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May 2002
Left: At Corsewall lighthouse in December 2001; Right: As new at Stranraer in July 1983.

British Rail beginnings
After spending more than 20 years on the Stranraer to Larne/Belfast route, the Stena Galloway finally left service in February 2002.   Built as the Galloway Princess, she was the smallest and oldest of four sisters constructed for British Rail in 1980/81.

Change of owner
She passed to Sea Containers ownership in 1984 and then to Stena Line in 1990 when she was renamed Stena Galloway.   After HSS Stena Voyager entered service in 1996 the Irish operation moved to Belfast, and Stena Galloway along with sister Stena Caledonia assumed freight duties.

The end
Following a reorganisation of Irish Sea services at the end of 2001, she became surplus to requirement.  
She is the longest serving car ferry at Stranraer and the last in a series of princesses on the route.  

Princess Golden Era
During the 1970's when the Antrim Princess and Ailsa Princess were on the Stranraer to Larne service, Sealink took the opportunity to brand it “The Princess Route”.   Here Antrim Princess is caught just as she arrives at Stranraer in July 1983.

Above left: Along with the rest of the British Rail ferry fleet, Galloway Princess was sold to Sea Containers in 1985.   She is seen here arriving at Stranraer in July 1984, with the British Rail logo removed from her funnels in preparation for the privatisation process. 
Above right: Stena Galloway wearing Sea Containers livery basks in a hazy shade of winter in December 1992 at Stranraer.    Although Stena Line bought the Sealink ferry fleet in 1991, they didn’t repaint the vessels into corporate colours until 1995.

Stena Antrim (laid up) and Stena Galloway at Belfast in September 1996.
The Last Waltz
Click to enlarge photos
Those princesses in full
Passenger Ferries   Car Ferries
Princess Louise 1872 - 1892   Princess Victoria (IV) 1947 - 1953
Princess Beatrice 1875 - 1904   Caledonian Princess 1961 - 1971
Princess Victoria (I) 1890 - 1910   Antrim Princess 1967 - 1985
Princess May 1892 - 1914   Ailsa Princess 1971 - 1982
Princess Victoria (II) 1912 - 1934   Galloway Princess 1980 - 2002
Princess Margaret 1931 - 1961      
Princess Maud 1934 - 1947      
Princess Victoria (III) 1939      


External Links
Definitive reference book - Ferries of the British Isles and Northern Europe
Regular ferry information - European Ferry Scene magazine
Links to official sites of ferry companies
Photographic history of ferries

Photo-Transport Website Links
Princess Route information
Galloway Princess in fog
Ferries in Fog
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