DFDS has its 150th anniversary in 2016 and to mark this special year, they decided to do something extraordinary. DFDS colleagues from different countries, offices and ships have worked together to build the world’s biggest LEGO ship.
So 17 August was a historic day for DFDS, and it was marked with a ceremony. Rikke Gransøe Lange, Group Marketing Director and the initiator of the project, started the ceremony with a cheerful speech about the background to building the LEGO ship. The aim was to get all DFDS colleagues to work together on one joint project in the anniversary year; a project that they will be able to look back on in the future. She talked about how carrying out this task proved to be something of a challenge, but which was resolved creatively, effectively and with good cooperation.
An impressive ship was built exclusively from a tonne of LEGO bricks over 900 accumulated man-hours. It is 12.035 metres long, 1.67 metres wide and weighs just under three tonnes.
Confirmation of the record from the Guinness Book of Records
After measuring the newly-built ship, judges from the Guinness Book of Records confirmed that the ship is worthy of the title and handed over the diploma at the naming ceremony on the quay at the DFDS terminal in Copenhagen.
After receiving the certificate from the judges, CEO Niels Smedegaard gave a speech about how disruption had become part of the work when they went from iron and steel to LEGO bricks as a material for building ships, something that DFDS’ founder C.F. Tietgen would certainly never have heard of. On the other hand, Tietgen knew everything about naming ships, so Niels Smedegaard asked Director of Lauritzen Fonden, Inge Grønvold, to carry out this traditional task.
Name giving for a newly built ship
The ship’s godmother and Director of Lauritzen Fonden, Inge Grønvold, was given the honour of naming the impressive structure. She cast a bottle made of LEGO bricks at the side of the ship and named her JUBILEE SEAWAYS.
The project is supported by Lauritzen Fonden, which besides being the parent company of J Lauritzen A/S and DFDS A/S, also supports projects with a social, cultural, educational and maritime focus.
“While people around the world have cheered on Olympic athletes in Rio in recent weeks, we have gone home and cheered on our own world record in DFDS. The main aim was to celebrate our 150th anniversary together by building something big to mark such an outstanding year. It could only be done with the help of all employees, each of which have left their fingerprints on the beautiful ship. I am proud that together we reached this goal,” says Niels Smedegaard.
LEGO ship goes on a European trip
The ship will embark on a long journey in the DFDS network to visit many locations in the near future. JUBILEE SEAWAYS has already visited various locations in Denmark.
Next, it will be sailed to the Tall Ships Regatta at Blyth in the UK, before continuing to Gothenburg, Calais, Dieppe, Baltics, Kiel, Oslo, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Immingham and Karlshamn. The LEGO ship will also be part of the exhibition at Lego World in Utrecht and Copenhagen. You can visit the DFDS Facebook page for more footage, pictures and updates of the journey.
The visit dates will be as follows:
- 26/8-28/8 Tall Ships race in Blyth
- 1/9 – 4/9 Tall Ships race Gothenburg
- 9/9 Calais
- 11/9 Dieppe
- 16/9-21/9 Baltics – Klaipeda, Tallinn, Riga, Estonia
- 22/9 – 26/9 Kiel
- 30/9 – 9/10 Oslo
- 15/10 Amsterdam
- 18/10 – 24/10 Lego World in Utrecht
- 4/11-5/11 – Eisbeinessen Hamburg
- 25/11-1/12 – Immingham
- 2/12-5/12 – Karlshamn
- 12/12-16/12 – Copenhagen