UK: Alicat Workboats Unveil New Boat Hoist and Support Services

Building for the future: Richards Dry Dock and Engineering Limited & Alicat

Shipyards are not only busy building, but also providing repair facilities for the many different types of vessels being used in the offshore wind industry. One shipyard investing in the repair sector, as well as building their own line of support vessels, is the Great Yarmouth Company, Richards Dry Dock and Engineering Limited (RDDE).

Their repair work has been limited to the lift availability at the yard. However now there is a plan to install a 200t lift at their dry dock facility, which will increase their ability to lift larger workboats for repair as apposed to dry docking, offering a faster and cost effective solution for all operators and not only vessels that have been built in their own yard. They plan to have the this new facility operational in 2013.

From building 20m Australian GMD designed vessels in the past, the new builds of Alicat, are moving up in scale. There is a 22m vessel being built at the moment and there are plans for a 25m vessel in the future. They are also building for stock with currently two 20m vessels due for completion and available for buyers in August and October. Of the 15 builds to date 11 have been powered by Caterpillar C32 engines to propellers and 3 have been Rolls Royce jets powered by MAN engines.

Alicat are also moving to having their aluminium cutting done closer to home by Aalco in Southampton. Previously it has been done in Australia and flat pack shipped to Great Yarmouth.

The RDDE shipyard dates back to the days of wooden drifter fishing vessels in the herring fleet. Their local labour force has vast experience in marine repair and build and the local supply is important to them. Director, Nigel Darling told Offshore WIND recently that quality at the yard in both new builds and repair is important and will be maintained with vessels fitted out carefully rather than with gadgets. The yard is part of the Gardline Group, the largest employer in Great Yarmouth.

Dick Hill