The Shetland-based engineering firm, Malakoff Limited, last week hosted a keel laying ceremony for a new 14m catamaran workboat, commissioned by industry giants, Cooke Aquaculture.

Above: Profile of the 14m catamaran to be built by Malakoff Limited.

The vessel was designed by Malakoff’s in-house design team and is the first to be laid down in its new boatbuilding facility at the Greenhead base, Lerwick. Although this particular vessel is destined for the aquaculture industry, the hull design meets the Seafish standard and other workboat certification rules – in anticipation that the design will be adapted for use in the fishing industry.

Katrine Johnson from Cooke Aquaculture accepts an engraved decanter from Malakoff project manager Ryan Stevenson, to mark the official keel laying of Hull No. 21.

Designated ‘Hull No. 21’, the 14m vessel will be built in 6mm steel, with reinforced wear points. It will be fitted with two 280hp engines and a hydraulic system to run two capstans and a knuckle boom crane.

Malakoff has been building boats since the 1870s, and has always focused on engineering services for maritime industries. The business is best known for its Voe Boat range – a type of small, durable, aluminium workboat that can be configured to suit almost any requirement. Over the years, the company has launched hundreds of Voe boats, with the range still popular today.

However, Malakoff also has in-depth experience of the design and construction of larger steel workboats, stretching back to the mid-1980s and the early days of salmon farming in Scotland. The company has previously launched mono-hulls, multicats and catamarans, all of which were built to the highest marine standards and display exceptional durability.

Malakoff’s dedicated boatbuilding team – Left to right: Scott Grant, Luke Cromwell, Grzegorz Zebrowski (boatbuilding foreman), Martin Mackay and Robbie Groat. Malakoff has formed the team by a combination of moving some of its existing staff to the new workshop and creating new positions. The company’s boatbuilding development plan also highlights the need for an increasing level of skilled staff, to better meet the requirements of the industry.

The keel laying marks the start of significant expansion to the Malakoff team’s boat building services. Malakoff project manager, Ryan Stevenson explained: “The new fabrication facility is a huge asset – with over 80,000sq ft, we can have up to three of these types of vessels under construction at one time.

“We have all the required trades under one roof and there is enough space to allow an extremely efficient build process, with different areas for prefabrication and assembly. Basically, steel comes in at one end and a finished vessel comes out the other.

“We are looking forward to working with clients across the aquaculture, fishing and marine industries, to produce versatile and durable vessels that precisely meet their requirements. We are always happy to discuss potential commissions, whatever stage they are at, and encourage any enquiries from interested parties.”

For more information on Malakoff, Ryan Stevenson can be contacted on: 01595 695544 or via email at:


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