New research shows that the region's most iconic attractions of Alnwick Castle and The Alnwick Garden, Durham City, the castles of Northumberland, the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Hadrian's Wall and Durham Castle and Cathedral, and many other attractions are feeling the benefits of a flood of visitors from the number of cruise ships calling at the Port of Tyne.
Last year the Port welcomed around 50,000 cruise passengers visiting the North East to enjoy the region's countryside and coastline, visit cultural landmarks and tourism sites.
Also in the visitors' top ten excursions were Newcastle city centre, Beamish Museum, Holy Island and the Durham Dales - all listed as ‘must see' places by the Port's cruise passengers.
Voted Best Port of Call 2012 for cruise passengers, the Port of Tyne is becoming one of the UK's most popular cruise ports and this year will see operators including Fred. Olsen and Cruise and Maritime Voyages operate transit calls as well as extend their outbound destinations to include St. Petersburg, Morocco, Spain, and the Azores, while Miami-based premium cruise operator Oceania Cruises will see many more international holiday makers visit the region.
Feedback from cruise operators shows that one of the reasons for the Port of Tyne's popularity with cruise passengers is our proximity to transport links. These allow holiday makers to visit several attractions in one day and get a real taste of what our region has to offer.
Andrew Moffat, Port of Tyne Chief Executive Officer, said: "We are delighted that our partnership with cruise lines and tourism agencies is having such a positive impact and bringing more visitors into the region. The economic impact benefits our whole region from large attractions through to hotels and small businesses such as restaurants, bars and travel agencies".
Last year the total visitor numbers arriving via cruise and ferry was over 620,000 - adding around £55m Gross Value Added to the regional economy and supporting over 2,000 tourism-related jobs.
In 2015 the Port will see 27 cruise calls from international cruise lines attracted by the award-winning International Passenger Terminal and the Port's ability to handle 95% of the global cruise fleet, including vessels up to 300m in length.
David Hawke, Head of Visitor Attraction at Alnwick Castle, said the castle's popularity as a TV and film location have added to its appeal, particularly to visitors from outside the region: "We are very pleased but not surprised to see Alnwick Castle rated one of the region's top attractions by cruise passengers. We pride ourselves on offering something for everyone, from the heritage and history of the castle and its many attractions through to the contemporary setting of The Alnwick Garden.
"Visitors, particularly those from outside the UK, are keen to see it for themselves. We see a healthy spend per visitor which rises year on year and this is good news for us, the businesses we support, and the region as a whole."
Alex Jacobs, Managing Director of Northern Secrets, which specialises in holidays and tours around Northern England, Wales and Scotland, believes the wide variety of attractions is a factor in the increase in cruise stop popularity: "Some of our clients opt to visit Alnwick Castle, The Alnwick Garden and Hadrian's Wall which can all be done in a day, while others choose half-day city tours of Durham and Newcastle which are easily achievable. The income visitors generate is as important to the region as the impression they take away. We aim to give them the best possible experience so that every visitor leaves as an ambassador for the North East."
The Port's cruise business is feeling the effect of Newcastle upon Tyne being voted as the favourite UK City 2014 by The Guardian and according to a recent poll the city boasts the country's most beautiful street Grey Street in the historic heart of the City's Grainger Town.
For the city explorer, Trip Advisor voted Newcastle the third best European destination for night-life last year, beating Amsterdam, Paris and Rome.
Sarah Stewart, Chief Executive of destination marketing agency NewcastleGateshead Initiative, which promotes the area nationally and internationally to attract visitors, said: "The Port of Tyne is an important gateway for North East England. Its growing cruise business brings thousands of visitors to the region from around the world to experience NewcastleGateshead's vibrancy, culture and world-class heritage sites.
"The tourism industry is currently worth £3.6bn in total to the economy of the North East, supporting 54,000 jobs, and the cruise industry undoubtedly makes a valuable contribution to this thriving sector."
Capitalising of the breadth and range of exciting shore excursions just an hour away from port - the Port of Tyne has launched a new cruise brochure and itinerary pack, providing essential information for passengers and cruise lines and helping to ensure they have the very best visitor experience.
WORK BEGINS ON £25M QUAY EXTENSION
AT PORT OF TYNE
The Port of Tyne has appointed the main contractor for the £25m extension of Riverside Quay, the Port's multifunctional deep-sea facility at South Shields.
The main contract for over 300 metres of quay work includes a 125 metre quay extension, an upgrade of 118m of existing quay and 90m of quay wall renewal at the former McNulty site. The £18.6m contract was won by Tyneside-based Southbay Civil Engineering Ltd who will start construction this month.
This development is required to support the growth in cargo volumes being handled by the Port, including the relatively new wood pellet imports used by power stations as they convert from coal to renewable fuels.
Andrew Moffat, Port of Tyne Chief Executive Officer, said: "On the back of growth in volumes over the past few years we are investing in new infrastructure to make sure the Port is able to meet the needs of both our existing and our future customers. This is the biggest single investment we have made since we built Europe's first purpose-built wood pellet facilities back in 2010 and it will significantly increase the Port's capacity to handle increased volumes of cargoes. Extending the length of the quay will increase the berthing capacity by almost 20% enabling up to four large cargo ships to berth simultaneously.
"If we are successful in achieving our plans the added capacity provided by the extension of the quay would deliver new jobs and would add around £2 million to the regional Gross Value Added each year.
"I am delighted that a North East based company won the tender against international competition. The project itself could have a major impact in the region - during construction it will add £14.8 million to the local economy."
Enabling work began in June last year with nearly £3m million invested in underwater preparatory works and internal roads built within the Port to reduce construction traffic outside and minimise disruption for nearby businesses and residents.
The project covers some 300 metres of quay, including the construction of a brand new 125 metre quay extension with a load capacity of 10 tonnes per square metre. A 118m section of existing quay which is over 70 years old will be removed, and the old fenders will be replaced with new before the quay itself can be laid. The renewal of 90m of quay wall at the former McNulty site also marks the start of investment to refurbish the site acquired by the Port in 2013.
In total 240 steel piles up to 33m long and weighing up to 21 tonne each will be needed to support the new quay and will be driven into the river bed over the course of the project.
Paul Stephenson, Managing Director of Southbay Civil Engineering Ltd, said: "We are pleased to have won this major contract on our doorstep and delighted that our specialist civil engineering skills are put to good use with our experienced local staff and labour. It is fantastic to be part of this project to bring the Port of Tyne the vital flexibility it needs to continue to win business, supporting jobs and the North East economy."
The second of the three 167,800-ton, 4,180-passenger next-generation Royal Caribbean cruise ships, will launch in spring 2015
The ship is being built at the Meyer-Werft Shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, which is 20 miles inland.
Fully equipped at its full height of 18 decks, the individual mega-blocks of Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas have been floated into the massive building hall to be connected to construct the smartest ship in the world
Air Bubbles reduce Ship's Fuel Consumption
First Bulk Carrier Featuring MALS Delivered to ADM
31st October 2014
Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM), a US-based specialist in grain processing, has taken delivery of the first new bulk carrier developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) that uses air bubble lubrication system.
MHI's proprietary Mitsubishi Air Lubrication System (MALS) reduces frictional resistance between the vessel hull and seawater using air bubbles produced at the vessel bottom. The solution has enabled a 27% reduction in CO 2 emissions, as verified, compared to conventional bulk carriers, exceeding the target figure of 25%.
The innovative vessel was built by Oshima Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. of Nagasaki, an MHI licensing partner.
The newly delivered bulk carrier is the first of three vessels, designed to serve as grain carriers, ordered by ADM in 2011 from Sumitomo Corporation.
Delivery of the three vessels is scheduled for completion by mid-2015. The carriers are 237 meters (m) in length, 40m in width, and 12.5m in designed draught: deadweight tonnage (DWT) is approximately 95,000 tons.
The new vessel also features a new bow shape designed to reduce wave-making resistance.
For propulsion, an innovative system is adopted that effectively converts the main engine power into propulsion power by positioning fins forward of the propellers and placing special grooves in the propeller boss cap. The ship's shallow draught facilitates MALS's pursuit of energy savings and CO 2 emission reductions.
In MALS, the air blown from the vessel's bottom produces small air bubbles that cover the vessel's bottom like an 'air-carpet,' reducing friction between the hull and seawater during navigation.
The system was developed by MHI with support from ClassNK (Nippon Kaiji Kyokai) et al., and it has already been adopted in module carriers, ferries and other ships constructed by MHI.
'In this way MALS has built up a solid track record demonstrating the effectiveness of its technologies in reducing fuel consumption and easing environmental loads. Seafaring tests have already verified that MALS achieves the target level of performance in the newly delivered bulk carrier, ' MHI said in a release.
Click on the link below to see the maiden voyage of this huge hull
Floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) is a revolutionary technology that will allow Shell to access offshore gas fields that would otherwise be too costly or difficult to develop. Prelude FLNG (67.5% Shell) is the world’s first FLNG development.
Visit the link below to see the construction of the Worlds Largest Cargo Ship
For those unaware of the story, on the afternoon of 17th Nov 1962 the weather in the North Sea off the Northumberland & Durham Coast and Seaham Harbour in particular was absolutely filthy, so bad that 10 miles north at Bartrams Shipyard where I was based most workers had been sent home in the driving rain, wind, and gloom.
I remember hearing of the news as it filtered through to Sunderland
At approximately 4.00 pm the lifeboat George Elmy was called out to an inshore fisherman in trouble. All the crew of the fishing boat were successfully transferred to the lifeboat but whilst making her way back to the harbour the lifeboat capsized and every one of the lifeboat crew and all but one of the fishermen were lost.
The lifeboat ended up washed up on a nearby beach.
What happened to the wreck from that date onwards I don't know but a few years ago she resurfaced in Southern Ireland I think, and although she was in a bad way she was bought by a local Trust and brought back eventually to the boatyard of Fred Crowell in South Shields on the river Tyne, a location famous for the invention of the concept of a self righting lifeboat and for the formation of a locally funded voluntary lifeboat service in the 1790s which was 30 or 40 years before the national organisation was formed.
Over the last two years or so Fred Crowell and his boatbuilder colleagues have painstakingly researched and restored the George Elmy, where possible finding a source and using or having to recast the wonderful brass fittings and other detail on the boat.
The original target date for completion was the 50th anniversary of the tragedy four months ago but unfortunately that was too optimistic.
Over the restoration and rebuilding Fred has posted a string of very informative progress reports available on the internet for public consumption, (fred and george u tube) but yesterday she was finally completed and put in the water for engine trials on the Tyne before some time shortly making her way to Seaham Harbour to become a major attraction for the town, a tribute to those who lost their lives, and a fitting tribute to Fred and his life's work.
No doubt the progress reports will continue to be posted on the internet until she is on show at Seaham, but in the mean time I took a few pictures which I thought some of you might like to see.
The launching of George Elmy after restoration
Friday 15th March 2013
The Marine Technology Special Collection
British Ships and the Shipbuilding Industry
A Unique Historical Resource
This is truly a fabulous collection of unique technical documents from the British shipbuilding and related industries. It spans the mid-19th century to 2000 with an emphasis on the north east of England and includes the less well documented industries of marine engine building, shiprepairing and shipbreaking.
Usually Tuesdays and Thursdays 11.00 - 1500 and at other times by appointment. Please make contact to check that it will be open on the date and time of your proposed visit.
The Special Collection is housed in the Armstrong Building on Newcastle University's central campus
The Marine Technology Special Collection
School of Marine Science and Technology, Newcastle University
Room 3.32 Armstrong Building, Queen Victoria Road,
Ribbon cut on Marine School's multi-million pound improvement programme
South Tyneside College 8th February 2013
A multi-million pound improvement programme will see the next generation of seafarers instructed on the latest state-of-the-art equipment, which includes a stunning full-mission bridge simulator.
The breath-taking centre, South Shields Marine School - at South Tyneside College’s Westoe campus, South Shields – has been years in the planning and will train all ranks of maritime personnel, from cadets to officers, chief engineers to chief ETOs, masters and pilots.
It has undergone an extensive transformation including £3m on upgrading facilities throughout the marine school, £1.5m on a simulator allowing students to ‘virtually’ sail any ship into any port in the world and operate most types of complex marine plants, £0.5m on halls for marine students and £2m on general upgrades that benefit all college students -including a learning resource centre, classrooms, workshops, learning zones and a refectory.
To herald the new dawn, Captain Ian McNaught, a foremost authority on UK shipping, cut the ribbon today (Friday, February 8th 2013) in front of delighted staff, shipping company representatives and other VIP guests.
Captain McNaught, the Deputy Master of Trinity House, which is the General Lighthouse Authority for England and Wales was welcomed to the college by Chair of Governors, Les Watson who gave a short introduction before the cutting took place.
Captain McNaught congratulated the college on acting on its vision of the future needs of the maritime industry.
The former commander of the QE2 said: “I am delighted to be here to officially open the South Shields Marine School. The outstanding facilities unveiled here today will ensure the college remains at the forefront of maritime education provision.”
Lindsey Whiterod, South Tyneside College’s Principal and Chief Executive, said the revamp and launch had been essential to ensure the marine school - founded in its original form in 1861 – remained a world leader
She said: “I am so very proud of the enhanced facilities here at South Shields Marine School and all that it represents in terms of the college’s future ambition.
“For more than 150 years the college has served the needs of shipping operators who want their staff to be trained to the highest possible standards.
“That is as true today as it always has been, and we remain one of the most prestigious, highly-rated and sought after training centres in the world - our reputation precedes us.
“This upgrade was necessary to ensure that we continue in that influential role.
“Generations of seafarers have been taught here and South Tyneside College is known throughout the world for the tremendous maritime expertise of South Shields Marine School. These improvements, along with our dedicated and talented maritime team, mean we can continue to rival the very best facilities that exist anywhere in the world.”
The full-mission bridge projection system, which includes Kongsberg K-Line type consoles, complemented by new full-mission engine room consoles, which include touch screen control and Kongsberg Big-View software, is at the core of the new facilities.
It gives an incredibly realistic view and portrayal of what it is like to be on a vessel’s bridge or engine room in various simulated situations.
College maritime experts say this and other improvements totalling £4.5 million fulfil the requirement of all the major shipping companies who spend thousands of pounds on every cadet they send for training as well as using the college to train more experienced seafarers to pass extra or promotion qualifications.
As such the marine school is recognised as one of the major educational centres for higher professional qualifications for deck, engineering and the new ETO qualifications training over 1,500 officers per year.
The school boasts a new 8-bridge Kongsberg desktop bridge simulation suite, integrated to VTS, and a digital CCTV recording and playback system operating throughout which will allow staff to monitor the non-technical skills of students. The latest VTS Kongsberg C Scope operator software in VTS Simulation has also been installed.
A key part of the overhaul is the installation of multiple cameras and microphones on to bridges as part of the marine school’s response to growing demands for training which addresses human actions and behaviours through Human Element Leadership and Management (HELM).
It is designed to reduce accidents and improve crew performance by studying skills such as team working, leadership, situational awareness, decision making and communication ie. what is said and implied through body language and gestures.
Thirty cameras and eight microphones have been installed in bridges and engine spaces to record what is said and by whom throughout each exercise. The results are utilised by an instructor on advanced recording and playback software.
The college’s G Block, close to Grosvenor Road, will be open to the public tomorrow, between 10am and 3pm (Saturday, February 9), for a Shipping Industry open day where anyone interested in a maritime career can see the facilities and speak to lecturers and shipping company representatives.
Those participating will be Clyde Marine Training, Jo Tankers, Pritchard Gordon Tankers, Bibby, Carnival Cruises, RFA, Princess Cruises, Shell, Ship Safe Training Group, Maersk, Sergo, Viking Recruitment, Chiltern Maritime and Anglo Eastern.
The simulation facilities can be seen in F Block, with L Block’s lecture hall hosting MNTB Careers at Sea DVD.
The college is further investing in a new climbing tower at its Marine Safety Training Centre - based by the river Tyne in South Shields with its partner Safety Technology - which will allow working at height to those aiming to work in the offshore wind market.
It will add to the centre’s existing facilities which include an environmental pool used for survival training, an eight-seat helicopter escape module, and offshore platform transfer simulator.
The centre, one of the foremost safety training facilities in the UK, is used by hundreds of organisations around the world. Courses utilise extensive and unique facilities in offshore safety training and include Europe’s first offshore wind transfer simulator.
A dip into the past..
Advertisement in the 1915 Ainsley's Nautical Almanac and Tide Tables
Published by TL Ainsley
Mill Dam South Shields - price 1 shilling (five pence)
The course for Extra Master was Three Guineas (£3.15)
The course for Extra First Class Engineer Four Guineas (£4.20)
South Tyneside College - formerly The South Shields Marine & Technical College
(..before that - The Marine School of South Shields)
and now back to The Marine School of South Shields..
The college recently celebrated it's 150th anniversary. It was quite unique in its day being one of the first institutions to provide education for seafarers in order that they could better deal with the rigours of the sea; providing them with training in navigation and engineering to help prevent tragedy and loss of life that was so prevalent at the time the school opened in 1861. It is a brilliant achievement that, in 2012 the college offers some of the most modern and comprehensive marine simulation technology in the world. The college combines a unique blend of traditional experience and forward vision.
It is the largest UK centre for marine education, with a full range of courses in the three major disciplines
Deck :: Marine Engineering :: Marine Communications and Control
On Friday 20th May, members of the Tyne Area Shipping Club were guests of the Marine Simulation Department. We received a most comprehensive introduction to the world of high-end technology the art of simulation and their use of in-house mathematical -3D modelling techniques.
With many of us being ex deck and engineering officers, it was a most wonderful experience to see at first hand just how far the shipping industry has advanced technologically in just a few short years. We should like to thank John, Paul and Chris and other members of staff, for making the visit such a memorable one. We thank them also for information and photographs that will allow me to show you something of what we learnt and saw during our visit.
The Marine Simulation Department boasts a total of thirteen simulated bridges in three locations. Five Kongsberg-Norcontrol (KMSS) Polaris-type bridges are housed at the Marine Simulation Centre. There is also a full mission engine simulator that is capable of being connected to a full mission bridge simulator for combined deck and engine room courses. This Centre also acts as the administrative base for the Department
The Port Operations Unit contains a further four KMSS bridges, as well as, a comprehensive VTMIS simulator. The Radar Station is home to a four bridge Transas Simulator as well as six 'live' ARPA (Automatic Radar Plotting Aid) systems and a Navigation Aids Laboratory.
Marine Simulation Centre
There are five simulated navigational bridges capable of being used together or individually. All bridges have a visual display with high quality day/night photo- textured scenes. One bridge has a 135º projected horizontal field of view on either side of the bow and can be used facing astern for supply vessel operations.
Vessel Traffic Services (VTS)
The Vessel Traffic Service simulator system consists of three shore based control stations with data input from radar scanner locations within the exercise area. The control stations use the same Norcontrol IT 'VOC5060' software that is used by actual VTS installations. There can be full interaction with any combination of the five simulation bridges plus any additional targets under the instructor's control. Digital audio communications are used, capable of full recording and synchronisation within the exercise scenario - for debrief purposes.
Cargo Handling Simulation
This workstation based system consists of up to eleven student workstations capable of performing the complete cargo handling operations of a real ship's cargo plant. There are ship models representing oil tankers (VLCC & Product), a chemical tanker and liquid gas (semi-pressure & Moss-type) carriers.
Full Mission Engine Room Simulator
This simulator is a generic reproduction of the control and engine room of a VLCC powered by a MAN B&W slow speed diesel engine. The control room contains consoles which house main engine controls, plant alarm, generator control, pump and compressor controls and oil fired boiler control panels.
The realism is further enhanced by an engine room located on two levels, with full sound and environmental conditions.
Engine Workstation Simulator
The individual workstation units are provided with various machinery models.
* Slow speed engine (MAN B&W 5LMC90)
* Combustion engineering boiler (CE V2 M9) and Stal steam turbine, powering VLCC
* Twin medium speed engine (Pielstick 10 PC 4.2) powering a ferry/general cargo vessel
* Diesel electric system, (Cegelec Synchro-converter) - powering a large passenger vessel
* Gas Turbine System (G.E. LM2500)
Engine Control station
Research & Development
The in-house research and development team, which includes Marine and IT professionals, can provide a range of customer specific 3D visual geographical
database areas as well as realistic ship models. These models are then used to deliver training scenarios or are integral to feasibility studies.
3D Modelling workstation
Model of Caledonian McBrayne ferry m.v.Bute
Port Operations Unit
Port operations provide cutting edge training facilities. A single simulator system is based in twinned buildings; one location housing four KMSS ‘Desktop' bridges, the other is fitted with a fully integrated VTMIS suite. This unique development has been created specifically to service the full range of IALA approved VTS courses available at South Tyneside College.
Vessel Traffic Services (VTMIS)
The simulator system consists of three VTS Operator control stations and a VTS Supervisor station using the same Norcontrol IT VOC5060 software that is used by actual Norcontrol VTMIS installations. There are also five 'scenario stations', which provide the communication interaction to which VTS operators will need to respond. Each of these nine operators and up to two Instructors can observe a birds-eye-view of the VTS area of responsibility; they each also have access to a shipping movements database (Norcontrol IT VDB6070).
The Marine Simulation Department can provide a professional service to the marine industry; this can be provided by staff within the Department based on their practical experience and their academic ability. The simulation facilities can also be used to provide operational evidence and demonstration.
* Safety Consultancy including Risk Analysis, Safety Assessment,
* Bridge Team Management Audits
* Port Operation Feasibility Studies
* Shore Based (VTS) Consultancy
The Department is committed to maintaining the highest standards of training excellence. As evidence of this level of competence the Marine Simulation
Department has obtained MCA approval across its range of courses.
All courses operate under the quality control of ISO 9000:2000 with the Department having the flexibility to provide statutory courses or create courses to suit special or individual requirements