Ex­tra Mayo

Ir­ish work­boat sup­plier branch­ing out in Scot­land

Fish Farmer - - Boats And Boatbuildi­ng - BY DAVE EDLER

AWORKBOAT com­pany op­er­at­ing from the Ir­ish coastal town of West­port, close to the ‘gaeltacht’ area of County Mayo, has se­cured its first as­sign­ment in Scot­land at a fish farm site on the Isle of Skye. . O’Mal­ley Ma­rine Plant hopes that the work on Skye, which in­volves net wash­ing and var­i­ous other tasks, will lead to more aqua­cul­ture re­lated op­por­tu­ni­ties in the Scot­tish mar­ket.

O’Mal­ley is run by two brothers, Charles and Ger­ard O’Mal­ley, and the com­pany cur­rently has three work­boats: the MV James, the MV True Light and the MV Tor­more.

It was only es­tab­lished in 2018 and the brothers also own and op­er­ate Mal­ley Fer­ries (Clare Is­land) Lim­ited, which pro­vides year round ferry links be­tween the Ir­ish main­land and Clare Is­land and Inish­turk. The O’Mal­ley fam­ily orig­i­nate from Clare Is­land and have been sea­far­ers for many gen­er­a­tions.

The West­port com­pany has 10 em­ploy­ees but is look­ing to ex­pand. Its rep­u­ta­tion for suc­cess­fully com­plet­ing jobs on time and within bud­get has brought the firm to the at­ten­tion of sev­eral com­pa­nies work­ing in the aqua­cul­ture sec­tor.

O’Mal­ley has pre­vi­ously worked with Mowi in the Repub­lic of Ire­land but the con­tract on Skye is the first time it has op­er­ated at a fish farm site in Scot­land.

The cur­rent work­boat be­ing used has a crane, 3 ISO tanks, 1000 tonne deck cargo, and 115 square me­tre deck area, as well as a work­shop and ac­com­mo­da­tion for up to six peo­ple.

Charles O’Mal­ley said that the com­pany is very keen to build on the work be­ing done on Skye.

‘There’s no doubt about it, that af­ter get­ting our first Scot­tish as­sign­ment, we are keen to work on other sites here,’ he told Fish Farmer.

‘The work we have done with Mowi in Ire­land went very well, but we are now very open to ex­plor­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties in the Scot­tish mar­ket.

‘As well as our ex­ist­ing fleet, we have an­other small work­boat com­ing on­line in about two months’ time and so we will be able to of­fer that as well.’

O’Mal­ley takes on a wide range of jobs out­side the aqua­cul­ture sec­tor, and some of its work­boats’ other ac­tiv­i­ties have in­cluded an­chor han­dling, car­riage of rock ar­mour, dredg­ing sup­port, the trans­fer of fuel and fresh­wa­ter to other ves­sels, the trans­fer of cargo and equip­ment us­ing the ves­sels own cranes and bough load­ing ramp, and the de­ploy­ment and re­trieval of buoys.

Most re­cently, the MV James has also been work­ing in the high­lands of Scot­land, fer­ry­ing ar­tic­u­lated trucks and other ve­hi­cles be­tween the Isle of Is­lay and the Isle of Jura.

The James, a land­ing craft orig­i­nally built in Ger­many in 1953 but com­pletely re­fur­bished 10 years ago, had also been in­volved be­fore Christ­mas in as­sist­ing in the re­pairs to Dun Laoghaire Har­bour in Co Dublin, which were a re­sult of dam­age from Storm Emma in 2018.

Af­ter get­ting our first Scot­tish as­sign­ment, we are keen to work on other sites here”

Above: Ir­ish work­boat com­pany O’Mal­ley Ma­rine Plant is mov­ing into the Scot­tish aqua­cul­ture mar­ket

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