FerriesP&O FerriesPast and PresentTownsend Thoresen

MV Viking Venturer – Past and Present

IMO Number: 7358286

MV Oujda

ex Pride of Al Salam 2, Pride of Hampshire, Viking Venturer

© Brian Fisher

© Brian Fisher (Southampton, June 1983)

Steel triple screw motor vessel built in 1974 by Aalborg Værft A/S, Aalborg, Denmark (Yard no 203) for Townsend-Thoresen European Ferries as a passenger and vehicle ferry.

Technical Data

  • Length: 128.71m (overall), 119.87m (between perpendiculars)/ 143.67 m (overall) 137.67 (between perpendiculars) (1986)
  • Breadth: 20.22 m (extreme), 19.81m (moulded)/ 23.47m (extreme) 23.00m (moulded) (1986)
  • Depth: 11.61m
  • Draught: 4.53m (maximum)
  • Tonnage: 6,387 – 14,760 gross/2,918 – 7,014 net/1,616 – 1,544 deadweight
  • Engines: Two 8-cylinder Werkspoor 8TM410 “Wing” diesels, one 9-cylinder TM410 “centre” diesel
  • Power: 10,665 kW
  • Speed: 19.0 knots (service)/ 18 knots (service)
  • Capacity: 1,200 passengers, 275 cars/713 – 1,316 passengers 380 cars
  • Call Sign: GUPM, HOPD
  • IMO Number: 7358286
  • Official Number: 365082
  • Port of Registry: Southampton/UK 🇬🇧, Portsmouth/UK 🇬🇧, Panama City/Panama 🇵🇦
  • Sister ships: Viking Valiant (204) , Viking Viscount (208), Viking Voyager (205)


The first in a quartet of Townsend Thoresen’s Aalborg-built ‘Super Viking’ class”

June 1st 1974: Launched.

January 1975: Delivered to Townsend Car Ferries Ltd., Southampton, England.

January 11th 1975: Commenced service with Townsend Thoresens services between Southampton – Le Havre.

Nigel Thornton Collection Nigel Thornton Collection

Nigel Thornton Collection

© Fotoflite Image Ref 4558 © Fotoflite Image Ref 4559

🆕 © Fotoflite

May 28th 1975: Commenced services between Portsmouth – Le Havre.

© Brian Fisher  Nigel Thornton Collection

© Brian Fisher (Cardiff, 1977) (Left) Nigel Thornton Collection (Right)

© John Jones

© John Jones (Southampton, 18/10/1981)

1983: Chartered to the British Ministry of Defence for a trip to the Persian Gulf.

March 25th 1983: Introduced between Southampton – Le Havre.


1984: A new TT logo, in white, was introduced on the funnels.

© Robert J Smith  © Brian Fisher  

© Robert J Smith (Southampton, 25/08/1984)(Left) © Brian Fisher (Right)

December 7th 1984: Introduced between Portsmouth – Le Havre.

December 8th 1985: Arrived at Schichau Unterweser AG, Bremerhaven, Germany for “Jumboisation”. Fitted with larger forward sections as well as being horizontally cut in two with an additional full-length vehicle deck inserted enabling VENTURER and VALIANT to carry 60 lorries.

Dover Ferry Photos Library

  Courtesy of John Hendy

Courtesy of John Hendy

© Bob Scott

© Bob Scott (Bremerhaven, 01/05/1986)

May 19th 1986: Resumed commercial traffic.

© Bian Fisher

© Bian Fisher (Portsmouth, 01/04/1987)

1987: Following the “HERALD” disaster, from spring onwards, pale blue funnels with P&O flag logo became the norm.

Photoship  © Brian Fisher

Photoship (Left) © Brian Fisher (Portsmouth, 01/06/1987)(Right)

October 1987: There was a change to P&O European Ferries navy blue hull and funnel.

December 31st 1987: Registered under P&O European Ferries, London, England.

May 1989: Renamed PRIDE OF HAMPSHIRE.

© Peter Wearing  © Peter Wearing  

© Peter Wearing (both)

© Simonwp

© Simonwp (06/05/1989)

March 18th 1991: Sold to Investments Co, BMBF (No, 15), England. Bareboat chartered to P&O European Ferries.

© Brian Fisher  © Brian Fisher  

© Brian Fisher (both) (Portsmouth 1991 – 1990)

© Ken Larwood

© Ken Larwood

© Fotoflite Image Ref 161349 © Fotoflite Image Ref 85161  

© Fotoflite

June 22nd 1994: Final day operating between Portsmouth – Le Havre.

July 10th 1994: Commenced service between Portsmouth – Cherbourg.

September 25th 1994: During a lifeboat drill in Cherbourg, some of the boats fell straight into the water. Eight crewmen were injured.

© Malcolm Cranfield

© Malcolm Cranfield (Portsmouth, 20/10/2001)

September 30th 2002: Final day in service for P&O.

September 2002: Sold to El Salam Maritime, Panama.

October 2002: Renamed PRIDE OF AL SALAM 2.

© Juanfra Monzón

© Juanfra Monzón (Almería, 30/06/2003)

June 2003 – August 2003: Chartered to Comanav, Morocco. Introduced between Seté – Nador.

June 2004: Chartered to COMANAV, Morocco. Renamed OUJDA.

© Franks Heine  © Franks Heine  

© Franks Heine (Seté, 09/08/2004)(both)

June 14th 2004 – October 22nd 2004: Operated between Seté – Nador.

June 13th 2005 – September 21st 2005: Chartered to COMANAV, Morocco for services between Seté – Nador.

June 2006  – September 2006: Chartered to COMANAV, Morocco for services between Seté – Nador.

© Federico Bolognini

©  Federico Bolognini (Suez, 17/06/2006)

© Frank Heine  © Frank Heine  

© Frank Heine

© Franks Heine (Seté, 22/07/2006)(both)

November 2006: Services from Safaga, Egypt.

July 2007 – September 2007: Chartered to COMANAV, Morocco for services between Seté – Nador.

February 2010: Sold to Indian breakers.

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: Federico Bolognini, Malcolm Cranfield, Brian Fisher, Fotoflite, Frank Heine, John Jones, Ken Larwood, Juanfra Monzón, Bob Scott, Robert J Smith, Peter Wearing, Simonwp and Andreas Wörteler for their assistance in producing this feature.

Special thanks go to John F  Hendy.

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


  1. Went on the 83 Defence Sales trip…….what a blast…..best restaurant in the Middle east at that time !!!!!

  2. I did a few trips between Southampton and France, as one of the kitchen staff, on her in March and April of 1975.

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