Friday 31st July 2015

Countess Anna finally sails.

mv Countess Anna completed loading last evening 45 minutes before high water with 2550 tonnes of Ball Clay in two grades for Castellon in Spain.

Unfortunately the harbour crane had a mechanical issue after loading about one third of the cargo, and a substitute specialist JST mobile crane was organised to complete the job on time. (Hired by Evans Transport, the Stevedores.) The crane drove overnight from Grimsby to Bideford, and started its journey to another job at Boston last evening.

The draught of the ship was read as 4.86m aft and 4.8m ford

The vessel sailed with TDC Pilot R Hoad aboard, but due to a large cut in the tidal prediction of half a metre (despite no excessively high atmospheric pressure), and a delay on departure, the vessel was taken to a safe river berth overnight off Westleigh Village (where large ships were laid up during the recession many years ago) before negotiating the turn and shallows off Babcock Appledore shipyard.

The passage was resumed early this morning, with departure 23 minutes before high water Bideford. The ship cleared the estuary at 0640 hours, and has a passage time of eight days approx.to Castellon. The Russian Master said that he was looking forward to hotter weather and the longer passage to the Mediterranean.


Pilot R. Hoad pryor to departure Bideford Quay. Photo M. Pryer
CountessAnnaat WestleighJly15
Countess Anna departs Westleigh . photo Norman Hardaker
Countess Anna leaving Bideford Quay. M. Pryer