Eyemouth enjoys cruise ship visit

Cruise ship 'Hanseatic' anchored just outside Eyemouth where passengers were shuttled into the harbour by tender'Photograph courtesy of Tim Grimshaw at Eyemouth Rib Trips
Cruise ship 'Hanseatic' anchored just outside Eyemouth where passengers were shuttled into the harbour by tender'Photograph courtesy of Tim Grimshaw at Eyemouth Rib Trips

Eyemouth Harbour Trust are hoping that the recent sight of a massive cruise ship off the Berwickshire coast is a glimpse of the future.

The MS Hanseatic sat outside Eyemouth harbour on Wednesday last week, putting Berwickshire’s coastal town on the same footing as traditional touring ports like Falmouth, Lisbon and Hamburg.

The Hanseatic, which was carrying 158 passengers - close to its full capacity of 175 - is the world’s only five star-rated expedition ship.

She weighs 8,378 tonnes

Passengers were offered the chance to get their ‘land’ legs back for a short while and explore the coast.

Eyemouth was the last port of call on this particular cruise which started in Lisbon on the 30th May.

She departed early in the evening of June 10 for Hamburg, Germany.

Christine Bell, the harbour trust’s business manager, told the Berwickshire News this week: “The cruise call of MS Hanseatic went extremely well on Wednesday.

“Feedback was very positive, with the agency commenting that the Eyemouth call was overall a very enjoyable, pleasant and positive experience.

“There were 158 passengers on board, all of which came ashore. 118 of them were booked on onshore excursions, including a wildlife walk at St Abbs, Lindisfarne/Holy Island and a Northumberland panoramic tour.

“The remaining 40 passangers and some crew members came ashore and spent time enjoying all that Eyemouth has to offer.

“We’re delighted that the cruise call from MS Hanseatic went so well, and the settled weather allowed the ship to anchor closer to the harbour entrance.

“Following the visit, we have had extremely positive feedback from the ship’s captain who described Eyemouth as ‘a picture perfect village’.

“The ship’s agency, Denholm Wilhelmson Ltd, praised the welcome received on arrival and the facilities on offer.”

Looking to the future, she added: “Eyemouth Harbour Trust hope to build on the success of this recent call and encourage more explorer type ships to Eyemouth in the future.”

The Hanseatic set a record last year for the northernmost point reached by a passenger ship, as she became the first non-Russian cruise ship to make the journey along the edge of the Arctic Circle from Norway to Alaska.

That Arctic Circle trip will be repeated in late 2016, but for now the Hanseatic is being prepared for journeys across the North Sea and Atlantic, from Hamburg to Iceland and Greenland.