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Jun 03 - Portland, Dorset

Position Report for 1500UTC, Sunday 3rd June 2007:
The JCR is currently alongside at Portland, Dorset

The 2006/7 Antarctic season came to an end for the James Clark Ross on the morning of Thursday 7th June 2007 when she berthed at Portland.

The James Clark Ross alongside at Portland.  Photo M.Gloistein
The James Clark Ross alongside at Portland. Photo M.Gloistein

Upon arrival the ship started to discharge the cargo from the Antarctic, which will initially return to Cambridge and then some will be sent on to other institutes around the world.

Stores, which in some cases had been ordered many months ago but were not required until we arrived back in the UK, were awaiting us on the jetty and these were soon loaded onboard. It is a bit like Christmas as the boxes are all opened to see just what parts are there. Many of the items will be required for the forthcoming refit period.

The Purser,  Richard Turner,  loading stores at Portland.  Photo M.Gloistein
The Purser, Richard Turner, loading stores at Portland. Photo M.Gloistein

The stores that we receive from Cambridge come in large reusable boxes, and once these are emptied they are sent back to Cambridge. These boxes may well contain stores or equipment for the Antarctic bases the next time they are used and may be loaded as cargo in September, before the ship heads south again.

Empty packing cases to be sent back to Cambridge and reused.
Empty packing cases to be sent back to Cambridge and reused.

The weekly diary would not be complete without some mention of the wildlife in the area that we are working. Portland is no different in that there is a host of interesting wildlife to be found, if you look hard enough. The picture below shows a duck sitting on the nest, which is located where a block forming part of the jetty has come away. This block has no doubt been missing for a number of years as the plant seems well grown.

Duck
Duck

This duck is sitting on the next just feet from the ship's side, and does not seem to be too bothered by our activity.

The James Clark Ross will depart from Portland at 1500UTC today and make the short passage to Portsmouth overnight. Once at Portsmouth the ship will enter the drydock and the refit period will commence.

All being well I hope to bring you some information on the work being carried out this year, along with some pictures from the drydock period.