The Ben-my-Chree left the island as usual this morning but it went to Birkenhead
However, last night’s 7.45pm sailing from Douglas to Heysham and this morning’s 2.15am return were cancelled because of the stormy weather.
Tonight’s sailing to Dublin scheduled for 7.30pm and the return at 1am have been cancelled.
Instead, the Ben-my-Chree will travel to and from Heysham to allow delivery of freight supplies to and from the Isle of Man.
Dublin passengers booked on the cancelled sailing will be transferred to the Heysham 7.45pm sailing and will be given onward connections, at Steam Packet expense.
All passengers will be transferred to the evening sailing to Heysham unless they opt for other arrangements.
The Steam Packet is trying to arrange a charter aircraft for foot passengers from the cancelled Dublin sailing, subject to availability.
Passengers should contact the Steam Packet on 01624 661661.
The return sailing from Birkenhead is running late. The Steam Packet is asking all passengers and vehicles to check in no later than 7.30pm for tonight’s sailing to Heysham.
Steam Packet chief executive Mark Woodward said: ‘I would like to sincerely apologise for the disruption to passenger travel plans at this key time of the year.
‘I assure passengers that we have exhaustively examined all other options before choosing this course of action, which I believe is the best compromise available to us in ensuring that people get to where they need to be and that gifts, food and other essential supplies are delivered on time for Christmas.’
John Quaye, chairman of haulier Manx Independent Carriers, added: ‘We have been weighing things up and without this decision the majority of our parcels, traffic and perishables would not reach the consumer in time for Christmas.
‘It must have been a difficult decision for the Steam Packet Company, but in our opinion was a good call and the right decision.’
Steam Packet sailings were also cancelled earlier on Friday and on Wednesday evening and early Thursday morning.