Tight squeeze as Germany’s Olympic cruise ship ties up in London docks

/, Cruise News/Tight squeeze as Germany’s Olympic cruise ship ties up in London docks

deutschland.jpgHopes of superyacht SeaDream returning to the Thames to provide luxurious accommodation for the 2012 Olympics may have been dashed, but at least one vessel is going to be berthed in London for next summer’s Games.
And on Wednesday evening MS Deutschland squeezed through a lock gate with inches to spare as it visited South Quay on a test run, becoming the largest vessel yet to tie up in the shadow of Canary Wharf’s skyscraper office blocks.
The 22,4000-ton ship, which can accommodate 548 passengers, is 175 metres (574 feet) long and has a beam of 23 metres (75 feet). The lock between the Thames and the dock is just 178 metres long and 24 metres wide.
British Waterways’ dockmaster Billy Smith said: “The manoeuvre into the confined space of West India Lock shows how good planning, combined with the skill of the teams involved worked to ensure the berthing operation was successful.
“I have worked on the River Thames and in the Docks since 1962, and have lived on the Isle of Dogs for most of my life. This is the largest ship that I have ever seen navigate through the lock. To fit her in we use the high tides and insist she’s brought in stern first, an unusual and interesting operation for the river pilots and the captain.
“I’m quite pleased the tides meant this was a night-time operation, as the addition of a crowd would have been extra pressure during such a technical manoeuvre.”
It took about two hours to get Deutschland through the lock from midnight and the ship will be leaving on Friday.
The operation will be repeated next summer when the ship returns to provide accommodation for members of the German Olympic Committee and their guests.

By | 2017-06-15T16:00:04+00:00 14 July 2011|Cruise Destinations, Cruise News|2 Comments

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.


  1. Paul Tremaine 15 July 2011 at 1:36 pm - Reply

    Great to see a real cruise liner in Canary Wharf – let’s hope this opens the dock up to more such ships. It must be a good spot to dock during a cruise.

  2. Edith from Canary Wharf 15 July 2011 at 2:34 pm - Reply

    My manager loves it and keeps starring at it, we may buy him a ticket to go to Germany….

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