Suffolk

World's largest container ship MSC Oscar in Felixstowe

The MSC Oscar in Felixstowe
Image caption The MSC Oscar is shorter in length than the CSCL Globe but can carry more containers

The newly-crowned largest container ship in the world has arrived at Felixstowe for its first visit to the UK.

MSC Oscar is shorter in length than the previous holder the CSCL Globe, which docked in Felixstowe in January, but can carry 124 more containers.

It is 396m (1,300ft) long and has a capacity of 19,224 standard containers.

Clemence Cheng, chief executive of Port of Felixstowe, said it was a "very happy day" for the port.

Image caption Spotters took up their positions to watch the ship on the horizon at about 09:00 GMT
Image caption The MSC Oscar (left) passes the MSC Banu on the horizon as the latter was leaving Felixstowe
Image caption More people gathered at Landguard Point as the MSC Oscar negotiated the channel into the port
Image caption The MSC Oscar had sailed to Felixstowe from Holland

More than 200 people lined the beach between the public viewing platform and Landguard Point to welcome the ship's arrival, although the ship was not carrying a full load.

'Fascination'

Barrie Bridle, 57, from Southampton, was spending the week in Felixstowe to see the ship.

"I work in the marine industry and we get a lot of shipping in Southampton, but it's always nice to see something different and we don't get them that big in our port," he said.

"She'll be just as impressive going out, hopefully with a few more boxes on her."

Graham Meadows, 60, from Ipswich, said he had a "fascination" with its size.

"I missed the Globe in January because I was away, so I got down here early this morning," he said.

"I've just finished a night-shift, so I'm tired and I want to go to bed, but I also hope to come down at night and photograph it before I go to work.

"My partner understands my interest in photography, so she accepts it whether it's wildlife or anything else."

Image caption The Port of Felixstowe said MSC's continued use of Felixstowe was a "seal of approval"
Image caption The MSC Oscar is docked at berths eight and nine
Image caption As the MSC Oscar was docking, the MSC's ER Pusan was following close behind
Image caption The CSCL Globe, with a capacity of 19,100 standard containers, visited Felixstowe in January

MSC Oscar

  • Built and launched at Daewoo's shipyard in South Korea in 2014
  • Cost £93m ($140m)
  • Named after Oscar, son of Diego Aponte, president and chief executive officer of MSC
  • Deck is the size of four football pitches
  • Draught (distance between bottom of hull and the boat's waterline) is 50ft (16m)
  • Could carry 1.15 million washing machines
  • 35 crew members

Source: MSC


The MSC Oscar had sailed from Wilhelmshaven in Germany and will leave Felixstowe on Tuesday before heading to Rotterdam in The Netherlands and then on to China via Algeciras in Spain and the Suez Canal.

Mr Cheng said MSC had worked with the port for the past 30 years and that its continued business, despite the added option of London Gateway, was a "seal of approval".

"We're giving them the service that they want," he said. "It's good for the port, good for Suffolk and good for the country."

The size of a container ship is defined in terms of its load capacity.

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