MS Clipper Ranger

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MV Clipper Ranger At Stornoway, 19 September 2013.jpg
Clipper Ranger passing Arnish lighthouse near Stornoway on 19 September 2013
  • Dart 7 (January 1999)
  • Lembitu (September 1999)
  • Celtic Sun (March 2000)
  • Lembitu (October 2001)
  • RR Challenge (April 2005)
  • Challenge (October 2007)
Owner: Challenge Shipping Co.
Operator: Seatruck Ferries
Port of registry:
Ordered: 20 September 1994[1]
Builder: Astilleros de Huelva, Huelva, Spain[1]
Yard number: 570[1]
Laid down: 13 May 1996[1]
Launched: 21 June 1997[1]
Completed: 4 April 1998[1]
Status: In service
General characteristics
Class and type: R Class
Length: 122.32 m (401 ft 4 in)[1]
Beam: 19.80 m (65 ft 0 in)[1]
Draught: 6.21 m (20 ft 4 in)[1]
Installed power: 7,400 kilowatts (9,900 hp) total
  • Main - 2 x 9 cylinder Wärtsilä 9R32 diesel engines.
  • Auxiliary - 2 x 600 kilowatts (800 hp) Wärtsilä engines.
  • 600 kilowatts (800 hp) Ulstein bow thruster
Speed: 17 knots (31 km/h)
Capacity: 12 passengers, 88 trailers
Crew: 20

MS Clipper Ranger is a freight ferry built in 1998, which was in service with Seatruck Ferries on the Heysham - Belfast route until the latter half of 2012. In September 2013, she was chartered to Caledonian MacBrayne for the freight service between Ullapool and Stornoway.


MS Lembitu was built by Astilleros de Huelva and launched in 1998 for the Estonian Shipping Co., Tallinn. She was named after Lembitu of Lehola, a 12th-century Estonian leader. On 20 April 1998 she was chartered by P&O European Ferries for use in the Irish Sea. On 2 September 1998 she was chartered by Dart Line for use on the Dartford - Vlissingen route and renamed Dart 7 in January 1999. On the 15 September 1999 she was chartered by International Atlantic Line for use on the Southampton - Bayonne route and renamed Lembitu once again. In November 1999 she was chartered by Unknown Operator for use between Marseille and North Africa. In March 2000 she was chartered by P&O Irish Sea Freight for use on the Liverpool - Dublin route, and renamed Celtic Sun. In October 2001 the charter ended and she reverted to the name Lembitu once again, being chartered by Norse Merchant Ferries for use on the Heysham - Dublin route. In December 2001 she returned to Estonian Shipping Co., and was put into service on the Tallinn - Helsingfors - Rostock route. She was then in service with Scandlines on the same route. In January 2005, she was chartered by Channel Freight Ferries for use on the Southampton - Radicatel route. In March 2005 she was chartered by Norse Merchant Ferries for use on the Belfast - Heysham route. In April 2005 she was sold to Elmira Shipping of Piraeus, Greece and in the same month was registered under the Maltese flag for Challenge Shipping Ltd., Valletta, Malta, being renamed RR Challenge at the same time. In 2005 she was chartered by Seatruck Ferries for use on the Heysham - Warrenpoint route. She was sold to Attica Enterprise of Piraeus in September 2005 and purchased by Seatruck on 1 October 2005, being renamed Challenge at the same time. She was registered to Challenge Shipping Co. Ltd on behalf of Clipper Denmark A/S on 13 February 2008.[2] Challenge was renamed Clipper Ranger in 2008 and was subsequently put on the Heysham - Larne route. In April 2012, Seatruck announced that the Heysham - Larne service would be closed, and on 7 May 2012, Clipper Ranger made her last departure from Larne, and was placed onto Seatruck's new Heysham - Belfast route.

Clipper Ranger was withdrawn from service and laid up in Birkenhead, Liverpool for the latter half of 2012 and remained alongside in January 2013.

It was announced on Wednesday 13 March 2013 that Clipper Ranger was being chartered by P&O Ferries on the Liverpool to Dublin route from Monday 25 March 2013.

On 10 September 2013, it was announced that Clipper Ranger was to replace MV Muirneag on the freight ferry run from Stornoway to Ullapool. She is chartered to operate the service until August 2014, when the new Loch Seaforth will take over the Lewis service,[3] replacing both MV Isle of Lewis and Clipper Ranger. After undertaking berthing trials at both Stornoway and Ullapool on 19 September, she began her charter on 21 September. On 28 January 2014, Clipper Ranger collided with a pier at Stornoway, causing damage to the ship's hull.[4]

Sister vessels[edit]

External links[edit]

  • Photos of the ship under various names.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Clipper Ranger (19014)". DNV GL Vessel Register. Det Norske Veritas. Retrieved 2013-12-17. 
  2. ^ "M/S LEMBITU" (in Swedish). Fakta om Fartyg. Retrieved 2008-03-28. 
  3. ^ "MV Muirneag replacement announced". Stornoway Gazette. 10 September 2013. Retrieved 28 September 2013. 
  4. ^ "Freight ship MV Clipper crashes into pier at Stornoway". BBC. 28 January 2014. Retrieved 28 January 2014.