After a visit from the French Navy ship last week, we welcome the arrival of two Belgian Navy Ships, BNS Godetia (A960) and the BNS Bellis (M916) in West India Dock.
The Godetia last visited the West India Dock in 2015 with a number of other NATO ships. The ship is a command and logistical support vessel of the Belgian Navy and was launched in 1965 at the Boelwerf in Temse. Godetia has a length of 91.30 m (299.5 ft) with a beam of 14.00 m (45.93 ft) with a crew complement of around 95; 8 officers, 29 NCO’s and 55 sailors.
The Godetia undertakes fishery protection, humanitarian aid, support and supply ship for minesweepers, and acting as a command ship for NATO mine countermeasure operations.
The BNS Bellis is a Tripartite-class minehunter of the Belgian Navy which was launched in 1986 at the Mercantile-Belyard shipyard in Rupelmonde. The ship was the second of the Belgian Tripartite-class minehunters.
In 1987, the ship participated the rescue of the survivors of ferry MS Herald of Free Enterprise which capsized outside the port of Zeebrugge.
The Ship has a length of 51.5 m (169 ft 0 in) and beam of 8.96 m (29 ft 5 in), it carries a crew complement of 4 officers, 15 non-commissioned officers, 17 sailors.
It is not known how long the ships will remain in dock at this time.
It is shaping up to being a summer of community events with a number of events planned for August.
One event not to miss is the Summer Birthday Garden Party in Island Gardens which celebrates the 122nd year of the park being opened and its continual attraction for Islanders and visitors.
The event will include a number of attractions including Face painting, a Magician, Balloon artist, the Pearlies, Police and Fire Brigade, Pimm’s and Prosecco Lounge, Food and Drink, Games and Live Music.
The free event is organised by the Friends of Island Gardens who work tirelessly to improve and maintain the famous gardens and play a major role in protecting the park from developments that would impinge on its special character.
In recent years, the development of Calders Wharf which is located next to the park has raised a number of concerns about the impact to the park. If you would to find out more, find a link to the FOIG’s petition here
The Garden Party takes place on the 5th August between 12 and 5 pm.
After a relatively quiet period in the dock, we welcome the Super Yacht Gene Machine to West India Dock.
The 179.99ft yacht ‘Gene Machine’ was built by Amels in Netherlands at their Vlissingen shipyard and was delivered to her owner in 2013. Her exterior design was by Tim Heywood Design and the luxurious interior was designed by Laura Sessa Romboli.
Like many super yachts, the Gene Machine’s interior has been designed for the greatest comfort and can accommodate up to 10 guests overnight in 5 cabins including a master suite, 2 double cabins, 2 twin cabins and 4 Pullman beds. The yacht is also capable of carrying up to 15 crew onboard in 8 cabins.
The yacht is equipped with an ultra-modern stabilization system which reduces roll motion effect and anchor stabilisers.
Amenities on board include Helicopter Landing Pad, Swimming Platform, Jacuzzi (on deck), Air Conditioning, and Owners Balcony.
In the secret world of super yachts, information about ownership and how long the ship will be in dock is often hard to come by. However this yacht and the French Navy ship add a lot of interest to the dock.
We have an unusual visitor to West India Dock with arrival of the FS Lapérouse ( A791 ) which is a hydrographic survey ship of the French Navy and one of their Lapérouse-class survey ships.
Lapérouse is a current serving ship of the Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service of the French Navy and was launched at Brest in 1988.
In 2016, we had a visit from French Navy Ship Laplace which is also a hydrographic survey ship of the French Navy and a Lapérouse-class survey ship.
The ship is nearly 200 feet long and the crew usually consists of 3 officers, 10 non-commissioned officers, 18 enlisted personnel and 11 hydrographers.
It is not known how long the ship will be in dock, but a visit from this interesting type of ship is quite rare.
Although the Isle of Dogs is constantly changing, it still has a strong community spirit with a number of events throughout the year.
This Sunday ( 9th of July) sees the Christ Church Summer Fete with a number of attractions including Craft workshops and stalls, table-top sales of books, clothing, crafts, toys etc.. There will also be a BBQ and Caribbean food, Caricaturist, face painting, tombola, Bouncy castle, Tea and cakes, and live performances and much more.
The festivities begin at 12pm and there is a £1 entry fee goes towards the church fundraising. Kids can enter for 20p.
If you would like some traditional entertainment for all the family, why not make your way to Christ Church which is at the south of the Island on Manchester Road.