All content copyright © David Richerby, 2012
|Sunday, 1st April||Ships|
|Tuesday, 3rd April||Fure Star|
|Thursday, 5th April||The cruise ship Balmoral
|Friday, 6th April||Ships|
|Monday, 9th April||Ships and a giant puppet|
|Tuesday, 10th April||Ships|
|Sunday, 15th April||The cruise ship Marco Polo
|Monday, 16th April||The cruise ship Saga Pearl II
|Tuesday, 17th April||Ships
Weeding Prince's Dock
|Wednesday, 18th April||Saga Pearl II
|Thursday, 19th April||Ships|
|Friday, 20th April||Ships
Sea Odyssey (giant diver and giant girl)
|Saturday, 21st April||RFA Wave Knight
Sea Odyssey (puppets and artificial geyser)
|Sunday, 22nd April||Ships
|Monday, 23rd April||Ships|
|Tuesday, 24th April||Liverpool and ships|
|Wednesday, 25th April||Ships|
|Thursday, 26th April||Windcat 29|
|Friday, 27th April||Ships
|Saturday, 28th April||On board HMS Dragon|
|Sunday, 29th April||HMS Dragon
|Monday, 30th April||Crystal Amethyst|
The cruise ship Balmoral. Her next destination is Belfast where she'll begin a cruise retracing the route Titanic took to the point where she sank. Seems a bit ghoulish, to me.
The puppet thing is for an event in a couple of weeks' time, when it will parade around the city, along with a giant girl and a giant dog.
Saga Pearl II arrived this morning on her penultimate cruise. (Oh, the irony — Saga retiring a ship for being too old.) She was supposed to leave in the evening but stayed overnight because of bad weather forecast in the Irish Sea.
Once a year, they trim back the plants in Prince's Dock to stop them taking over. The little boat thing trims them underwater and then pushes the clippings into the corner of the dock for an excavator to take them out.
The saga is over. Strong winds in the Atlantic and the exposed position of the berth at Cobh meant that Saga Pearl stayed two nights in Liverpool, which is very unusual. Cruise ships aren't supposed to stay overnight as part of the conditions imposed when government and European Union money was used to build the terminal.
The storyline is something like this. A giant girl's giant father somehow died on the Titanic and his giant brother went off to retrieve the letter he'd written to her. Uncle and girl will be wandering around the city for three days before they meet up and he gives her the letter.
I'd expected to be largely indifferent to all of this but the giant diver was actually very cool, since he was powered by bungee-jumping maniacs. His legs are lifted by two guys grabbing onto a rope, jumping off a platform, pulling it to the ground and then running round to the back of the queue to do it all again.
I was, however, very disappointed with the giant girl. She was just sitting on the back of a car, doing next to nothing, and the whole thing really wasn't helped by the bored guys sitting around and smoking. OK, I get that little girls get tired and need to be carried but I thought the point of this was to be an entertaining spectacle, not a perfect reproduction of a little girl. She stood up again, after I'd followed her for a few hundred yards trying to get better shots.
And now it's RFA Wave Knight's turn for refit at Cammell Laird. She only recently arrived back in the UK after a year's deployment in the Gulf.
By the way, the guy who built the giant puppets really hates it if you call his puppets puppets.
Not sure how this relates to the giants but, apparently, it heralds their arrival. In any case, it's extremely realistic.
I didn't go see the uncle giving the letter to the girl but I did
get a good view of them sailing away in their
I've been wanting to get shots like this for a while but this is the first time I've had the opportunity while there's been a ship berthed in Alfred Dock, which is just inside the entrance to the Birkenhead Docks. It must be a pain for the ships' crews, as the public can walk right up to the ship and onto the gangway.
Patricia is owned by Trinity House, which is responsible for lighthouses and navigational buoys in British waters. She also takes paying guests on board for about a week at a time while she works, in a somewhat unusual form of cruising.
The Navy's newest ship, HMS Dragon. She was only commissioned a week ago.
I went down to photograph HMS Dragon's departure from street level but I'd not realised how hard it was raining or how long it would take her to leave. SoI went back inside and took photographs from my balcony which is partly shaded from the rain by the one above.