20th November 2014
Dún Laoghaire Harbour Engaged in Dialogue Over Plans for Stena Service
Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company (DLHC) has been informed by Stena Line that it will not operate its HSS Holyhead-Dún Laoghaire service over the 2014 Christmas period. It has been the practice of the ferry company to run a limited sailing service on this route at Christmas. Stena has cited ‘commercial and operational reasons’ for its decision not to operate the service on this occasion.
DLHC is actively engaged in discussions with Stena Line in respect of a seasonal service from 2015. In addition to these discussions, the Company is also heavily focused on building the volume of cruise calls for the 2015 and 2016 seasons, and beyond.
As a core member of the Dún Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholder Group, the Harbour Company has been actively and successfully marketing the cruise potential of the historic 200 year old leisure harbour. It is estimated that Dún Laoghaire will attract c100, 000 cruise passengers and crew next year, with similar numbers already expected for 2016 and 2017. A planning application under the Strategic Infrastructure Development Act for a new cruise berth for ‘next generation’ cruise ship is expected to be submitted in the coming weeks to An Bord Pleanala.
According to Gerry Dunne, CEO of DLHC: “While it is regrettable that the HSS won’t be sailing out of Dún Laoghaire this Christmas, we look forward to a continued relationship with Stena in 2015 and beyond. We also look forward to fully exploiting the potential of the harbour as a world-class destination for cruise calls. These developments will have very positive implications for the town of Dún Laoghaire, and the wider hinterland.”
Dún Laoghaire Harbour will be transformed into a winter wonderland this Christmas with a programme of magical events taking place at the harbour from 26th November until 23rd December 2014. Families are invited to get into the Christmas spirit by attending many of the events this festival has lined up at the harbour.
Santa Claus is coming to Town
What could make Christmas more enchanting than meeting Santa Claus himself? Enjoy an unforgettable line up of entertainment as Christmas celebrations kick off with Santa Claus’s arrival at 5.30pm on Saturday, 29th November at Harbour Plaza. Then the Christmas lights will be switched on and a breath-taking fireworks display over Dún Laoghaire Harbour will officially announce that Christmas in Dún Laoghaire is underway.
Magical Christmas Lantern Procession
The magical lantern procession will see children of all ages light up the street from the People’s Park to the East Pier on Saturday, 20th December at 4pm. The handmade willow and tissue paper lanterns come in all Christmas shapes and sizes. The procession, led by a group of drummers, will take the following route: Park Road; Upr. Georges Street; Marine Road; Queens Road; and the East Pier. It will be followed by a spectacular Fireworks display from the East Pier Lighthouse at 5pm.
Outside of the Harbour, other events taking place in Dún Laoghaire as part of the Christmas Festival include:
• Christmas Market at the Pavilion Quarter and DLR Lexicon.
• Free Treasure Hunts.
• Traditional Crib at St. Michael’s Church.
• Christmas Cookery and Craft School.
• SuperValu Trolley Dash.
• Santa Hat Record Attempt in aid of Barnardos.
• Authentic German Christmas Decoration Stall.
Speaking ahead of the Christmas Festival, Tim Ryan, Operations Manager at Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company said: “The Christmas season is a very special time of year. The Christmas Festival is one of the highlights of the year for the harbour and we are delighted to be a part of it.
“Dún Laoghaire is a perfect location for such a festival. Visitors can hop on the dart from the city centre or catch a bus from their nearest stop and enjoy a fun-filled day out soaking up the festive spirit overlooking the beautiful marina or taking a stroll on the pier.”
For more information on the Dún Laoghaire Christmas Festival 2014, please visit http://www.dunlaoghaire.ie/christmas-festival/.