NorthLink Ferries to Orkney and Shetland

MV Hamnavoe to move to Rosyth for repairs

MV Hamnavoe will today (1 May 2013) leave Stromness to begin repairs at Babcock Rosyth.

The MV Hamnavoe will depart Stromness this afternoon and sail south to move to Rosyth.   The vessel will move under its own power, using its remaining engine.  We expect a replacement crankshaft will be dispatched to Rosyth from Germany tomorrow (2 May) in order for the engine repair to be effected.

Serco NorthLink Ferries, with assistance from CMAL, is continuing with efforts to locate a replacement vessel.  Contact is also being made with industry counterparts in Norway, Sweden and the Republic of Ireland to establish if suitable vessels are available for use.

Stuart Garrett, managing director at Serco NorthLink Ferries, said:  “We are pleased that we have managed to secure a suitable location to repair the MV Hamnavoe at short notice.  We are disappointed and again apologise that we have had to withdraw the ferry from service, however this was an unforeseen and unpreventable technical failure.

“We look forward to the return of the MV Hamnavoe which we are working towards having back in service by Friday 24th May at the latest.

“It is important to stress that despite our ferry being unavailable that Orkney is very much open to business and tourists.  There are a number of alternative ways to get to Orkney, including our service from Aberdeen to Kirkwall, Pentland Ferries from Gills Bay to St Margaret’s Hope, the John O’Groats ferry from Burwick to John O Groats and flights with Flybe to a range of Scottish and other UK destinations.

“Serco NorthLink Ferries is working with other transport operators to help passengers with alternative travel arrangements.  We are providing courtesy travel between our ferry operations and those of Pentland Ferries.

“We are communicating directly with all passengers holding a booking during this period.  We are contacting passengers as quickly as possible, starting with those with bookings in the immediate future.  Passengers can also call NorthLink Ferries on 0845 6000449 if they require further information.”

Travel advice to passengers is as follows:

  • Passengers who have not yet been contacted and holding bookings between now and 24th May should call NorthLink Ferries on 0845 6000449
  • Pentland Ferries will put on additional sailings and will sail four times per day in each direction between the mainland (Gills Bay) and Orkney (St Margaret’s Hope) on Friday 3rd  and Saturday 4th May.  They normally operate three return sailings a day.  Tickets and timetables can be booked here:
  • NorthLink Ferries will provide courtesy travel for passengers between Stromness and Pentland Ferries at St Margaret’s Hope and from Gills Bay to Scrabster with a drop-off in Thurso.
  • Alternative transport to the mainland is also possible via NorthLink’s timetabled service between Kirkwall and Aberdeen.
  • The John O’Groats  – Burwick ferry can be booked here:
  • NorthLink Ferries will help passengers to book alternative options and welcome them to their offices in Scrabster, Stromness, and at Kiln Corner in Kirkwall where staff can assist with bookings.
  •  Further information on sailings will be announced as it comes available
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