British Channel Island Ferries (BCIF)European Ferries Group (EFG)FerriesMarlinesP&O FerriesP&O Normandy FerriesPast and PresentTownsend Thoresen

MV Lion – Past and Present

IMO Number: 6723654

MV Adinda Listara 101

ex Portelet, Baroness M, Portelet, Lion

© Mark Piacentini

© Mark Piacentini

Steel twin screw motor vessel, built by Cammell, Laird of Birkenhead in 1967 for Messrs. Burns & Laird (Yard No. 1326) as a passenger and roll-on roll-off car ferry for the Irish Channel service. 

Technical Data

  • Length on Deck: 111.10m (364.3 ft) (overall), (340 ft) (between perpendiculars)
  • Breadth of Hull: 17.10m (58.2 ft) (extreme)
  • Depth: (36.7 ft) (moulded)
  • Draught: 4.30m (14 ft) (maximum)
  • Tonnage: 3,333 gross (1967), 6,280 (1985), 1,204 net (1967), 2,433 (1985), 932 deadweight (1967), 1,412 (1985)
  • Engines: Two 12-cylinder Crossley four-stroke single-acting diesels
  • Power: 7722 kW
  • Speed: 19 knots
  • Capacity: 1,200 passengers, 170 cars on the car deck and 40 commercial vehicles on the folded car deck
  • IMO Number: 6723654
  • Official Number: 307690
  • Call Sign: GXVA
  • Registry: Glasgow/UK 🇬🇧, Belfast/UK 🇬🇧, London/UK 🇬🇧, Nassau/Bahamas 🇧🇸, Limassol/Cyprus 🇨🇾, Kingstown/St Vincent and Grenadines 🇻🇨, Indonesia 🇮🇩


September 20th 1966: Keel laid.

August 8th 1967: Launched by Mrs Wright, wife of Burns & Laird General Manager.

Nigel Thornton Collection Ian Collard Collection

Nigel Thornton Collection (Left) Ian Collard Collection (Right)

December 21st 1967: Lion delivered to Burns & Laird, Glasgow, Scotland.

Nigel Thornton Collection

December 27th 1967: Displayed in Glasgow.

December 29th 1967: Displayed in Belfast.

January 3rd 1968: Commenced service between Ardrossan – Belfast. Force 9 gale delayed maiden voyage by 90 minutes.

  © Alasdair Young

Nigel Thornton Collection (Left) © Alasdair Young (Right)

January 15th 1968: Repeatedly thrown against the quay at Ardrossan during severe storm. Out of service for two weeks for repairs to hull and damage to the then wooden belting.

February 5th 1968: Resumed service after repairs.

  © Kenneth Whyte

© Kenneth Whyte

January 5th 1971: Ardrossan – Larne (night sailings for vehicles and commercial traffic) in addition to her daylight service between Ardrossan – Belfast

© Ron Baker 

© Ron Baker (Left) Nigel Thornton Collection (Right)

September 19th 1971: Conducted berthing trials at the Gurrock linkspan

September 20th 1971: First commercial call at Gourock.

Nigel Thornton Collection

Nigel Thornton Collection

October 1st 1971: Company taken over by to P&O Short Sea Shipping, England.

September 28th 1973: Registered to Belfast Steamship Co, Belfast, Northern Ireland.

March 31st 1975: Introduced by P&O. Continued between Ardrossan – Larne.

February 12th 1976: Final sailing between Ardrossan – Larne.

February 17th 1976: Left Ardrossan for Le Havre

February 20th 1976: Transferred to Southern Ferries Ltd., London, England. Rebuilt, including bow visor, at Chantiers de l’Atlantique, Le Havre, France.

Nigel Thornton Collection

Nigel Thornton Collection
© Fotoflite © Fotoflite
© Fotoflite

April 8th 1976: Introduced between Dover – Boulogne on bareboat charter to Normandy Ferries.

© Fotoflite© Paul Sturm

© Fotoflite, Stéphane Poulain Collection (Left) © Paul Sturm (Right)

1978 (spring): Repainted with light blue hull with Normandy Ferries in white letters

December 28th 1979: Arriving at Boulogne in a gale at about 10.25, was blown across the harbour from berth 13 (the original 1952 berth) westwards to the trawler slipway which she touched with her stern. The slipway was put out of order and the trawler on it was damaged. Fortunately it was high water and three tugs came to the LION’s aid. After an unpleasant two hours all was well and following a divers inspection the LION left for Dover at 13.50. The next day the TIGER suffered engine trouble at Dover and promptly went out of service for two days. The LION left for three weeks dry-docking at Flushing on December 30th, 1979 and so consequently there were no P & O sailings until the TIGER resumed at 16.30 on the last day of the year (1979)

Nigel Thornton Collection  Nicolas Lévy Collection  

Nigel Thornton Collection (Left) and Nicolas Lévy Collection (Right)

© Derek Longly  © Derek Longly  

© Derek Longly

August 31st 1978: Registered to P&O Normandy Ferries Ltd, London, England.

© Simonwp

© Simonwp (Dover, 01/07/1979) 

© Fotoflite Ref 351760 © Fotoflite Ref 351761

🆕 © Fotoflite, (both)

January 31st 1980: Re-commenced service from Dover and released the TIGER for her own overhaul which lasted until February 16th. Both reappeared with the fleets new P&O hull and funnel markings.

© Fotoflite © Fotoflite  

© Fotoflite, (both)

Nigel Thornton Collection  © Tony Garner

Nigel Thornton Collection (Left) © Tony Garner (Dover, 12/09/1981) (Right)

© Ken Larwood  © Ken Larwood  

© Ken Larwood

© Brian Fisher  © Brian Fisher  

© Brian Fisher

© Ken Larwood    


© Ken Larwood (all)

© Jean-Guy Hagelstein

© Jean-Guy Hagelstein

1984: Operated Southampton – Le Havre services, then returned Dover – Boulogne.

Nigel Thornton Collection  Nigel Thornton Collection  

Nigel Thornton Collection  Nigel Thornton Collection  

Nigel Thornton Collection

November 2nd 1984: Collided with Dover Breakwater.

Nigel Thornton Collection

November 7th 1984: To Chatham Naval Dockyard to have her “cowcatcher” straightened after collision.

© Michael Woodland  © Michael Woodland 

© Michael Woodland

January 4th 1985: Sold to European Ferries Plc, (Townsend Thoresen). Commenced service between Portsmouth – Le Havre.

© Brian Fisher

© Brian Fisher  

January 1985: During a dispute over better redundancy terms, used to block the Continental Ferry Port at Portsmouth.

© Steffen Weirauch

Nigel Thornton Collection (© Steffen Weirauch)

February 1985: Went to Humber Ship Repairers, Immingham for annual overhaul and was inspected by Greek interests.

© Simonwp

© Simonwp (Imminghan 04/02/1985)

April 24th 1985: Sold to Thenamaris Shipping Inc, Limassol (Marlines), Cyprus. Renamed BARONESS M. Departed for the Mediterranean and rebuild.

Roy Thornton Collection

Roy Thornton Collection

1985 (Late): Remained idle.

May 25th 1986 – September 1986: Operated between Ancona – Igoumenitsa – Patras – Piraeus – Izmir.

April 5th 1987: Chartered to British Channel Island Ferries, renamed PORTELET. Introduced between Weymouth – Jersey – Guernsey.

© Simonwp

© Simonwp (Portsmouth 01/04/1987)

© Brian Fisher  © Brian Fisher  

© Brian Fisher (Weymouth 07/1987)

© Simonwp

© Simonwp (Portsmouth 01/08/1987)

October 1987: Renamed BARONESS M, laid up in Weymouth.

© Ken Larwood

© Ken Larwood

April 1988: Chartered to British Channel Island Ferries, renamed PORTELET and commenced service between Weymouth – Jersey – Guernsey.

October 1st 1988: Completed her charter and reverted to the name BARONESS M, operated between Larnaca – Jounieh, Lebanon.

1990: Operated between Piraeus – Larnaca – Israel for a short period.

© Bernd Crause

© Bernd Crause

February 24th 1990: Whilst on a journey from Larnaca to Greece came under fire from a gun-boat. Withdrawn for repairs.

© Simonwp

© Simonwp

1991: Operated between Brindisi – Corfu – Igoumenitsa – Patras.

© Frank Heine  © Frank Heine  

© Frank Heine (Patras 12/07/1994)

© Bernd Crause  © Bernd Crause

© Bernd Crause

© Bernd Crause

© Bernd Crause

© Frank Heine  © Frank Heine

© Frank Heine (Bari 03/08/1996)

January 1997: Sold to Equester, Shipping, Kingstown, Saint Vincent & Grenadine.

January 24th 1997: Left Piraeus for Indonesia. Later commenced operations in Indonesia.

2002: Renamed ADINDA LESTARI 101.

© Jonathan Boonzaier

(Reproduced with kind permission of Micke Asklander @ Faktaomfartyg)

March 2004: Sold for scrapping in Bangladesh.

April 12th 2004: Arrived at Chittagong Roads, Bangladesh for breaking.


All information is believed to be correct and no responsibility is accepted for errors and omissions. All items included in this article are subject to ©. We would like to thank: Micke Asklander (Faktaomfartyg), Ron Baker, Ian Collard, Bernd Crause, Brian Fisher, Fotoflite, Tony Garner, Jean-Guy Hagelstein, Frank Heine, Ken Larwood, Derek Longly, Nicolas Lévy, Stéphane Poulain, Simonwp, Paul Sturm, Michael Woodland, Andreas Wörteler and Alasdair Young for their assistance in producing this feature.

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


  1. my first ever ferry I went on i remember getting wet feet the crew where washing down the decks a lovely little ship

  2. I travelled on LION on Tuesday 15th May 1979 on a school trip to Holland with St Pauls School Winchmore Hill, London UK. when I was 10 years old, crossing from Dover to Boulonge.
    According to the school diary of the event, which I have just found in my personal files, it sailed at 11h20, and arrived at 13h50, and the crossing was very smooth !
    ‘Remember it to this day !

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