Thursday 14th May 2015
The newest ferry on Portsmouth Harbour, Harbour Spirit, will be open for public viewing on Thursday 14 May before she goes into service later in May.
Berthed alongside the pontoon at Gosport, guided tours of the new ship will be conducted by members of the crew between 10am and 3pm. You do not need to book, but each tour will comprise of a maximum of 20 people.*
The Harbour Spirit can take up to 300 passengers and is capable of operating anywhere in the Solent. The ferry has been provided with increased inside seating (92 compared to 75 on the Spirit of Gosport. The forward saloon area is also more enclosed and better protected from the elements.
There are improved facilities for wheelchair users, with dedicated wheelchair spaces in the main saloon, on the starboard side, and easy access to toilets for passengers with reduced mobility. In response to customer demand, more cycle space has been
provided and we can also remove the seats on the aft end of the open main deck to give additional stowage for bikes and motorbikes if required.
The ferry was designed by locally-based naval architects at Houlder Ltd, which also supervised the construction. Gosport Ferry appointed the Tehnomont shipyard in Croatia to build the vessel, following a thorough tender process involving companies in the UK and across Europe.
The name of the Harbour Spirit was chosen as the winning entry from a public competition. David Hurman, from Gosport, who suggested the name, said: “I thought it was important that the name of the new ferry should reflect the way that Portsmouth and Gosport have come together through the regeneration made to the harbour area.”
The ferry service is a vital lifeline to the people of Gosport. The ferry service delivers 72,000 trips and over 3 million passenger journeys per year. With the main roads in and out of Gosport already highly congested, the ferry takes the burden of the equivalent of 42 million miles off the road every year – that’s the same as 84 return trips to the moon!
*We are unable to permit unaccompanied members of the public on the vessel i.e. who are not part of the tour.
Source: Gosport Ferry website