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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23 Comments on "Isle of Wight shipyard to refit Red Jet 3"

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Steve Goodman
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… Read more »
Barry Lawrence
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… Read more »
Steve Goodman
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… Read more »
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… Read more »
Steve Goodman
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,… Read more »

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

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?

… 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… Read more »

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
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… Read more »

There is not room within the RFs current site to go vertical and even it there was it would need to have a clearance under it of around 6 metres to allow for HGVs. That would really not enhance East Cowes one little bit.

Steve Goodman
? BS; the sky is the limit, as demonstrated world wide for a very long time. As has been pointed out more than once before, using more than one level is not only possible (like on Red F. ferries), but if done properly would really enhance E.Cowes and nature (like the sort of ‘iconic’/ ‘destination’ planted structures erected around the world by people more enlightened than RF,… Read more »
Luisa Hillard

Red Funnel currently own two marshalling yards. Why can’t one be decked – like they do at Sainsburys – and keep the other for trucks/lorries, coaches, caravans and campervans?

The only real barrier to such a scheme is cost. Red Funnel don’t want to pay for it.

Luisa Hillard

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.


Congratulations to Wight Shipyard Ltd. on winning the order.


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.


tr How many is some . If I am right there is no money for the heave lift crane ,and if that is true were will this money come from

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… Read more »

Take a look at the boat hoist at Venture Quays, that may be better than the one at Kingston in terms of water depth but it is hardly “deep water” with the top of the dock 5.5 metres above chart datum so at low tide you could have less than 1 metre of water there.


But it will not keep silting up, as will Kingston Marine Park.


sorry, lost an L on vessel.