June 23, 1998
(Works, Services and Transportation)
Fogo Island/Change Islands ferry named after Captain Winsor
Works, Services and Transportation Minister Lloyd Matthews today took part
in a reception to officially re-name the former "MV Prince Edward" after the
late Captain Earl W. Winsor, a veteran seaman and longserving MHA in the legislature. The
ferry was purchased last year for the Fogo Island and Change Islands service.
"The Captain Earl W. Winsor is a welcome addition to the province's
fleet of marine vessels," said Minister Matthews. "Our commitment to improving
marine services is apparent in the acquisition of this vessel, in the extensive refit and
in all of the infrastructure improvements planned for docking facilities in our
communities," he added.
"I am pleased today to name this fine vessel in honour of the late
Captain Earl W. Winsor," said the minister. "Captain Winsor served the people of
Newfoundland and Labrador in the House of Assembly for 23 years. He was elected to the
legislature seven times before retiring in 1979. He worked tirelessly for the people he
represented, first in Labrador and later for the district of Fogo. Captain Winsor was also
an avid seaman and coastal skipper who served in the merchant navy during the Second World
War. Throughout his distinguished and varied career he earned the respect of his peers for
his sincerity, dedication and commitment. He remained active in the community through
membership on various organizations until his death in 1989. It gives me great pleasure to
honour Captain Winsor's longstanding commitment to the people of the province in this
The ferry was acquired last year from the federal Department of
Transportation for a purchase price of $300,000, ending a lengthy search for a replacement
marine vessel. This is a tremendous value to the people of the province says Minister
Lloyd Matthews. "When government first began to search for a replacement vessel, we
were looking at an expenditure of between $8 and $10 million. Until recently, we were
unable to find a suitable vessel within that range. More than 70 vessels in Canada, the US
and in Europe were evaluated, however, the best deal we were offered was in the range of
$18 million. Purchasing the Captain Winsor for just $300,000 was an exceptional deal. If
we wanted to build a comparable vessel it would cost between $23 and $25 million."
Since the province purchased the vessel last year, more than $2 million
has been invested to prepare the ferry for the Fogo Island and Change Islands service.
"We've also started work on the docking facilities so that the vessel can be
accommodated. The Captain Winsor is a larger vessel, capable of carrying between 55 to 60
cars, as opposed to the capacity of 35 cars on the Beaumont Hamel. Once the work on the
docking facilities is complete later this summer, the `Captain Earl W. Winsor' will begin
passenger service on the Fogo Island/Change Islands run," added Minister Matthews.
Contact: Jill Sooley, (709) 729-3015.
Biographical Sketch - Captain Earl W. Winsor
Earl Winsor was born in July of 1918 in the community of Wesleyville.
He was a veteran seaman, a wireless operator and a coastal skipper. He
earned a first class certificate of proficiency as a wireless operator before obtaining
his master mariner's certificate. He spent some time as a wireless operator on the
Labrador coast and on coastal steamers. He served as a wireless operator during the Second
His political career spanned 23 years. He was elected seven times before
retiring undefeated in 1979.
In 1956, Captain Winsor was elected to the House of Assembly,
representing the old district of Labrador North. He was re-elected there in 1959, 1962 and
again in 1966. In 1968 he was appointed Minister of Labrador Affairs and became Fisheries
Minister in 1970.
In 1971 he moved to the district of Fogo. He continued to represent the
district until his retirement.
In the community, Captain Winsor was a member of the Masonic Order, the
Orange Association, the St. John's Board of Trade and the Royal Canadian Legion. He also
served on various boards of the George Street United Church.
The MV Captain Earl W. Winsor
Formerly the MV Prince Edward, the ferry was built in 1972 for the
Prince Edward Island ferry crossing. With the construction of the Confederation Bridge,
the province of Prince Edward Island no longer required the marine vessel.
It was purchased from the federal government for $300,000 by the
Province of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1997. The estimated market value of the vessel is
$3.5 million, before refit.
The "Captain Earl W. Winsor" has a capacity to carry between
55-60 cars and 250-300 passengers.
Since acquiring the vessel last year, some $2 million has been allocated
for refit to prepare the vessel for operating on the Fogo Island/Change Islands service.
This includes engine, electrical and mechanical inspection, installation of ramps for
easier loading and off loading of vehicles, in addition to refurbishing and enhancements
of on board facilities. Ice strengthening the vessel was also a substantial part of the
The finishing touches on the refit will be complete by the end of June.
After that, the crew will begin a process of familiarization; conducting several trial
runs in coastal waters before beginning passenger service.
In order to accommodate the larger vessel, renovations to docking
facilities in Fogo Island, Change Islands and Farewell are required. This process is
Once complete later this summer, the MV Captain Earl W. Winsor will
begin operating the Fogo Island/Change Islands service. This will result in a more
efficient service with one larger vessel accommodating passenger traffic during summer
months. The Beaumont Hamel will then move to the Bell Island run.
||M/V 'Capt. Earl W. Winsor' (ex. Prince Edward)
||75.9 m (249' 0")
||74.7 m (245' 0")
||16.3 m (53' 6")
||5.5 m (18' 0")
||3.8 m (12' 6")
||Approximately 2,100 tons
|No. of Passengers:
||250 - 300
|No. of Autos:
||Detroit Diesel; 2 x EMD x 1600 BHP each
||Kamewa Controllable Pitch; Twin Screw; Twin Rudder
||One Electric 300 BHP
1998 06 23 12:05 p.m.