THE first vessel to come out of a boat-builder’s new Middlesbrough yard has officially been launched.

The Atlantic Dawn scalloper, owned by James Monaghan of Islay Crab Exports based on the Scottish Isle of Islay, enjoyed a traditional maritime naming ceremony where she was blessed by Father Michael Gobbett and named by James’ daughter Kayleigh.

She was due to undergo sea trials before starting work fishing for scallops in the English Channel until Christmas, when she will then join the rest of James’ fleet in the Irish Sea.

The vessel was built by Parkol, which was established in Whitby in 1971, opened its Middlesbrough yard in October 2017 to increase its capacity for building larger boats and satisfy the growing demand for new bespoke fishing vessels.

The Atlantic Dawn is the first project to be completed at the new fabrication facility, which boasts the capability for keel to mast construction and fit-out entirely under cover.

Sally Atkinson, Parkol director and project manager, said: “This is the first time we’ve worked with James and we were thrilled to win the order. It was a pleasure to build the Atlantic Dawn and we were really pleased to be able to complete it two-and-a-half months ahead of schedule.”

Satisfied customer James Monaghan said “Absolutely everything was A1, I couldn’t have asked for more. The workmanship was fantastic, it’s the best I’ve ever experienced. They are a family-run business and the personal touch was evident every step of the way.”

Established in 1985, Islay Crab Exports is a family-run business specialising in the supply of high quality and mainly locally caught live velvet, green, spider and brown crabs, winkles and scallop meat throughout Europe.

Mr Monaghan wanted to add a new, bigger boat to his existing fleet that would be able to cope well with the rough seas and stormy weather that can batter the Scottish islands and coastline.

He added: “Fuel efficiency is very important to us as she’s working 24/7 and landing every five or six days. She has a top speed of around 12 knots and we’re confident she will perform brilliantly at sea.”

The Middlesbrough fabrication hall measures 70 metres by 35 metres by 40m high, with four boat-building berths that can accommodate new builds up to 40 metres long and 10 metre beam.

Ms Atkinson added: “The new yard is already proving a massive asset to the business, the order book is healthy and we’re looking forward to constructing more vessels there in 2019.”

To contact the firm, email or call 01947-602669.