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Brittany Ferries (Shipping company, France)

Last modified: 2010-11-13 by ivan sache
Keywords: brittany ferries | brittany ferries truckline | disc (black) |
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[Brittany Ferries house flag]

House flag of Brittany Ferries - Image by André Coutanche, 11 May 2004

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Presentation of Brittany Ferries

BAI (Bretagne-Angleterre-Irlande), was founded in 1972 by Alexis Gourvennec, a local farmers' trade-union leader, with the support of the local administration. The main goal of BAI was to export the agricultural products of northern Brittany, especially cauliflower, to the British Isles. There is a very ancient tradition of vegetable growing in the area called the green belt or the golden belt, around Morlaix, Roscoff and Saint-Pol-de-Léon. In the 1920s, young men from Roscoff migrated for months to England, where they sold onions from village to village. These Breton bikers were highly estimated and locally called "Johnnies", probably because several of them were named Jean. It is believed that 9,000 tons of onions were sold that way between 1920 and 1930.
To develop the agricultural exportations, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Morlaix built in the 1970s a new deep-water port in Roscoff, which was the first port used by BAI. The company started with a few trucks, and was renamed Brittany Ferries in 1974.

The company is mostly owned by the local collectivities, that is Region Bretagne, the departments and the municipalities. Today a main element of the economical development of Brittany, Brittany Ferries has kept its initial freight cargo activity, purchasing in 1985 the Truckline company from group Worms. Truckline is now a subsidiary of Brittany Ferries, transporting trucks on the Coutances-Poole line
In 2003, Brittany Ferries operated 7 ferries and was the second passenger carrier under the French flag, after SNCM. During the 2001-2002 season, the company transported 2.6 millions of passengers and 171,000 trucks. The lines served by the company are:

  • Caen-Portsmouth;
  • Cherbourg-Poole;
  • Santander-Plymouth;
  • Cherbourg-Portsmouth;
  • Saint-Malo-Portsmouth;
  • Roscoff-Plymouth;
  • Roscoff-Cork.

Source: ISEMAR (PDF document, no longer available online)

Ivan Sache, 11 December 2001

House flag of Brittany Ferries

The house flag of Brittany Ferries - taking that to mean the flag which is flown on the vessels - uses the wavy "blue over orange separated by a white stripe" motif which looks as though it ought to be a flag, but isn't.

André Coutanche, 11 May 2004

Brown's Flags and Funnels (1995) [lgr95] shows the same flag. A similar flag but with the blue legend "Brittany Ferries" arranged in lower arc underneath, probably a shore flag, is shown by Josef Nüsse. I am not sure whether the bottom band is red or orange, possibly being a combination shade but given as orange by Hornsby in his 1999 Coastal Ships & Ferries on describing the logotype which also appears on the funnels for which photos appear to suggest either depending on the light.
According to Brown's Flags and Funnels (1982) [lgr82] there was an earlier flag of blue with an orange logotype.

Neale Rosanoski, 2 July 2004

Shore flag of Brittany Ferries

[Brittany Ferries house flag]

Corporate flag of Brittany Ferries - Image by André Coutanche, 11 May 2004

When you arrive at Portsmouth ferry terminal you are greeted by four flags flying from the top of the terminal building. They are the P&O house flag, the Union Jack, the Tricolore and a Brittany Ferries flag, based on the logotype which appears on their advertising. I am not 100% sure about the orange rule under the name; I can't see it on my indifferent photos, but I have left it in because in all other respects the flag matches the printed logotype.

André Coutanche, 11 May 2004

Brittany Ferries Trucklines

[Brittany Ferries Truckline house flag]         [Brittany Ferries Truckline house flag]

House flag of Brittany Ferries Truckline; left, 1995 - Image by Jarig Bakker, 16 July 2004; right c. 1999 - Image by Jorge Candeias, 18 March 1999

Truckline Ferries France S.A. was formed in 1978 by CGM and Worms. They sold it in 1984/5 to Brittany Ferries. According to Ships Monthly 4/1999 its two vessels are now in the livery of the owners.
According to Brown 1995 [lga95] the flag was white with a panel resembling a flapping flag being yellow with a narrow white horizontal band and overall a black and white target.

Neale Rosanoski, 22 March 2004

Carga e Transportes (Cargo and Transportation), the Monday's supplement to the Portuguese newspaper Público shows a yellow flag with a large black disc centered charged with a narrow grey ring near the edge.

Jorge Candeias, 18 March 1999