The Tiffany II pictured in Dartmouth. Photo: Damen.

Bigger and better: Tiffany II delivered to trout farmer Kames

Scottish trout farmer Kames was this week taking delivery of a new £1.5 million-plus workboat from Coastal Workboats in Exeter.

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The 22-metre landing utility vessel Tiffany II is a larger replacement for the Tiffany of Melfort, which was damaged beyond repair when it slipped its moorings at Loch Pooltiel, Skye during Storm Aiden in October 2020. The 19-metre vessel was carried north and sank on rocks off the Shiant Isles, east of Harris.

“There were some good lessons learned from the first time around, and the realisation that a little bit of additional deck space would be useful. She’s not just bigger, she’s a modified design that’s better suited to our operation, so it should be much more efficient overall,” Kames managing director Neil Manchester said.

The Tiffany of Melfort, which was just two years old, being raised in the Shiant Isles, east of Harris. Photo: Kames.

Longer and wider

The vessel is constructed to the LUV 2208 design from Netherlands-based international shipbuilder Damen, which works in close cooperation with the Exeter yard. It is three metres longer and a metre wider than the Tiffany of Melfort.

The Tiffany II is the second LUV 2208 to have been built, with the first, the Bàta nam Bràthairean (Gaelic for Boat of the Brothers) going to Skye salmon farmer Organic Sea Harvest. A third LUV 2208 is under construction, Damen said.

Kames, which produces around 2,400 gutted weight tonnes of steelhead (sea-going rainbow trout) a year, will primarily use the Tiffany II as a harvest boat, making its operations more efficient. Since the loss of the Tiffany of Melfort, Kames has had to tow cages to harvest stations on the piers of its sites. The vessel will also help Kames’ ambition to double its annual production volume.

‘An ideal platform’

Damen describes the LUV 2208 as an ideal platform for demanding aquaculture operations.

It offers large deck space and comes equipped with a heavy crane and two capstans to handle lines and nets. The high deadweight of the vessel adds to its buoyancy while operating the crane, and a ramp at the bow offers the possibility of beaching and opening the front to load or offload large items directly from the deck.

The bottom plate and the bow ramp are constructed from extra strong steel plates to withstand beaching and landings, and fendering is very tough. Thick rubber fenders are mounted to the hull sides, to decrease impacts from other boats, quays or floating farm equipment. Damen says this mounted fendering offers better protection than the usual car tyres hanging alongside the hull.

Crew safety is improved by high bulwarks and robust stairways overboard for getting on and off smaller boats during the work around the farm.  

In addition to the vessels already built and under construction, four more LUV 2208’s are to be built, which will enable Damen to deliver from stock.