Seacat Services, class-leading offshore energy support vessel operator, announces its partnership with Mainstay Marine Solutions, specialist marine engineering firm, to build the 20th vessel in its fleet, and the fifth Seacat Chartwell Ambitious design. The vessel is set to support Siemens Gamesa’s operations and maintenance (O&M) activity on the 353MW Galloper Offshore Wind Farm off the East Coast of the UK.

Ian Baylis, Founder of Seacat Services, said: “We’re delighted to be able to build our 20th boat in the UK, despite the challenges. We remain dedicated to feeding back into our own supply chain, and making sure value is felt here, by our market. It’s exciting to be able to work with the experienced team at Mainstay, who have been proactive in matching our passion with their dedication, expertise, and world-class facilities. With accomplished professionals like these at the forefront of our industry, there is still a lot to look forward to in the worlds of shipbuilding and vessel operation.”

The partnership comes amidst ongoing complexities in the UK shipbuilding market, where skill shortages and a lack of financial support from the UK Government have driven up manufacturing costs and derailed local content goals across the industry. Though progress has been made to alleviate this pressure via the Home Shipbuilding Credit Guarantee Scheme, it has yet to launch in a meaningful capacity for vessel operators and builders, who must continue to navigate harsh market forces in order to provide local content.

But despite an array of other subsidised opportunities available overseas, Seacat has continued to solely invest in UK newbuilds, with this new order taking its total spending in that pursuit to more than £65 million over the last decade. The partnership with Pembrokeshire-based Mainstay Marine represents an ongoing and enterprising commitment to bolstering the local supply chain in the face of considerable challenges.

In its support of the offshore wind market, the Chartwell Ambitious responds to the need for low-emissions, cost-effective vessels, with the aluminium catamaran’s optimised hull form offering efficient fuel use as well as stability and manoeuvrability in harsh conditions. At 25.2m in length, it has the capacity to transport up to 24 industrial personnel to and from offshore wind assets at high speed, whilst maintaining high levels of comfort and safety.

Sporting a controllable pitch propeller from Kumera Helseth and MTU-2000 series engine — its emissions reduced by a Tier-3 solution from BOS Power — the vessel will be hybrid-ready in anticipation of improved future technologies. Seacat continues its logical pathway to decarbonisation, pursuing an evolution of the high-performance catamarans in its current roster.

Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy has been a long-term partner of Seacat Services, with the developer renewing an offshore O&M support contract started in 2017. As it continues to drive the growth of offshore wind in the UK, Siemens Gamesa will entrust Seacat with the safe transfer of technicians aboard the new vessel for the next five years on the Galloper Offshore Wind Farm.

Charlotte Wood, Business Development and Sales Manager at Mainstay Marine Solutions, said: “Working with Seacat is a great opportunity for us to build a vessel that will not only support the expansion of renewable energy, but provide a tangible domestic benefit through an operator who cares deeply about maintaining the viability and attractiveness of the UK industry. The Chartwell Ambitious design is sleek and efficient, and with our materials and know-how, we’re very well placed to deliver it.”

June 2023


About Seacat Services Ltd:

Seacat Services is the class leading wind farm support vessel operator which operates internationally out of Cowes, UK, with a fleet of seventeen IACS classified multi-purpose offshore energy support vessels. Each vessel is purpose designed and constructed to conduct safe, fast, comfortable transport and transfer of personnel and equipment in the toughest of marine environments.The company works directly with developers, utilities, manufacturers and support services businesses to provide fast and efficient offshore personnel and equipment transfers and has completed contracts for customers that include Equinor, Innogy, Ørsted, RWE, Siemens Gamesa, SSE, Vattenfall and WindMW.

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About Mainstay Marine Solutions Ltd:

Mainstay Marine Solutions is a leading marine engineering firm that specialises in designing and building bespoke commercial craft. Their world-class site in Pembroke Dock, South West Wales is home to an exceptional workforce with comprehensive skill sets that include naval architecture, design, electrical and mechanical engineering, welding, fabrication, painting and shipwrighting. Committed to achieving exceptional Safety, Health, Environment and Quality (SHEQ) performance, ‘Mainstay’ is the perfect partner for all your marine engineering needs.

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