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Public Inquiry Call as Costs of Scottish Lifeline Ferries Soar Again - to Quarter of a Billion Pounds

31st March 2022
Shipyard costs: Public inquiry call in Scotland as costs of a pair of lifeline (CalMac's Arran & Uig, Harris,North Ust) ferries soars to a quarter of a billion pounds. Above Afloat also adds the second newbuild (hull#802) at Ferguson Marine shipyard in Port Glasgow, located downriver of the major city. Shipyard costs: Public inquiry call in Scotland as costs of a pair of lifeline (CalMac's Arran & Uig, Harris,North Ust) ferries soars to a quarter of a billion pounds. Above Afloat also adds the second newbuild (hull#802) at Ferguson Marine shipyard in Port Glasgow, located downriver of the major city. Credit: HeraldScotland-twitter

Scottish Ministers admit that further problems with lifeline ferries languishing in a Clydeside shipyard will delayed by eight months and will add a further £8.7m to the costs taking the bill to a quarter of a billion pounds.

Finance secretary Kate Forbes admitted that cabling issues has meant further delays to the ferries ever setting sail - a day after an public spending auditor's report revealed doubts that they will ever go into service.

Audit Scotland criticised a “multitude of failings” in the delivery Glen Sannox (Arran service) and Hull 802 which are languishing in the state-controlled Ferguson Marine yard were now nearly five years late and will cost the public two-and-a-half times the contract costs - £240m.

After the latest costs uplift and delay emerged, Scottish Conservatives' shadow transport secretary Graham Simpson said the SNP should be "ashamed" by the auditors analysis and called for a public inquiry.

Scottish Labour shadow transport secretary Neil Bibby challenged Ms Forbes to resign if the latest rescheduling is not stuck to.

Herald Scotland last week reported on the shipyard saga. 

Published in Shipyards
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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Shipyards

Afloat will be focusing on news and developments of shipyards with newbuilds taking shape on either slipways and building halls.

The common practice of shipbuilding using modular construction, requires several yards make specific block sections that are towed to a single designated yard and joined together to complete the ship before been launched or floated out.

In addition, outfitting quays is where internal work on electrical and passenger facilities is installed (or upgraded if the ship is already in service). This work may involve newbuilds towed to another specialist yard, before the newbuild is completed as a new ship or of the same class, designed from the shipyard 'in-house' or from a naval architect consultancy. Shipyards also carry out repair and maintenance, overhaul, refit, survey, and conversion, for example, the addition or removal of cabins within a superstructure. All this requires ships to enter graving /dry-docks or floating drydocks, to enable access to the entire vessel out of the water.

Asides from shipbuilding, marine engineering projects such as offshore installations take place and others have diversified in the construction of offshore renewable projects, from wind-turbines and related tower structures. When ships are decommissioned and need to be disposed of, some yards have recycling facilities to segregate materials, though other vessels are run ashore, i.e. 'beached' and broken up there on site. The scrapped metal can be sold and made into other items.

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