The first of a new generation of pelagic fishing vessels arrived in Shetland today, with skipper Lowrie Irvine and his crew sailing the new Antares (LK 419) across from Norway.
Built at the Simek Yard at Flekkefjord in southern Norway, she was named on 1st December and the crew took possession on Thursday.
At 75m, she is longer and wider than the previous Antares, which was sold to the Iceland seafood company Samherji in May 2015. Her 6,600kW Wartsila engine drives an advanced hull shape containing 12 RSW tanks with a combined capacity of 2,400 cubic metres.
A delighted Mr Irvine, who celebrated his 71st birthday the day after arriving home, said the new boat handled beautifully.
“We had a Force 8 coming up from the south end of Norway for a couple of hours, which was a good test, but it eased as we came across the North Sea.
“We are keen to get all our gear aboard and head out to the grounds as we have some mackerel quota and want to try everything out.”
Partners in the Antares Fishing Company, originally formed back in 1973, include skipper Lowrie Irvine, mate Graeme Sandison, Edward Anderson, George Anderson, engineer Doddie Williamson, second engineer Arthur Polson, Robert Irvine and Lawrence Irvine.
The next of the new pelagic boats to arrive in Shetland will be the Serene, for fellow Whalsay man Bobby Polson and partners in the Serene Fishing Company. She is due to be built at the Kartensens Shipyard in Skagen, Denmark, for delivery in June 2018.