there is a 'Pilot' hatch for the pilot to stick his head out of to see where he is going (for inland waterways of Europe.)!

He hopes to arrive at Rotterdam at mid day on Monday, weather permitting.

Local man Capt K. Stevens who was Master on a sister ship when they belonged to Crescent Shipping says that they were considered too large for Bideford in his day! Now they are considered small for Bideford, as ship capacities have incresed by a third or more.

Suction dredger mv WELSH PIPER is due for the morning tide and has requested a Pilot for 0630 hrs. She will discharge her cargo of sea dredged sand (1300 tonnes) for Notts contractors at Yelland Quay, befor returning to sea late on the same tide.

Aristote Norm sept 16
mv ARISTOTE arriving at Bideford on Thursday evening. Pic N. Hardaker
.Aristote depart sea Sep16
Aristote, sails to sea fully loaded bound Rotterdam this evening.