News: “Over the graves of the Druids and under the wreck of Rome,
Rudely but surely they bedded the plinth of the days to come.
Behind the feet of the Legions and before the Norseman’s ire
Rudely but greatly begat they the framing of State and Shire
Rudely but deeply they laboured, and their labour stand till now.
If we trace on ancient headlands the twist of their eight-ox plough.”

-Rudyard Kipling
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Author Topic: Herald of Free Enterprise  (Read 27498 times)

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Merry

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2012, 22:18:44 »
The year after the disaster I started work at Customs in Chatham Docks.  A colleague spoke of how he had been on the phone to his oppo in Zebrugge, talking about some mundane issue, when the man on the other end just exclaimed that he had seen the ferry go over...the immediacy of that (this being in the days before instant coverage on the Web) had a massive impact on them both. 

Later on I did some training with counsellors who had set up the service in Dover that supported survivors and the bereaved, and their experiences had led to the development of a range of new therapies because something on this scale had not really happened in peacetime before.

It was all so terribly, terribly sad.

Offline Sentinel S4

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #24 on: March 06, 2012, 22:05:30 »
I knew a few who didn't come home from that. RIP my friends, RIP.

S4.
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Offline jpdeejay

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #23 on: March 06, 2012, 22:04:01 »
RIP, I still remember that day, my parents told me what had happened on that terrible night, 25 years doesn't seem possible!!!!

Offline Leofwine

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #22 on: March 06, 2012, 12:47:48 »
At that time I often travelled on the Dover Ferries, usually with Townsend, but also from time to time with Sealink or Sea France. As a passenger Townsend always seemed the most professional of the three, and certainly seemed to have the friendliest staff (and the best restaurant!) I got the impression that all three had the same attitudes towards safety - I remember several occasions being on deck and seeing/hearing the doors finally closing well out to sea. I wonder, with hindsight, if this was not an accident just waiting to happen to any one of the companies, and that Townsend were just the ones it happened to first. I suspect that all the ferry companies tightened up on safety after that, and that the bosses of the other companies all breathed a sigh of relief that it was not one of their ships it had happened to.

As I said, I was just a passenger so I can't say for sure exactly what the working practices actually were on the different ferry lines, only the impression that they all seemed fairly similar to the non-professional eye.
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Offline helcion

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #21 on: March 06, 2012, 12:33:16 »
A very sad day.     

I was aboard the bulk carrier ‘NOSIRA SHARON’ heading up the Channel for Gdynia, Poland, from Rouen & we could hear the rescue operations taking place on the VHF radio that evening as we passed.
Information updates were being made from the coastal radio stations at Oostende & North Foreland & possibly by Scheveningen Radio in the Netherlands.

I later worked for Sealink & Stena line on the local ferries & was impressed by the professionalism of the operating procedures, no doubt much improved after the disaster.
The MAIB report, mentioned in post # 17 makes sombre reading.

A visit to the ‘Herald Wood’ memorial plantation at Whitfield is recommended.

jpdeeday   -  after salvage the ‘HERALD’ was taken to Vlissingen before being towed to Taiwan for scrapping, she was renamed FLUSHING RANGE for the voyage & broke adrift at least once.

Cheers

Helcion

Offline ferriesdover

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #20 on: March 06, 2012, 11:56:48 »
Morning...A very emotive subject....

Quote
i spent a number of years deep sea before working on dover ferries,my impression was the lack of discipline and couldnt give a damn attitude was a recipe for a serious accident. i found it all very scary.

I found a similar experience,having worked for P&O,then transferred to a Townsend ship.......not to my liking..
the sister ship of the Herald...........
Regards......dt.....

theartist

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #19 on: February 23, 2011, 08:14:26 »
i spent a number of years deep sea before working on dover ferries,my impression was the lack of discipline and couldnt give a damn attitude was a recipe for a serious accident. i found it all very scary.

Fact Hunt

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #18 on: February 22, 2011, 22:14:03 »
This is the MAIB report into the Herald capsize:

http://www.maib.gov.uk/publications/investigation_reports/herald_of_free_enterprise/herald_of_free_enterprise_report.cfm


This is how it was first reported on that evening:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u5xgY8c_xXE

It was one of those events where I remember exactly where I was, & what I was doing when I heard the news.


In reply to the post from theartist, let's just say that there is a very different culture in the ferry industry these days to what there was back in 1987.




Offline jpdeejay

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2011, 21:14:43 »
Even though I was only 11 years old at the time I can still remember the news, it still haunts me that so many people could perish at once, RIP everone who sadly lost their life on that night!

I sincerley hope that once the herald was raised it was scrapped and never used again, somebody please confirm that it was scrapped!!!!

Offline Andyb

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2011, 16:19:49 »
Sadly I lost my cousin Robert Mantle who was the ships radio officer on the tragic day.
Would a copy of the Coroners report be available to the public as I would like to understand a little more.

Andy
Metiri est cognoscere

Offline Rochester-bred

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2011, 15:28:49 »
A tragedy none will forget in Kent, I knew of two people who lost their lives and till this day the images stay in my mind of it all.
***I am still the child within***

theartist

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2011, 12:14:09 »
the mods can delete this if they think its too political......as an ex merchant seaman i would like to say that other cross channel ratings and my self from that time strongly believe that the official enquiry was a cover up for the unseaman like practices amongst officers and crew on the channel routes at that time.   nuff said...trevor summerfield...r.i.p.

donna packer

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2011, 11:09:49 »
i remember it well, a week after it happened i went to bielefeld in germany with my cousin, as we approached the ferry our ferry cut its engines and we just drifted past, the sea was a sea of flowers, it really was so so sad and so haunting, it will be something i will never forget, god bless..............

Offline Glen

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2010, 23:20:24 »
I'm sure I remember seeing the 'Herald' in Chatham. I'm pretty sure she was towed to Chatham and put in one of the dry docks off No1 basin. Thames Ship Repair was active there at the time, before English Estates evicted them to make way for a marina and yuppie housing. Think Thames Ship Repair got a contract to repair the ship enough for her to be towed to the breakers in the far east somewhere. I know she wasn't there long.

I don't know if she ever went to Chatham or not but she was at Flushing, The Netherlands for a while before going to the breakers. She was renamed Flushing Range for the delivery voyage to the Far East. I have a not too brilliant picture (slide) somewhere in my collection of her under that name but don't ask me to find it now!

Glen

Offline grandarog

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Re: Herald of Free Enterprise
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2010, 22:06:31 »
Another year has passed and the memorial flower bed as photographed by Colin Haggart is ablaze of green weeds as usual which the council call ornamental grass. Funny how there is never enough money for a few pretty annuals to brighten it up . They have shirked responsibility and come up with countless excuses not to do anything except cursory litter picking and mowing . If they spaced the flowers planted  on the Central Avenue beds just one centimetre  further apart there would be more than enough to smother the whole garden not just the planter. but that would need brains to work out ,and there s no political browny points involved!!

 

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