Isle of Wight shipyard to refit Red Jet 3

Red Funnel has signed a contract with Wight Shipyard Ltd to carry out the work at The Columbine in East Cowes, marking the first time the vessel has been refitted on the Island since it was built by FBM Marine.

Red Jet

Lucy shares this latest news from Red Funnel. Ed

Red Funnel has announced that Red Jet 3, its 1998 Cowes built Hi-Speed passenger catamaran will undergo its annual survey and refit on the Isle of Wight later this month (February 2017).

Local company to carry out refit
The original Isle of Wight ferry operator has signed a contract with Wight Shipyard Ltd to carry out the work at The Columbine in East Cowes, marking the first time the vessel has been refitted on the Island since it was built by FBM Marine.

The planned work involves inspection of the hulls, removal and refurbishment of the twin MJP waterjet units, painting, antifouling and re-certification. Due to the weight limitations of the hoist and facilities at Venture Quays, unusually both MTU 396 engines will have to be removed from Red Jet 3 before she can be safely lifted from the water.

Supporting for marine jobs on the Island
Kevin George, Red Funnel’s CEO, commented:

“With a net tonnage of 77 tonnes, Red Jet 3 is really too big for the facilities available at Venture Quays. However, by removing her engines prior to lifting we have found a way to refit her in Cowes and provide further support for marine jobs on the Island.

“In the not too distant future, we hope to see the development of new marine facilities at Kingston which can be used to build and repair much larger vessels. Kingston would allow us to refit Red Jet 4, Red Jet 6 and all future Red Jets on the Island and bring significant benefits to the local economy.”

Peter Morton, MD of Wight Shipyard, said:

“In addition to our current new-build work for London based Thames Clippers, we have been successful in winning a number of important refit contracts. This valuable order from Red Funnel demonstrates our unrivalled skills base and competiveness in the fast ferry repair market.”

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Monday, 13th February, 2017 10:23am



Filed under: Cowes, Ferry, Island-wide, Top story, Travel

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Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.


  1. Steve Goodman

    14.Feb.2017 9:26am

    Kevin and his Red F. friends could of course ‘provide further support for Island marine jobs’ and more by improving their existing property (vertically, with as much planting as possible perhaps?) without needlessly threatening existing skilled jobs, businesses, and homes by demanding a greedy landgrab and more public money to boost their balance sheets.

    Any news yet on just how and when the fields and mud at Kingston will become Kevin’s dream development, and how it will be paid for?

    • Barry Lawrence

      14.Feb.2017 10:40am

      Bl**dy hell, some people are never satisfied and are determind to find bad news out of any story possible. Perhaps if there was less NIMBYism, a less blinkered out look and a willingness to occasionally look at change without being frightened then the Island may (slowly) start to improve its prospects. Constructive criticism is always more preferable. And no, I don’t work for any of the ferry companies and yes, I live in East Cowes right next to the existing marshalling yard.

      • Steve Goodman

        14.Feb.2017 2:11pm

        Bl**dy hell, some people won’t be satisfied with anything other than spinning the bad news about RF’s refusal to improve their own site while demanding public money and the needless damaging land grab described above. “NIMBYism” obviously has nothing to do with seeing the sense of, welcoming, and willingly working to improve our existing assets and environment, and obviously nothing to do with with RF’s “blinkered out look” and determination to adversely interfere with vital Island jobs, businesses, and homes. Unlike RF, some of us have been (slowly but steadily) improving E.Cowes and Island prospects. It’s also regrettable that RF prefer to reject constructive criticism (and all the offered free advice, ideas, and even gardening). And yes, I work voluntarily, spend, and frequently stay in East Cowes, and want to see the existing marshalling yard improved without the greedy wish to needlessly adversely interfere with other lives and properties.

    • Steve, Have you actual made the effort to have a look at the progress that has been made at Kingston? Work is progressing and the site will provide a better option than venture quays which can not accommodate the refit of the other 2 RJs as they are far too big for the 70tonne hoist. Do you replace the hoist at VQ or build a new one on a site that is 6 times the size of VQ?

      • Steve Goodman

        14.Feb.2017 2:27pm

        Because I’ve actually been busy with efforts to improve things elsewhere, I’ve not been able to have a look at Kingston for some time, which is why I asked about progress; so, just when will the transformation from fields and mud become Kevin’s dream development, and how it will be paid for?

        And will RF guarantee to pay a fair price to use it, and if so, for how long will they guarantee to pay to use it?

        • They have made a lot of progress on the site and have part of the access road in place, they did have some services like gas and water to move and others to put in place. All that coupled to sorting the site levels out most of which is complete.

          • Steve Goodman

            14.Feb.2017 7:17pm

            Thank you for the progress report.

            Are you also able to help us with the missing information about the completion date, funding, and any RF guarantees please?

  2. electrickery

    14.Feb.2017 10:41am

    … or we could build a decent terminal in a sensible place and relieve East Cowes of the chaos and blight of ferry traffic.
    We would allow WL share it and thus vacate Fishbourne (possibly already in their minds as their announcement about the new docking technology accentuated its transferability).
    Once EC was relieved, it would be possible for vital marine industries like Wight Shipyard to expand their deep-water facilities and capabilities without the devastating move to Kingston.
    Who is “we”, you ask? Anybody except RF/WL, but majority-owned within the Island. There’s no shortage of money out there looking for sensible infrastructure projects (as opposed to HS2, Mallyshag Tower etc…)

    • How do you get “devastating move to Kingston”, surely the development at Kingston should be welcomed as it gives businesses far more room to expand as the site is 6 times the size of Venture Quays.

      • Steve Goodman

        14.Feb.2017 3:12pm

        It is certainly possible to get “devastating move” of RF beyond it’s own site. Surely the development RF are refusing to do, to improve their own site vertically without a greedy harmful land grab at E.Cowes, should be welcomed as it gives the business far more room to expand, and leaves other businesses free to decide if they want to remain and/or expand using a new site (and all preferably without use of precious public money with no guaranteed return).

      • Luisa Hillard

        14.Feb.2017 7:34pm

        If Venture Quays is lost and marine industry is relocated to Kingston (if that’s even possible) the loss of business – approx 200 potential employees – would have a big impact on small, local businesses who provide lunches and shopping. The local economy would suffer.

        • Use Phoenix yard for lorries and caravans.
          Access to the ferry via Castle St. and Dover Rd. Trinity yard becomes two deck, similar to Sainsburys for cars. Accessed via Castle Street south of Phoenix yard.
          With a bit of luck the eyesore that is Lallows grid iron shed would be encompassed into Trinity yard.

  3. Congratulations to Wight Shipyard Ltd. on winning the order.

  4. Many Thanks too to RF for putting their valuable business with Wight Shipyard Ltd. I remember the local building of Red Jet 6 also.

    Some of us appreciate your actions RF.

  5. A look at the planning application for Kingston Marine Park, shows that the dredged depth in the dock is 1 mtr above chart datum. LW springs @ 0.8 mtr above chart datum means that at LW springs the dock will be dry by 0.2 mtr.
    The dock lies East-West, the ebb tide runs south-north. The silt on the east bank will drop nicely into the dock on the ebb tide. The mooring pontoon will also have very little depth at LW. springs.
    Fortunately the planners have realised this because the plans show a passenger carrying catamaran hanging in the dock and not a deep draught vesse, I wonder why?
    If Messrs George and Morton wish wish to move their build/refit facility to Kingston, excellent.
    With the 300 berth Victoria Marina due to be built on the north end of Venture Quays(Columbine) it is vital that the Venture Quays deep water dock and hardstanding remain to service these and other boats and not become a marshalling yard for R.Funnel

  6. sorry, lost an L on vessel.

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