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Last Updated: Monday, 26 February 2007, 11:27 GMT
Freight ferry boost for Swansea
Swansea Cork Ferries
Swansea Cork Ferries had sailed between the two ports since 1987
A new freight-ferry between Swansea and Cork is to set sail after the main passenger service suspended operations for this year.

HJ Lines, operated by Hugh Johnson who runs Air Cargo Wales, will re-establish links between the ports next month.

He said the three sailings a week would fill a gap in the "lucrative" haulage trade link left by the withdrawal of the main Swansea-Cork ferry.

Port operators said they were also working to restore tourist sailings.

Swansea Cork Ferries announced last month it would not operate this year after a deal for a new vessel fell through.

It laid off 30 staff but said it hoped to resume sailings in 2008.

APB continues to work to re-establish tourist traffic between the ports of Swansea and Cork
John Fitzgerald, director

Since it was launched in 1987, the service had carried over three million passengers and their cars - plus some freight traffic.

Mr Johnson said his service, although a smaller operation, would reintroduce an important link between south Wales and southern Ireland.

It will run from Swansea every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday starting on 20 March, and will carry 12 drivers and 65 trailers.

"The route between Swansea and Cork is a well-established one, particularly for passenger traffic," he said.

"There is, however, growing demand for increased freight capacity and I am keen to exploit and develop this lucrative trade link."

John Fitzgerald, director of Associated British Ports' south Wales ports said he was hopefully a passenger service would also be resumed.

"This is great news for Swansea - with his 30 years of international freight-forwarding experience I am confident Hugh Johnson will successfully develop this trade route.

"APB aims to attract greater ferry and cruise-related business to Swansea and continues to work to re-establish tourist traffic between the ports of Swansea and Cork."

Swansea-Cork ferry is suspended
09 Jan 07 |  South West Wales

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