New RIB gets celebrity visitor

'Erebus' The 10.5m RIB 'Erebus' will be used alongside the 'RRS Sir David Attenborough'. Image: Mainstay Marine

A celebrated British veteran of the arts has visited a new RIB with the same name as a 19th century vessel in the spotlight by virtue of their latest book.

Sir Michael Palin journeyed to Pembroke Dock to go onboard Mainstay Marine’s latest vessel Erebus as he promotes his latest book ‘Erebus: The Story of a Ship’. The book documents the 1826 Pembroke Dock-built HMS Erebus, made famous by two major polar expeditions including the voyage embarked on the Franklin Expedition to find the North-West Passage, later deemed one of the greatest disasters in British polar history.

Named in honour of the pioneer Royal Navy ship, the new 10.5m self-righting RIB Erebus will be delivered to Cammell Laird shipbuilders shortly, for use alongside the UK’s new polar research vessel RRS Sir David Attenborough. The latter was built by Cammell Laird for operation by British Antarctic Survey.

Important role

Mainstay’s managing director, Stewart Graves, commented: “We are delighted to have been involved in yet another iconic project of national importance and are thrilled that Sir Michael agreed to take time out of his undoubtedly busy schedule to visit Erebus the sequel.”

Designed and built by Mainstay in accordance with MCA Workboat Code, Erebus is capable of a maximum speed of 25 knots with a full power duty cycle of 1500 hrs per year. The vessel will be used to transport personnel and supplies to and from British Antarctic Survey’s island stations as well as undertaking some scientific research.

In 2014, the sunken wreck of Erebus was finally rediscovered.

By Rebecca Jeffrey

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