No freight, but St Malo dockers in dispute to allow passenger services from Jersey

PROTESTS in St Malo continue to block freight links with the islands.

Disgruntled stevedores barricade the entrance to St Malo’s ferry port (28523807)
Disgruntled stevedores barricade the entrance to St Malo’s ferry port (28523807)

On Tuesday, French stevedores barricaded the entrance to St Malo’s port using burning street furniture during yet another bout of industrial action.

It prevented Brittany Ferries’ passengers from boarding and Condor put its passenger services to Jersey under review.

Now Condor has been told its passenger sailings can go ahead.

Meetings took place between the stevedores, their representatives and the port’s sous prefet, and an interim agreement was reached.

Condor’s operations director Elwyn Dop said: ‘We are grateful that the St Malo authorities have brokered a temporary arrangement with the dockers that should see us sail Condor Rapide this weekend as planned.

‘It is also understood that discussions are under way which could bring a permanent solution.’

Problems first arose last month when SMM, a ship-handling company owned by Morvan Fils, which is part of the Condor Group, and four other marine businesses, went into liquidation with the loss of 32 jobs.

‘Obviously any ongoing disruption is regrettable and totally unacceptable, so we look forward to being able to resume all sailings in due course,’ said Mr Dop.

Customers with weekend bookings are being contacted, and foot passengers will be told to carry their own luggage as stevedores are not available.

Passenger sailings have been negotiated to run between the port and Jersey tomorrow and on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

n The weekly freight service linking the Channel Islands, St Malo and Portsmouth cannot go ahead.

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