Red Funnel, the Isle of Wight specialist has confirmed that it is to spend £3m on a major refurbishment of its ro-pax ferry Red Eagle in the New Year.
The work will be similar to the new look given to Red Falcon and Red Osprey in 2014 and 2015 and will be carried out by local marine businesses. The main contract has been awarded to Trimline in Southampton, with aluminium fabrication work contracted to Wight Shipyard Ltd in East Cowes. The refit will be carried out in Southampton.
The refurbishment of Red Eagle, coupled with the order for Red Jet 7, already amounts to an investment of over £10m in Red Funnel’s cross Solent services by the consortium of UK and Canadian pension funds who acquired the business in July 2017. The decisions underpin the new owners’ commitment to growing the cross-Solent market and helping to stimulate the Isle of Wight’s economy.
Kevin George, Red Funnel’s CEO commented “We are delighted to make this exciting announcement so soon after ordering Red Jet 7. The refit of Red Eagle will bring the interior right up-to-date with a contemporary new look and a class-leading travel experience for customers which matches the best in the UK ferry industry. Once again we are particularly pleased to award the work to local suppliers, supporting jobs in both Southampton and in East Cowes on the Island.”
Work on Red Eagle will start in January 2018 and will be completed in time for the summer timetable which starts on 29 March. The project will see a significant increase in the number of internal seats for customers and involves a complete refit of B Deck including a state-of-the-art galley and new toilets. On A Deck, there will be a dedicated pet’s lounge and a purpose built Signature Lounge offering a premium club experience for discerning travellers.
Modern seating styles and tables, subtle colours and clever LED lighting will create spaces which are perfect for socialising, working or just relaxing. High-capacity Wi-Fi, USB charging points, air conditioning and digital entertainment are just a few of the features available to everyone on board. Outdoor space to soak up the sun will be available on A and AA Decks.
For more information about the transformation of Red Eagle please visit redfunnel.co.uk/newlook
Notes to editors
About Red Eagle
Red Eagle was the last of three Raptor Class ro-pax ferries ordered by Red Funnel from Ferguson Shipbuilders at Port Glasgow in the early 90’s. Replacing Netley Castle, Red Eagle entered service in 1996 and travels 45,500 miles every year between Southampton and East Cowes. To accommodate a strong growth in traffic, the ship was lengthened in 2005 by 9.6m and an additional through car deck was added with capacity for 70 cars or small vans. The work was carried out by Remontawa shipyard in Gdansk.
About Red Funnel
Red Funnel is the original Isle of Wight ferry company with roots tracing back to 1820. Based in the UK port of Southampton, Red Funnel carries 2.3m passengers and over 800,000 vehicles on its ferry route between the UK port of Southampton and East Cowes and 1.1m passengers between Southampton and West Cowes on its Red Jet Hi-Speed service.
In addition to ferry travel, Red Funnel is the only cross-Solent operator to offer ferry inclusive bonded holiday accommodation, attraction tickets, festival and event tickets and activity packages. Sub-brands include ‘Red Jet’ (the Hi-Speed passenger only ferry service serving West Cowes) and two food & beverage brands, ‘Steam Coffee Company’ and ‘ReFuel’.
The Company is a founder member of Visit Isle of Wight Ltd, the Island’s not for profit destination management organisation and Red Funnel sponsors or supports most of the Island’s premier events including the IW Festival, Cowes Week, Isle of Arts, The Red Funnel IW Literary Festival, IW Newport Jazz Festival, Isle Walk Festival, Ventnor Fringe Festival and Wolverton Manor Garden Show as well as a range of community and niche interest events.
Red Funnel’s 2017 Charity of the Year is Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance.
For further Red Funnel press information contact:
|Isle of Wight/Hants
023 8023 8001
Sophie or Frances
020 3697 4200