Coastal Workboats and Stornoway Port Authority partner to lease state-of-the-art Marine Engineering Workshop


Coastal Workboats has announced a new partnership with Stornoway Port Authority to lease the state- of-the-art Marine Engineering Workshop at Goat Island.

Coastal Workboats has entered into a 10-year lease agreement with the Port Authority, which sees the Devon company relocating their fabrication to the Stornoway site where they will build their range of workboats including those designed by and/or ordered by renowned Dutch shipbuilder, Damen. Initially, Coastal Workboats will be constructing an electric workboat, funded by a £6.2m million grant from the UK government. Projects are scheduled to commence before the close of 2023.

This agreement is set to create 25 jobs within the local marine manufacturing sector, further strengthening the economy of the region.

Coastal Workboats is a leading builder of steel and aluminium commercial Workboats and provider of associated support services. The company is based between Devon and Scotland with the new Stornoway facility becoming Coastal Workboats’ primary fabrication centre. The new facility will be supported by Coastal Workboats 3D CAD design to allow greater efficiency in the fabrication process that itself is planned to include the use of advancing technologies. This approach joins with the company’s commitment to work with local colleges and training centres to ensure future opportunities for industry entrants and the continued upskilling of current workforce.

The move enables work to immediately begin on the delivery of the all-electric Damen E-LUV. A UK first, the vessel will be suitable for use in the ferry industry and aquaculture sector. With trials set to commence in 2025 on Shetland’s Papa Stour to West Burrafirth route, the project is part of the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 3 (CMDC3), which was announced in September 2022, funded by UK Government and delivered in partnership with Innovate UK. CMDC3 allocated £6.2m to Coastal Workboat’s project, with further funding supported by Damen to deliver this £9m project.

The construction of the Marine Engineering Workshop at Goat Island was made a reality with funding contributions from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (CNES), the Scottish Government's Regeneration Capital Grant Fund (RCGF), and Stornoway Port Authority.

Alex Macleod, Chief Executive at Stornoway Port Authority Chief Executive, said: “We are excited to embark on this journey with Coastal Workboats. This partnership reaffirms our commitment to fostering innovation and growth within the marine industry. The facility at Goat Island is world-class, with overhead cranes specifically designed for vessel construction and we are thrilled to support Coastal Workboats as they undertake these ambitious projects. This agreement also marks the return of a dedicated shipbuilder in Stornoway for the first time in 100 years, and we are proud to have played our part in bringing this industry back to the island.”

Coastal Workboats director Brian Pogson said: “As a family-run company, we’ve taken pride in building Coastal Workboats on a foundation of community; actively engaging with a local workforce and supplier network throughout each chapter of our work. We’re therefore thrilled to continue this family and friends ethos with our move to Stornoway - investing in, learning from and growing with a fantastic community with a national reputation.”

The project is supported by partner National Shipbuilding Office, with NSO CEO RAdm Rex Cox saying:
The National Shipbuilding Office is very pleased to see the opening of Coastal Workboats’ brand new manufacturing facility in Stornoway Port. The NSO are hugely supportive of Coastal Workboats’ expansion of their manufacturing capability, which should allow them to capitalise on the current opportunities in the workboat sector. Shipbuilding brings significant benefits to a local area; this new facility will bring c.25 new highly skilled and well-paid jobs and will have a positive impact on the local economy and community.”

Damen Shipyards UK Sales Manager Mike Besijn said: “Damen support Coastal Workboats in their move to Stornoway, Scotland. This first-class boat building facility is close to many of our joint customers in the inter-island ferries and the aquaculture industries. It is our goal to support Coastal’s long term commitment to the facility and their drive to create sustainable local work by assisting in the continuity of future orders and supporting the build of a wider range of Damen designs. For today, this initial order of the Damen E-LUV is the perfect first step to demonstrate the capabilities of both companies.

You can share this post!

Submit News