Current Local Ferry FleetDFDSFerriesNorfolk LinePast and Present

MV Dover Seaways – Past and Present

IMO Number: 9318345

MV Dover Seaways

ex Maersk Dover

© Norfolk Line

© Norfolk Line

Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 2006 by Samsung Heavy Industries, South Korea  (Yard No 1574) for Norfolk Line.

Technical Data

  • Length: 186m
  • Breadth of hull: 28.4m
  • Draught: 6.75m (design)
  • Tonnage: 35,923 gross/10,300 net/6,160 deadweight
  • Engines: 4 x MAN B&W 8L48/60B diesels
  • Power/Propellers: 9600 kW each/2
  • Bow Thrusters: 3 x 1800 kW
  • Stern Thruster: 1 x 1800 kW
  • Speed: 25 knots
  • Capacity: 780 (1000@2008) passengers, 200 cars and up to 120 freight vehicles
  • Lane Metres: 2,000 (design)
  • Lane Width: 3.3m
  • Crew: 70
  • Navigation Officers: European
  • Number of Decks: 2 trailer decks total 200m/1 car deck of 990m
  • Call Sign: MLBZ6
  • MMSI Number: 235010500
  • IMO Number: 9318345
  • Registry: Dover/United Kingdom
  • Sister Ships: Delft Seaways (1524), Dunkerque Seaways (1523)

Current AIS Location

Please note that this specific vessels AIS position data may be over an hour old and that the vessels position will only be displayed when it is within range of the VesselFinder AIS system. The AIS transponder/ship position data featured on this page is intended for information purposes only and it is in no way related to the 'Safety of Navigation at Sea'. All the AIS ship position data featured within this article is provided by VesselFinder and we are therefore not responsible for its content or its accuracy.


The third of a trio of Scandinavian designed “D Class” RoRo ferries built, between 2003 and 2006,  at the Samsung Shipyards in South Korea.

April 13th 2004: SAMSUNG 1574

October 24th 2005: MAERSK DOVER

June 23rd 2006: Delivered and departed Samsung Heavy Industries on 21/06. “Below is the sailing schedule for the Maersk Dover’s delivery. She’ll be in Dover for about a week getting her Pax certificate , no ceremony or anything before she’s on the run. Once she’s on the run, the Dunkerque will have a week on the wall for maintenance, followed by the Delft, then I imagine the Midnight will go to Dunkerque East for painting/de-storing before heading down to the Med to join the rest of the clan in Palma.” BUSAN: Dep 21-Jun-2006, SINGAPORE: Dep 28-Jun-2006, SALALAH (OMAN): Dep 04-Jul-2006 via Suez, ALGECIRAS (SPAIN): (could be Gib, they’ve not decided yet) Dep 13-Jul-2006, DOVER STRAIT (UNITED KINGDOM): Arr: 16-Jul-2006

July 13th 2006 (20.54 hrs): Arrived Gibraltar from Suez. Bunkered and crew change.

Nigel Thornton

Marine Traffic

July 14th 2006 (03.31 hrs): Departed Gibraltar bound for Dover.

July 17th 2006:  Arrived at Dover then conducted berthing trials (bow in) at berth 3

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton (all)

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

“Out with the old and in with the New” © Nigel Thornton

© Andreas Wörteler  © Andreas Wörteler  

© Andreas Wörteler

July 23rd 2006: Inaugural sailing to Dunkerque.

© Norfolk Line  © Norfolk Line

© Norfolk Line  © Norfolk Line

© Norfolk Line  © Norfolk Line

© Norfolk Line  © Norfolk Line

© Norfolk Line  © Norfolk Line

© Norfolkline

July 28th 2006: All 3 sisters running from 1200 today MAERSK DOVER is 0200 / 0800 / 1400 / 2000 ex Dover this week ships switch to next schedule every 3 weeks.

October 17th 2006: The MAIB is carrying out a Preliminary Examination into an incident on 17th October 2006 involving the MAERSK DOVER “Close quarters situation between ro-ro ferry Maersk Dover and two other vessels tanker Apollonia and container ship Maersk Vancouver in the Dover Strait.”

December 2nd 2006. Naming ceremony at Cruise Terminal 2.

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton

© Nigel Thornton

January 29th 2007: To ARNO Dunkerque for minor maintenance

February 7th 2007: Returned to Dover.

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton

March 1st 2007: To ARNO Dunkerque after holing herself.

March 3rd 2007: Resumed service.

“Sea exercise set to test response Monday 5th March 2007

An exercise to test the joint search and rescue operations that would be needed in a major maritime incident in the English Channel is to be held. The British, French and Belgian maritime authorities will be among those involved in Monday’s exercise. The scenario, coordinated by Dover Coastguard, will focus on a Mayday call made by a ferry reporting a collision with an unidentified object. As a result, a spillage occurs from a lorry trailer carrying dangerous goods.

‘Test personnel’

A Maritime Incident Response Group (MIRG) from Kent Fire and Rescue Service and the South East Coast Ambulance Service will be deployed onto the Maersk Dover ferry. The exercise, in the Dover Strait, is due to start at 0940 GMT on Monday while the ferry is travelling from Dover to Dunkirk.

Spike Hughes, rescue coordination centre manager at Dover Coastguard, said the use of the ferry would make the exercise “as realistic as possible”.

“It is extremely important that all the agencies that are involved in a live incident get the opportunity to test their personnel and procedures to ensure they are as prepared as they can be for any eventuality,” he explained.

News Story Copyright BBC MM VII

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton

March 2007 (First week): Lost her starboard anchor.

March 18th 2007: Local rumour suggests the anchor/extensive length of chain to be on the seabed between Dover berths 2 & 3.

© Robert Fournier

© Robert Fournier

June 21st 2007: To ARNO Dunkerque. Reason unknown

© Robert Fournier

© Robert Fournier

June 23rd 2007: Returned to service.

January 31st 2008: Entered ARNO, Dunkerque for refit

February 10th 2008: Anticipated completion of refit and departure from ARNO.

February 10th 2008: Left ARNO.

February 11th 2008: Resumed service.

March 2008: Passenger Cert raised to 1000.

© Andreas Wörteler  © Andreas Wörteler  

© Andreas Wörteler

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton

January 21st 2009: To ARNO Dunkerque for refit.

January 28th 2009: Returned to service.

January 16th – January 22nd 2010: Refit at ARNO, Dunkerque.

January 23rd 2010: Resumed service.

July 2010: Rumours circulated that Norfolkline had been sold to DFDS for 346 million euros.

© Nigel Thornton  © Nigel Thornton  

© Nigel Thornton

© Andreas Wörteler  © Andreas Wörteler  

© Andreas Wörteler

July 3rd 2010: Re-branding commenced. The shipping side will be known as DFDS Seaways and the trailer business will become DFDS Logistics. The ships will have a dark blue hull with DFDS Seaways emblazoned on the side, white superstructure, and a dark blue funnel with the DFDS white Maltese Cross in a circle. The ships will be renamed DOVER SEAWAYS, DELFT SEAWAYS and DUNKERQUE SEAWAYS in due course.

© Simonwp

© Simonwp (Dover, July 2010)

July 27th 2010: AIS first showed her name to be DOVER SEAWAYS .

© Andreas Wörteler  © Andreas Wörteler  

© Andreas Wörteler

© Robert Fournier  © Robert Fournier  

© Robert Fournier

© Andreas Wörteler  © Andreas Wörteler  

© Andreas Wörteler

January 20th 2011: Entered ARNO, Dunkerque for refit.

January 27th 2011: Refit complete, left ARNO.

January 28th 2011: Resumed service.

March 18th 2012: To ARNO, Dunkerque for her annual refit including interior/exterior alterations, the installation of new propellers and adaptations to her rudders.

March 25th 2012: Left ARNO and conducted sea trials (Variable speeds up to 25 knots) in the English Channel.

March 26th 2012: Resumed service.

© Paul Cloke © Paul Cloke © Paul Cloke

© Paul Cloke (all)

January 18th 2013: To ARNO, Dunkerque for refit.

January 22nd 2013: Left ARNO and resumed service.


© Andreas Wörteler

January 22nd (22.12 hrs): Came off service and sailed to Vlissingen for refit.

January 22nd 2014: Arrived Vlissingen.

January 27th 2014: Completed refit and departed Vlissingen.

January 28th 2014: Arrived Dunkerque and resumed service.

November 9th 2014: Made heavy contact with the Port of Dover breakwater on departure.

“Four people were injured when a cross-channel ferry leaving Dover for France hit a harbour wall. The Dover Seaways struck the dock as it departed for Dunkirk at 08:00 GMT. Passengers and crew were evacuated from the DFDS vessel. Paramedics said four people were taken to hospital with “bumps and bruises”. The ferry is currently being assessed for repairs and has been berthed at the Eastern Docks.”

MAIB Report: Dover Seaways’ contact with the South Breakwater, Dover 9 November 2014 © Crown Copyright

November 9th 2014 (22.22hrs): Departed Dover for Rotterdam.

November 18th 2014: Statement from DFDS “Anticipated return to service November 21st 2014”.

November 21st 2014: Left Rotterdam and sailed to Dover. Resumed service Dover  – Dunkerque.

Kind Permission of DFDS Seaways

Kind Permission of DFDS Seaways

January 24th 2015: To Vlissingen for refit.

“Various maintenance work such as its annual survey, repairs. Work also includes carrying out essential steelwork repairs, maintaining and servicing engines, and painting the vessel internally and externally. In addition, repairs are carried out within the passenger areas, from renewing carpets and seating to moving coffee machines to meet commercial requirements. Other major work this year includes overhauling steering gear on two vessels and rebuilding the bulbous bow”

DFDS Connects

Kind Permission of DFDS Seaways  Kind Permission of DFDS Seaways  

Kind Permission of DFDS Seaways

© Netty

© Netty

February 2nd 2015: Completed refit and arrived in Dover.

February 3rd 2015: Resumed service Dover – Dunkerque.

January 16th 2016: “Passengers and crew were evacuated from the vessel for three hours whilst it was moored at Loon Plage, near Dunkirk (North), after abandoned luggage caused a bomb scare. Around 16.15 shipboard personnel found a suspicious backpack on the vehicle deck. The ferry was preparing to sail for Dover. Nearly 450 passengers and crew members were evacuated to a building in the port terminal whilst awaiting the arrival of bomb disposal officers. The operation ended around 7:10 p.m and the evacuees were able to return the ship.” – BMTV

January 24th 2016: Came off service and sailed to Damen yard, Dunkerque west for refit.

February 1st 2016: Left Damen yard and sailed to Dunkerque west to resume service.


© Robert Fournier

January 23rd 2017: To Damen, Dunkerque fror refit

January 30th 2017: Returned to service

October 25th 2018: 


Award-winning ferry operator DFDS today announces the appointment of leading ferry and cruise ship design consultancy, SMC Design, to redevelop its catering outlets on board its Eastern Channel routes.

The redesign will commence when the first Dover-Dunkirk vessel enters dry-dock on 7 January 2019, with plans to complete the entirety of the fleet in just five weeks. The £1,800,000 investment, equating to £600K per ship, will see the relaxed food and beverage outlet revitalized to create the Lighthouse Café, a fresh and modern European coffee shop experience.

Steve Newbery, On-Board Commercial Director, at DFDS commented: “We’re delighted to be working with the prestigious SMC Design consultancy, on a project designed to offer a new, contemporary dining outlet for our passengers.

“The decision to revitalize the current catering concept on board our Eastern Channel routes follows passenger feedback, something we pride ourselves in listening and responding to. In an effort to boost passengers experience on-board, the Lighthouse Café will include a revised menu, recycling stations and a re-vamped children’s play area, all underpinned by a new and vibrant colour scheme.”

The project with SMC Design will continue over the next three-years and will expand to include a £180,000 investment and upgrade to the Horizon restaurants on-board the Dover-Calais fleet, with work commencing early 2019.

This re-design contributes to DFDS’ ongoing investment in its fleet which includes a chartered combined freight and passenger ferry (ro-pax) to be delivered in 2021 for deployment on the English Channel routes. This, in addition to the recent order of a freight ferry (ro-ro) new build, in August, and five previously ordered freight ferries, contributes to DFDS’ plans to increase operational efficiency in the route networks in northern Europe and the Mediterranean.

© George Holland © George Holland  

© George Holland

February 4th 2019: Sailed to Dunkerque (East) and entered Damen Dunkirk for refit


© Julien Carpentier (11/02/2019)

February 13th 2019: Completed refit and sailed to Dunkerque Anchorage.

February 14th 2019: Sailed to Dunkerque east and resumed service.


DFDS reveals NEW Relax Lounge as part of a £3.9m refit investment


With many customers travelling long distances, the chance to relax is a very welcoming part of the customer experience. From today on, passengers can look forward to a peaceful and quiet journey in the new Relax Lounge. As shown on the picture below, the lounge has chairs built into an airline style pod for extra privacy, complimented by soft lighting for the perfect stress-free environment. While children can enjoy other activities and facilities on board, the Relax Lounge will only be accessible for passengers over 16.

The new fully refurbished Premium Lounge areas now have comfortable lounge furniture and modern décor to provide luxurious and peaceful surroundings. This private lounge is open 24 hours a day and is available for all ages. Passengers can enjoy complimentary glass of Prosecco, snacks and pastries, hot and cold refreshments and hot food available from the Premium Lounge menu.

With the success of the Horizon restaurant on the Dover to Calais routes, the refit also includes this restaurant being installed on all three ships on the Dover to Dunkirk route. Here guests can enjoy a selection of freshly cooked pizzas, pasta dishes and healthy salads.

Passengers will also benefit from new bathroom facilities throughout the ship and can now enjoy watching a spot of television in the Lighthouse Café, with newly installed TVs as an additional feature.

Steve Newbery, Onboard Commercial Director for BU Short Routes and Passenger at DFDS said: “This is a very exciting refit programme and continues on from last year’s successes with our Lighthouse Café. It also demonstrates our commitment to continuously improve the passenger experience. Dunkerque Seaways will be the first of the three ships on the Dover to Dunkirk route to receive a number of new looks as part of a £3.9m investment. The two other ships, Delft Seaways and Dover Seaways will be refitted from 1st March and the end of March respectively.

“We believe the improvements will help our passengers relax even more and give them the best possible start to their onward journeys. Many of the changes are in response to ideas and suggestions from our customers, so I am looking forward to the feedback from our passengers.”


March 3rd 2020: Came off service and sailed to Damen, Dunkerque (East) for refit. Work included upgrade and rebuild of her propulsion and control system.


© Julien Carpentier (Dunkerque, 06/03/2020)

March 16th 2020: Left Dunkerque (East) and sailed to Dunkerque (West) to resume service Dunkerque – Dover.

© Christophe De Langhe © Christophe De Langhe

© Christophe De Langhe

© Nicolas Lévy

© Nicolas Lévy (Livery timeline)


© Julien Carpentier  (Dunkerque, 10/06/2021)

January 21st 2022: Arrived at Dover and came off service.

January 22nd 2022: Left Dover for major refit at Fayard A/S in Odense.

“Three main things will happen on the ship:
An upgrade of the restaurants for passengers and freight drivers
Energy-efficient coating will be applied on the hull of the ship
A new funnel heat recovery system”
“Dover’s two sister ships, DELFT SEAWAYS and DUNKERQUE SEAWAYS, will also undergo refurbishment afterward.”

January 24th 2022: Arrived in Odense.

February 15th 2022: Left dry-dock.

© Peter Therkildsen

© Peter Therkildsen (Fayard A/S, 15/02/2022)

February 17th 2022: Left Odense for Dover.

February 19th 2022: Arrived in Dover to resume service Dover – Dunkerque.


“The new carpet in “Seven Seas Restaurant” takes you on a journey of the deep blue of Dover to the beaches of Calais. On a sunny day you can see all these colours in the Channel”. 



© Darren Holdaway

© Darren Holdaway (Dover, 27/02/2022)

March 31st 2022: In Severe Gale force  NW winds “reportedly” collided with mooring dolphins in Dunkerque West. Taken off service for repairs to hull.

April 5th 2022: Returned to service.

© Pieter Inpijn © Pieter Inpijn

© Pieter Inpijn (Dover, 12/10/2022)

February 1st 2023 – February 11th 2023: Planned refit at Damen Verolme BV, Rotterdam.

January 31st 2023: Came off service at Dover and sailed to Rotterdam for refit.

February 1st 2023: Arrived Waalhaven, The Netherlands.

February 2nd 2023: Arrived Rotterdam Bottlek.

Together with normal refit/refurbishment, new reception, stairs and upper landing. 

@ DFDS @ DFDS @ DFDS @ DFDS @ DFDS                                                        @ DFDS @ DFDS @ DFDS

© Steve Newberry @ DFDS

February 11th 2023: Left Rotterdam and sailed to Dunkerque.

February 12th 2023: Resumed service Dunkerque – Dover.

January 27th 2024: Came off service at Dunkerque West.

January 28th 2024: Sailed to Damen, Dunkerque East for refit.

February 9th 2024: Left Dunkerque East and sailed to Dunkerque west to resume service Dunkerque – Dover.

All information is believed to be correct and no responsibility is accepted for any errors or omissions. All items included in this article are subject to © copyright. We would like to take this opportunity of thanking: Julien Carpentier, Paul Cloke, Ed Connell, Robert Fournier, Darren Holdaway, George Holland, Pieter Inpijn, Christophe De Langhe, Nicolas Lévy, Netty, Simonwp, Peter Therkildsen and Andreas Wörteler for their assistance in producing this feature.

Special thanks go to the DFDS Group.

Article © Nigel Thornton and Ray Goodfellow (Dover Ferry Photos Group)

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