Side Quest: Abandoned Ship, Duke Of Lancaster

Updated: Sep 27

Otherwise known as 'The Fun Ship'

"It doesn't look too fun..."

It's strange to live somewhere all your life and never know there's a weird, abandoned ghost ship just around the corner. Well, I say 'just around the corner' when it's about an hour's drive, but because I live on a peninsula, driving around to get to the location takes a while.

Located in Holywell, North Wales, the Duke Of Lancaster has been docked for nearly 50 years, once being a rather enticing cruise (or passenger) ship which would travel between Belfast and Heysham between 1955 and 1975, then would change to travel between Holyhead and Belfast. Typically, once cruising, it would travel to Spain, Denmark, Norway, Netherlands and Belgium. Not bad for a ship made in Belfast.

Upon retiring, it was bought by a Scouser to digivolve into this weird place to 'have fun'. What a concept! Hence the nickname 'The Fun Ship'.

That didn't work. Eventually, some popular artists were allowed to leave their mark on the hull of the ship, to allow itt o act as a minor art showcase (which is actually really cool), but along with that, many of the coin operated arcade machines inside were also acquired by businesses in the business of making business with the coin operating machine business, but that's none of my business who's business wants with that business... Huh?

Anyway, there's some decent history to this ship, that's the important thing. I implore you to look into it. Implore? Beseech? Adjure? I need to stop drinking the cider tonight.


Present Day

"What does it look like now?"

Well, I mean, there's not a lot to look at nowadays. The ship is currently in a waiting list to be transformed into something potentially great (and unique to the area).

On the other hand, you could also see it as a current attraction to ghost hunters, because it looks creepy inside, yet somewhat prestine (apparently). The exterior now looks like any other boat. The artwork was removed recently and replaced with a fresh coat of paint, which is boring. I missed my opportunity to photograph the art myself. But, this must mean the current owner is taking the rejuvination seriously to repaint it. For all I know, this could be the next 'place to be' in the near future! If anything, I'm looking forward to seeing the future of this ship, and I'll try to document it's future if I can.

So what else can I say about this ship? Not much really. It's cool knowing it's somewhat nearby and there's a potential future ahead for it, but at the same time, I wish I was able to explore it's interior. Now that'd be badass. I'd be able tocycle over and it'd be like a Fallout mission, just imagining Mirelurks roaming inside, á la Rivet City's abandoned side (with Pinkerton living inside).

However, there is this video I came across on Youtube, which shows the inside of the ship. In recent times, I imagine there wasn't a lot of worth inside, but decades ago there would have been the arcade machines and much more.

You are free to walk up to the shore, behind the Fun Ship Market, or behind the gates on the walkway to the left of the dock. But you cannot go up close to the ship, it's locked off and there's CCTV everywhere.