Captain Pat Farnan retires as Port of Cork Harbour Master and Deputy Chief Executive

Captain Pat Farnan retires as Port of Cork Harbour Master and Deputy Chief Executive

Monday 04 February 2013


Port of Cork announces the retirement of Harbour Master and Deputy Chief Executive, Captain Pat Farnan after 33 years with the company.

Captain Farnan joined the Port of Cork in 1980 as Assistant Harbour Master and since then, has built a reputation as one of the leading Harbour Masters in the country. He also served as President of the European Harbour Masters Association from 1996 to 1998.

The Harbour Master is primarily responsible for the safety of all vessels within the port and advises the Board of the Port Company on all nautical matters. In the case of the Port of Cork, he is also responsible for the management of all aspects of port operations, including pilotage, towage and crane operations.

Prior to joining the Port of Cork, Captain Farnan enjoyed a sea-going career with Irish Shipping Ltd, joining as a cadet and subsequently serving in all ranks on a wide variety of vessels, trading worldwide. He left Irish Shipping in 1980 to join the Port, having served as master for two years.

Captain Farnan has also served as Harbour Master of Bantry Bay since 2002.

Captain Farnan lives in Cobh with his wife Carmel and this year celebrates 40 years of marriage. He has two sons, Keith based in Dublin and Patrick based in Cork.

Commenting on his retirement, Captain Farnan said “It has been a privilege to have been the 12th person to hold the position of Harbour Master since 1820.

“I joined the then Harbour Commissioners in 1980 at a particularly fortuitous time as the Port was about to enter an exciting phase of its development with the construction of new facilities at Ringaskiddy. This facilitated the expansion of the Port and in the intervening years the deepwater facilities at Ringaskiddy allowed the Port to accommodate large Panamax vessels and more recently a deep sea container service. Now it is established as one of the leading Ports in the country.

“Among the many highlights for me during my time at the Port of Cork was the return of cruise liners to Cork with the berthing of the QE2 at Ringaskiddy in 1990 and the development of the cruise facilities in Cobh to meet the challenge of the ever increasing size of cruise liner culminating in the berthing of the “Independence of the Seas” and “Queen Mary 2” two of largest cruise ships. The Tall Ships visit in 1991, which was the first time the event was ever hosted in Ireland, was also a great personal highlight of my career.

“One of the major strengths of the Port is the combined efforts of every individual who make the day-to-day running of the Port possible, at all levels and the high level of morale that was maintained over the years. I was fortunate in having a great team supporting me in operations.”

Deputy Harbour Master, Captain Paul O’Regan will assume responsibility as Acting Harbour Master and Captain Pat Murphy will be the Acting Deputy Harbour Master. Both will bring their many years of experience and expertise to continue the efficient operations of the Port.

Brendan Keating, Chief Executive of the Port of Cork concluded “Pat has given outstanding service to the Port of Cork and he retires today with our very best wishes.”


For further information, please contact:

Sinead Kavanagh
Commercial Marketing Executive
Port of Cork Company
Custom House Street
Tel: +353 (0) 21 4625 375
Mobile: +353 (0) 86 3849974
Fax: +353 (0) 21 4276 484
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