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Woodward explains Ben's docking delay

Passengers on the Ben-my-Chree's morning sailing from Douglas yesterday (Wednesday) had a frustrating day, as the vessel waited outside Heysham Port for around three hours before she was able to dock.

The ferry left Douglas about two hours late, due to the sea conditions, setting off at around 11am.

More passengers were taken to the Lancashire port on the fast craft Manannan, which docked at 4pm, after a two and a half hour crossing.

Some of the frustration felt by passengers on the Ben was expressed by a contributor to Mandate at Six yesterday.

But Steam Packet chief executive Mark Woodward says those on the Ben were told in advance about the late departure, and the alternative was staying in Douglas.

He says the Manannan was able to berth while the Ben was waiting off Heysham because the fast craft is much lower in the water, and more manoeuvrable.

Mr Woodward explained what happened when the Ben got to Heysham (listen to audio file below):

The Ben-my-Chree is due to leave Heysham at 8am today (Thursday), delayed from 2.15am, and arrive in Douglas at around 11.30am.

The Steam Packet says she will then sail from Douglas at 2pm, getting to Heysham at 5.30pm.

Passengers who were due to travel on this morning's 8.45 sailing from Douglas can transfer to the Manannan, which is sailing for Heysham at that time.

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