TOWLINES

A new home is required for the tug-tender 'Calshot' (Wikimedia Commons) A new home is required for the tug-tender 'Calshot' (Wikimedia Commons)

Desperate efforts are underway to save the tug/tender Calshot and for it to be preserved further as a tourist attraction.

Launched in 1929 Calshot’s career included assisting ocean liners in Southampton and as HMS Calshot, transporting sections of the Mulberry Harbour to France as part of the D-Day operation. It has been moored in Southampton but the trust that runs it has been told by port owner ABP that its berth is required, potentially making it homeless.

The trust has proposed moving it to nearby Mayflower Park to become a tourist attraction, another example of the challenges preserving a country’s maritime heritage.

Kotug has won the ‘Autonomous & Remote Operations Award’, part of the Marine Propulsion Award 2019.

The award recognises the research done with autonomous tug sailing and follows two successful tests with the training Rotortug RT Borkum in Rotterdam, one involving the operation of a remotely controlled tug deployed as an unmanned firefighting platform. The project is a joint industry effort comprising Kotug International, Rotortug BV, Onboard, M2MBlue part of Wireless Logic, Alphatron Marine and Veth Propulsion.

French tug builder Piriou is reinforcing its position in West Africa with the acquisition of a majority stake in Marine Industrie Service (MIS) in Abidjan.

The new company will be re-branded Piriou Côte D’Ivoire and will benefit from the support of the Piriou group in general allowing investment in the workforce enhancing its range of services. Piriou is in the process of expanding globally, including within this region, Reunion, Senegal and Maroc in synergy with Piriou Nigeria. MIS was taken over by the current owner Bruno Villers from his father in 2006 and Mr Villers states he is committed to serving existing customers, his employees and his partners.

Other European business news has seen Italy’s Scafi Societe di Navigazione S.p.A. announce its purchase of 50 per cent of Vernicos Tugs & Salvage’s shares and adopting the new name Vernicos Scafi Tugs & Salvage.

The transaction was based on the exchanging of shares along with a cash transaction by Scafi, the new company reported as comprising a fleet of 70 vessel worth €220m. The new company will concentrate its efforts in Greece and Italy with longer-term ambitions to expand into the wider eastern Mediterranean as well as developing its salvage capabilities.

By Peter Barker

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