During February the ro-ro freight ferry MN Pélican (1999/12,076gt) celebrated five years of work for Brittany Ferries between Poole and Northern Spain.

Built as Trans Botnia for SeaTrans, the 155m hull was constructed by Santierul Naval of Galatz, Romania, and completed by Norway’s Fosen Mekaniske Verksteder.

During 2006 she was sold to the French shipping company Maritime Nantaise and, following a long-term contract to the French Ministry of Defence, began a time charter to Brittany Ferries at the beginning of 2016.

Exhaust scrubbers were fitted during 2019, housed within a heightened funnel.

MN Pélican operates a twice weekly service between Poole and Bilbao, although towards the end of 2020 several sailings operated to Santander due to industrial unrest at her regular Spanish port.

For three weeks at the beginning of this year the ship was dry-docked at the Spanish Navantia shipyard in El Ferrol then returned to service on 8 February having completed 800 sailings for Brittany Ferries.

With a capacity for around 110 trailers and berths for eight drivers, MN Pélican is now the best-performing freight ship in the Brittany Ferries fleet due to the shift towards unaccompanied loads.

Report and photo by Kevin Mitchell

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