MMC Diving Services

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  • Salvage of 100 tonne fishing vessel in Blackpool

    Narrow Boat Salvage in Nottingham

    During February's heavy flooding a narrowboat broke its moorings and wedged itself across the entrance of a listed bridge, causing the closure of the river for a month, MMC's team of divers undertook the recovery.


Client: Adler and Allan Environmental Response

Contractor: MMC Diving Services

Duration: 3 weeks

Date posted: 25-03-2020

FV COLINNE (UL 160), was one of the last trawlers remaining in Fleetwood, Blackpool, after the collapse of the fishing industry largely destroyed in the late 1960s and early 70s by the Cod Wars, a bitter dispute between Iceland and the UK overfishing rights.

As Fleetwood's trawlers mainly fished the North Atlantic for cod, the loss of the fishing grounds hit the town hard. The owner spent more than 40 years aboard the MV Colline, and was very well known locally for constantly being at sea 7 days a week in all weathers.

When times became hard and fishing was no longer a viable business, the Mv Colinne was abandoned alongside the quay in Fleetwood, where she eventually sank due to rotten planks.

MMC Diving Services were appointed by Adler and Allen to salvage the vessel. After an in water dive survey, our team lifted the stern from the propeller, rapped a series of long link chain around the hull and tightened these up using 3 tonne chain pulls.

100 tonnes of closed lift bags were then connected to the chains and air hoses connected to a surface controlled manifold. Once the vessel was afloat she was pumped out, various holes throughout the vessels were patched up and the airbags removed.

Director Sam Connelly said "It was an emotional job, definitely the highlight for me during this salvage was when, after she was dewatered and floating, the salvage master and myself went onboard the bridge. Rumours from the local fisherman who worked on the vessel spread of some items belonging to the owner that they thought he would love to get back for sentimental reasons. It was said that they were hidden behind the ships clock on the bulkhead.

Upon opening the clock up, a wet bible fell out that his wife had given him when they met to keep him safe at sea, along with x2 small medals and a Saint Christopher. These were all passed back to him the same day, the romance of this story was that the 5th of February was his wedding anniversary, it was the same date his mother passed away and the same date the vessel was raised and these items were returned, he was inconsolable with tears joy".

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