Past and Present

In September of 2006 Nigel Thornton joined the website and started compiling his hugely popular ‘Past and Present‘ features. These features profile the timeline of an individual vessel through photography and historical information.

Originally very much focused on the history of the local ferry fleets which have served the Port of Dover, the site has now been expanded to include all different vessel types from around the UK and Ireland.

To help website visitors take their minds of the Coronavirus Pandemic of 2020/21 Nigel started to take requests for Past and Present features which have resulted in a large number of updates to the website.


TS Jan Breydel – Past and Present

TS Jan Breydel – Past and Present

TS Tourist Ex Jan Breydel Steel triple screw turbine steamer, built by Cockerill’s of Hoboken (Yard No.493) for the Belgian State Railway’s Ostend service in 1910. Technical Data Length: 108.81 m…
MV Peak Dublin – Past and Present

MV Peak Dublin – Past and Present

MV Peak Dublin Ex Nordic Fiona, Wilson Huelva, Thomas, Ivan Kudryavtsev © Jens Smit (Rotterdam, 10/04/2019) Steel single screw motor vessel (Project DCV33) built in 2010 by Onega Shipbuilding Yard…
TS Pieter De Coninck – Past and Present

TS Pieter De Coninck – Past and Present

TS Pieter De Coninck - Steel triple screw turbine steamer, built by Cockerill’s of Hoboken (Yard No. 494) for the Belgian State Railways Ostend service in 1909
MV Euromagique – Past and Present

MV Euromagique – Past and Present

MV Magi, ex Euromagique, Attika, Naesborg, Dana Corona, Naesborg, Kaprifol - Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 1977 by Ab Lödöse Varv, Lödöse. (Yard No 169) as Roll on…
TS Stad Antwerpen – Past and Present

TS Stad Antwerpen – Past and Present

TS Stad Antwerpen Roy Thornton Collection Steel triple screw turbine steamer, built and engined by Cockerill’s of Hoboken (Yard No. 530)in 1913 for the Belgian Marine Administration’s Ostend service as…
MV Oldenburg – Cargo from the Past

MV Oldenburg – Cargo from the Past

MV Ourania Ex Attica Sea, Oldenburg Oldenburg, Courtesy of DDGHANSA Steel single screw motor vessel built in 1950 by Orenstein-Koppel und Lübecker Maschinenbau AG, Lübeck, Germany  (Yard No 445) as…
MV Caroline Russ – Past and Present

MV Caroline Russ – Past and Present

MV Caroline Russ, ex Corsica Linea Dui, Caroline Russ - Steel single screw motor vessel built in 1999 by J.J. Sietas KG, Hamburg, Germany (Yard No 1188) as Roll on/Roll…
MV Darlington – Cargo from the Past

MV Darlington – Cargo from the Past

MV Ekaterini Ex Petro P, Abadan, Gulf Sky, Darlington © Charlie Hill Steel single screw motor vessel, built in 1958 by James Lamont & Co Ltd., Port Glasgow (Yard No.…
MV Moby Wonder – Past and Present

MV Moby Wonder – Past and Present

MV Moby Wonder - Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 2001 by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Heavy Machinery Ltd., Okpo, South Korea (Yard No 7605) as a Passenger and Vehicle…
MV Moby Aki – Past and Present

MV Moby Aki – Past and Present

MV Moby Aki - Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 2005 by Fincantieri Cantieri Navali Italiani, Ancona, Italy (Yard No 6116) as a Passenger and Vehicle Ferry
MV Hebridean Sky – Past and Present

MV Hebridean Sky – Past and Present

MV Hebridean Sky Ex Sea Explorer I, Sea Explorer, Corinthian II, Island Sun, Sun, Ranai I, Renaissance Seven © Dennis Mortimer (Piraeus, 17/07/2011) Steel twin screw motor vessel built in…
MV Suffolk Ferry – Past and Present

MV Suffolk Ferry – Past and Present

MV Suffolk Ferry - Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 1947 at John Brown & Co., (Clydebank) Ltd (Yard No 638) for The British Transport Commission (L.N.E.R. Harwich) as…
MV Norfolk Ferry – Past and Present

MV Norfolk Ferry – Past and Present

MV Norfolk Ferry - Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 1951 at John Brown & Co., (Clydebank) Ltd (Yard No 661) for The British Railways, Southern Region as a…
TSMV Lymington (II) – Past and Present

TSMV Lymington (II) – Past and Present

TSMV Sound of Sanda, ex Lymington (II) - Steel twin screw double ended vessel built in 1938 at William Denny Brothers, Dumbarton (Yard Number. 1322) for British Railways Board, London,…
MV Rotterdam – Past and Present

MV Rotterdam – Past and Present

MV Rotterdam - Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 1997 by Fincantieri Breda, Venedig Italy (Yard No 5980) as a Passenger (Cruise) Ship for Holland America Line
PMV Farringford – Past and Present

PMV Farringford – Past and Present

PMV Farringford - Steel double ended diesel-electric paddle vessel built in 1947 at Wm Denny & Bros Ltd., Dumbarton (Yard No. 1402) for British Railways Board, London, England as a…
MV Freshwater (II) – Past and Present

MV Freshwater (II) – Past and Present

MV Sound of Seil, ex Freshwater (II) - Steel twin Voith Schneider double ended vessel built in 1959 at Ailsa SB Company, Troon (Yard Number. 505) for British Railways Board,…
MV Fishbourne (II) – Past and Present

MV Fishbourne (II) – Past and Present

MV Kibris I, ex Fishbourne (II) - Steel twin Voith Schneider double ended vessel built in 1961 at Philip & Son Ltd., Dartmouth (Yard Number. 1318) for British Railways Board,…
MV Camber Queen – Past and Present

MV Camber Queen – Past and Present

MV Mira Troia, ex Camber Queen - Steel twin Voith Schneider double ended vessel built in 1961 at Philip & Son Ltd., Dartmouth (Yard Number. 1319) for British Railways Board,…
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