The biggest ship ever to navigate the Thames: Giant cargo vessel leaves British waters bound for Singapore... operated by a crew of just 13

Mon, 20 October 2014

The biggest ship to sail up the Thames has left the London Gateway port in Essex and is sailing for its next destination Singapore via the Suez Canal at a steady speed of 23 knots.

The huge cargo ship docked at London Gateway before sunrise yesterday morning, guided in by three Port of London Authority tugs.

Edith Maersk was serviced in number two berth by five of the port's cranes - the largest in the country.

Thanks to London Gateway, gargantuan E-class ships can  be accommodated at three ports in England - Felixstowe and Southampton being the others

Edith Mærsk is 430yds (397m) long and can carry 13,500 20ft and 40ft containers. It is believed that it was carrying a cargo of clothes and electronic goods when it arrived in England.

The vessel, the second largest container ship in the world, was launched in 2007 and can navigate the Thames following the opening of London Gateway port in the Thames Estuary.

The Gateway cost £1.5bn to build and was opened last year.  It is located on the former 1,500-acre Shell Haven site, which closed in 1999. 

Edith Mærsk is more than 50 per cent longer than Titanic and four times the length of a football pitch.

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