The World Cruise Liner, one of the worlds most expensive ships came to visit Whitehaven in August. The length of 2 football pitches and 12 decks high it anchored in the deep water beyond the harbour.
When The World first arrived the tide was at its lowest and so the passengers hoping to disembark at Whitehaven had to wait a couple of hours, before leaving the ship, when the channel would be deep enough to provide access to the sea lock.
The rusty old capstans on the harbour were a reminder of Whitehaven's maritime past and the meeting of two worlds - the past and the present. Whitehaven's shipbuilding industry failed as it was unable to provide a deep water harbour for the ever increasing size of ships. Now that historic past is part of the attraction for these visitors on one of the worlds biggest passenger vessels.
If the legend is true that Jonathon Swift was inspired to write of the Lilliputians after looking down on tiny people from the Red Flag Inn as child in Whitehaven, it easy to imagine what fantastical adventures he would have dreamt up if he had awoken to see this view from the window.
Eventually the tide was high enough and the first set of passengers left The World in one of its tenders to visit Whitehaven.
Quite a few people had gone along the piers to see the ship and were there to welcome the visitors as they entered the harbour in the tender.
A close view of the tender was available as it tied up inside the sea-lock to wait for the water level to rise to the same level as the inner harbour. The tender was a very futuristic design and designed to double up as a lifeboat should evacuation of the ship ever be necessary.
A lot of people were gathered around the lock gate, partly as the bridge was closed whilst the lock filled, but the visitors must have felt a little like they were living in a goldfish bowl.
The tender docked on a special pontoon that had been prepared against the lime tongue to allow the visitors to alight and pass through a marquee at the end selling Made in Cumbria produce.
Also around the hub area was the continental market which often visits Whitehaven selling all sorts of produce from around Europe.
Shortly after the first tender set off back to the ship carrying people from Whitehaven who had been picked to visit The World, a second tender from the vessel entered the harbour.
At the end of a beautiful warm evening with clear skies the sun set directly behind the ship as it anchored out in Whitehaven bay.
Ships of 2010
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