If statistics ever told a story then the recent visit to Falmouth of the cruise ship Mein Schiff 4 should make people stand up and think about how much revenue is being lost to the town, and indeed throughout Cornwall, due to mega cruise ships from around the world not being able to berth alongside the docks.

My thanks for the interesting figures that follow to Phil Boddy, chairman of the Falmouth Cruise Ship Ambassadors, a dedicated team of people who meet and greet passengers on arrival at the docks.

Phil said, “It was a busy day but all went like clockwork. We received some great compliments as to how much passengers had enjoyed their visit. It’s the largest ship by far to call this year. Twenty-seven ambassadors worked the cruise call in two shifts between 0715 and 1730.”

The 96,000-ton Mein Schiff 4 was carrying 2,722 German passengers and 832 crew on her Round Britain cruise.

In an almost military style operation the first tender from the ship carried the advanced shore party along with 50 electric powered bicycles that were landed at the docks for passengers to use.

The ship’s modern tenders that can carry 160 passengers were assisted by the FalRiver

passenger vessel Duchess of Cornwall crewed by skipper Richy Warwicker and deckhand Matt Honey, tendering passengers to and from County Wharf.

FalRiver operations manager Caroline Harvey said: “The Duchess of Cornwall carried exactly 1,000 passengers on the day.”

A fleet of 39 luxury coaches carried an amazing 1,839 passengers to tourist destinations all over Cornwall as far east as Looe/Polperro and to Lands End in the west.

Three shuttle buses ran throughout the day from 0900 onwards dropping at Argos and Events Square carrying a total of 252 passengers/crew. As usual with calls of this size the ambassadors stationed people at Argos during the morning as well as an ambassador on each shuttle. A total of 607 passengers/crew opted to stroll into the town centre.

Phil said: “The average age of passengers onboard was, I would guess, around 50 which was considerably younger than usual, hence the large number of passengers who walked rather than shuttle bussed into the town centre.”

The ambassadors were established in 2006 by a local group of just six residents. Eleven years later the group is 40 strong and has proudly gained a worldwide reputation.

The group consists of mainly retired men and women all with a passion for Falmouth and Cornwall and who are keen to share the beautiful region with the thousands of cruise ship passengers who visit each year.