Mv Western Light
ex Ariadni, Soca, Trapezitza, Fantasia, Channel Seaway, Fiesta, Seafrance Cezanne
Nigel Thornton Collection
Steel twin screw motor vessel, originally built in 1979 by Kockhums Varv (shipyard) AB, Malmo, Sweden (Yard No. 568), as ARIADNI for Rederi AB Nordo, Sweden, as a passenger/roll-on roll-off and commercial vehicle ferry. Launched October 13th , 1979.
- Length: 163.51 m
- Breadth of Hull: 27.63m
- Draught: 6.58m
- Tonnage: 25,122 gross, 11,331 net, 10,500 deadweight
- Engines: Two 7-cylinder Sulzer 7RLA56 diesels
- Power: 13020kW
- Speed: 19 knots
- Capacity: 1,800 passengers, 650 cars/ 80 trailers
- Call Sign: Unknown
- MMSI Number: 312126000
- IMO Number: 7806099
- Registry: Belize
- Sister Vessel: Wawel (Fantasia)
February 23rd 1978: Order contract signed
October 13th 1979: Christened ARIADNE and launched.
January 1980: Delivered to Rederi Ab Nordö, Malmö.
February 1980: Renamed SOCA.
February 1980: Introduced by UMEF between Koper, Yugoslavia – Tartous, Syria.
1981: Sold to So Mejdunaroden Automobile Transport, Bourgas, Bulgaria. (S.O.M.A.T). Renamed TRAPEZITZA.
1981: Commenced service for MedLink in the Mediterranean Sea.
1984: Commenced service between Livorno – Iran – Iraq.
1986: Chartered to Callitzis Rederei (Greece).
1987: Commenced service between Trieste – Igoumenitsa – Patras.
September 1988: Chartered to DFDS A/S, Copenhagen. Commenced service between Copenhagen – Helsingborg – Harwich – Immingham.
© Derek Sands
October 1988: Sold to Sealink (UK) Ltd, London, England, put under the Bahaman flag. Renamed FANTASIA.
February 23rd 1989: Left Velletta.
March 2nd 1989: Arrived Bremerhaven for minor overhaul/refit.
May 7th 1989: Renamed CHANNEL SEAWAY. Commenced service between Dover – Calais. As well as freight she carried overflow traffic when space was available.
© Ted Ingham (left) and © Brian Fisher (right)
October 17th 1989: Arrived at Lloyd Werft GmbH, Bremerhaven, Germany. Rebuilt as a passenger ferry. The existing superstructure was modified and extended to the stern. To make room for new passenger areas, the upper vehicle deck was cut free and lowered, taking advantage of redundant headroom for double-stacked containers. The vehicle decks were converted from stern-loading to drive-through, and large sponsors were added on both sides
Roy Thornton Collection
February 1990: French misgivings about the name FANTASIA saw her become FIESTA before entering service, whilst FIESTA (1) became FANTASIA.
The Channel Seaway under conversion to become the Fiesta at Lloyd Werft, Bremerhaven © M Fournet
May 8th 1990: Re-delivered after rebuild.
May 13th 1990: Arrived in Calais.
May 29th 1990: Registered owner Societé Propietaires des Navaires, Paris, France, 49% of which owned by Stena Line AB.
© Fotoflite, Roy Thornton Collection
July 1st 1990: Commenced service between Dover – Calais as a freight ferry.
July 9th 1990: Commenced service between Dover – Calais as a car and passenger ferry.
January 1996: Returned to builders yard for first major refit.
© Brian Fisher (left) and © Nigel Thornton (right)
July 12th 1995: Agreement between Stena Sealink Line and French partners SNAT ( Societe Nouvelle d’Armement Transmanche) would terminate from December 31st 1995. From that time onwards SNAT would trade as SeaFrance and Stena Sealink Line would trade as Stena Line.
January 1996: Renamed SEAFRANCE CÉZANNE operating between Calais – Dover
© Robert Fournier (left) and © Nigel Thornton (right)
1999: Stena Line sold their share in the company to SNAT.
June 3rd 2005: To Arno Dunkerque for refit
July 12th 2005: Expected to return to service.
August 2005: Returned to service in “freight only” capacity.
2006: Still in service.
October 2nd 2006: Out of service for maintenance work. The 2006/2007 overhaul schedule up to the end of February 2007:
“SEAFRANCE CEZANNE” 19th February – unconfirmed.
© Ray Goodfellow (left) and © M Fournet (right)
2008: Remains in service with Seafrance on the Calais-Dover service.
February 13th 2009: Withdrawn from service for layup.
Dover 12/2/09 © Jean-Guy Hagelstein
February 14th 2009: Moved to Dunkerque for layup.
Dunkerque 15/2/09 © Robert Fournier (left) and © Jean-Guy Hagelstein (right)
February 17th 2009: It was announced that Seafrance are to lay off 650 staff (about a third of there work force) after disastrous financial losses during 2008. The Seafrance Cezanne and the Seafrance Nord Pas de Calais were to be displaced from the fleet leaving only 3 ships on the Dover-Calais service. The agreement was eventually changed with only the Seafrance Cezanne being displaced.
May 2010: Listed as laid up and out of class by Bureau Veritas, vessel remained for sale in the port of Dunkerque.
September 2010: Remains laid up in Dunkerque awaiting her fate.
Dunkerque 25/09/10 © Robert Fournier
December 2010: Observed still laid up in Dunkerque.
Dunkerque 14/12/10 © Ray Goodfellow
July 2011: Reported to have been sold. The vessel was renamed “Western Light” and re-flagged to Belize. She remained in the Port of Dunkerque, France.
ex Seafrance Cezanne, Dunkerque 26/07/11 © Ray Goodfellow
July 7th 2011: Registered Owner, KIMIYA SHIPPING INC, Care of Condor Maritime Dienstleistung GmbH & Co KG, Neuer Wall 80, 20354 Hamburg, Germany. Ship Manager, CONDOR MARITIME DIENSTLEISTUNG, Neuer Wall 80, 20354 Hamburg, Germany.
September 16th 2011: Entered dry dock at ARNO Dunkerque.
September 18th 2011: Departed dry dock and returned to her original berth in the port of Dunkerque.
September 27th 2011: Noted to be taking on bunkers at the port of Dunkerque.
October 7th 2011: Departed Dunkerque for Malta.
October 15th 2011: AIS destination changed to Dubai.
November 4th 2011: Last seen on AIS in the Gulf of Aidan showing a destination of Dubai with an arrival date of 10/11/11.
November 8th 2011: Reported to be heading for Alang, India.
November 16th 2011: Her final voyage completed she was beached at Alang, India for demolition.
All information is believed to be correct and no responsibility is accepted for any errors or omissions found. All items included in this article are subject to © copyright. We would like to take this opportunity of thanking: Micke Asklander (Faktaomfartyg), Joe (Ferry Fantastic), Brian Fisher, Derek Sands, Robert Fournier, Ted Ingham, M Fournet and Jean-Guy Hagelstein for their assistance in compiling this feature.