Alness-based Leco Marine has produced three HDPE workboats, with more planned. Photo: Leco Marine.
Alness-based Leco Marine has produced three HDPE workboats, with more planned. Photo: Leco Marine.

New workboats launched by aquaculture services firm

A new range of HDPE workboats targeted at Scottish fish farmers has been launched by a small company providing aquaculture services and vessel hire.

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David Skea, owner of Leco Marine at Alness, Ross-shire, and his colleague, boat builder Julian Bainbridge, decided to produce their own general-purpose boats after being unable to find what was needed elsewhere.

The company has made two 5-metre boats and an 8-metre vessel with an enclosed cockpit and is now starting work on a 6-metre boat. It will also build a 9-metre after the 6m version is complete.

The vessels will be marketed by a Leco sister company, North Coast Workboats.

David Skea: Hopeful of winning orders.
David Skea: Hopeful of winning orders.

Diving and net cleaning

“We are inviting all interested parties to come and view the boats in the coming weeks,” said Skea, who was a shellfish diver before taking over Leco Marine in 2014.

The company was established in 1990 to provide services to drilling rigs, which included cleaning the underside of the rig hulls, and diversified into the aquaculture industry in 2014 by offering net cleaning and diving, said Skea.

As well as four staff at the workshop at Alness, Leco Marine has a four-man dive team and a net-cleaning team on Skye, who have been primarily servicing Grieg Seafood’s five salmon farms on the island.

Grieg has closed three of the farms following a mass mortality event in the summer and will cease operations at the other two when the fish are harvested.