I was lucky enough to be on a Mersey ferry just as the Bauhinia was being guided out of the River Mersey. As I mentioned the other day she’s the biggest ship seen in the Mersey and she was in the river at the same time as HMS Ark Royal.
Although the ship looks big in the photo, only seeing for real do you appreciate just how big the ship actually is. How much steel went into constructing the ship and moreso how much did it all cost?
The BBC reports that the biggest ever ship to enter the Port of Liverpool is due to berth later today.
The Bauhinia, which weighs 158,000 gross tonnes, will berth in Tranmere Oil Terminal at 1500 GMT, carrying a cargo of crude oil from West Africa. The vessel is 8,000 tonnes heavier than previous record holder, the Nisa, which berthed into the River Mersey in 1988. Apparently the ship is not fully loaded because that would make it’s draught too deep for sailing up the Mersey.
The main traffic carrying bridge over the River Mersey is the instantly recognisable Runcorn – Widnes bridge. The bridge is actually called the Silver Jubilee bridge and it was opened in 1961 and widened in 1975-77. The bridge is a grade II listed building.
Anyways, I’ll publish more information about the bridge at a later date …the point of this post is to mention the birds. At this time of the year the bridge can resemble a scene from Hitchock’s The Birds due to the huge numbers of birds that descend upon the bridge. Starlings can be seen at dusk in thousands flying around the bridge and around the mouth of the Mersey. It’s a striking sight provided by Mother Nature and you can enjoy more of it !
On 25th January from 3.30pm there’s a Birds and Bridge talk and walk tour from Pickerings Pasture Nature Reserve. Places are limited so you’d be advised to book – call Rob on (0151) 425 4706 and mention that you read about it her at RiverMersey.org.uk