Two ferries with Gallic Flair

By Derek Longly

I was fortunate enough to enjoy several voyages on these two attractive ships.  The outfitting of the Arromanches was relatively utilitarian indicating her completion and entry into service shortly after WWII, however she was considered good enough to carry the President of France to England on one occasion when she sailed not to Newhaven but to Dover. 

In late November 1957 I boarded the ship at Dieppe to return from a visit to Paris during which I had the misfortune to go down with Asian Flu.  Even in the harbour the ship was being moved around by the wind and rough water.  When we left there was a maelstrom awaiting us.  The scenes on board became Dantesque with virtually everyone desperately unwell.  One young lady was carried bodily out of the lounge to the after deck by two sailors, her face grey, hair lank and looking near death.  A number of Spanish ladies sat around me had eaten well before departure and all soon found out why a plastic bowl had been placed on the table by a smiling steward shortly before departure!

For some reason, perhaps because I was already less than fit I was completely unaffected by the violent movement of the ship. However, I was less than appreciative when reaching Newhaven to be greeted by my parents pink faced and smiling when they said 'Hello old chap, had a nice trip?'

The Lisieux was far more sophisticated and sumptuous to travel aboard and was the ferry on which I first sampled 1st Class travel including some delicious french cuisine in the restaurant. 

Photo:Arromanches arriving Newhaven

Arromanches arriving Newhaven

Derek Longly

Photo:Arromanches at Dieppe

Arromanches at Dieppe

Derek Longly collection

Photo:Lisieux arriving at Newhaven

Lisieux arriving at Newhaven

Derek Longly

Photo:Lisieux stern view

Lisieux stern view

Derek Longly

Photo:Lisieux at speed mid Channel

Lisieux at speed mid Channel

Derek Longly collection

This page was added by Derek Longly on 09/06/2011.
Comments about this page

Lovely photos, keep them coming please! Lisieux was such a looker, the only minor irritation being the Strombos funnel. Great when viewed from abeam, but not so pretty when seen from ahead or astern. And that final photo shows what a greyhound she was, 25+ knots!

By Andy Gilbert
On 10/06/2011

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