Shipping in the Channel

  On a clear day, this is the view from the top of the hills near the old Grand Shaft Barracks in Dover.  The cliffs are part of the Nord Pas de Calais - the northern French coast - just north of the town of Calais.  It is often said that, with a powerful pair of binoculars, you can tell the time on the town hall clock!  With a reasonable pair you can clearly see the industrial area to the north of Calais.  At night, the lights of the towns and along the main roads can be clearly seen.

A small coaster can be seen heading west through the Straits while a Seacat fast ferry from Belgium is turning to approach the western entrance to Dover Harbour.

The picture below, taken from the Deal road, just behind the Castle, shows just how busy the shipping lanes are.  One ferry is leaving port while another turns in the harbour to enter the berth.  A cruise liner (the Constellation?) has just left the harbour and another is heading out of the picture to the east.  A third ferry can just be seen crossing astern of a west-bound freighter, and two other freighters can be seen in the distance.  Just out of shot to the east (left) were at least 3 more vessels heading west.