This time around we visit the renewable energy sector once again and throw the spotlight on another UK-based operator, Manor Renewable Energy (MRE), which was formed in early 2014. MRE has since become recognised for its knowledge and expertise in delivering temporary power and engineering solutions across the offshore renewables industry. In 2016, following multiple successful projects across Europe, MRE commissioned the build of their first vessel, the 159gt/2017-built Manor Venture, constructed by the well-established Manor Marine Shipyard in Portland, Dorset. In 2017, MRE acquired the 6,000m2 Manor Marine Shipyard in Portland, Dorset, which became the company headquarters, allowing MRE to provide a full engineering capability from design to fabrication, a service that elevated the company potential within the offshore wind sector. Between 2019 and 2020, MRE added 3 further new vessels to the fleet; two 21m CTVs (the 103gt/2021-built Manor Enterprise/Manor Initiative) which underwent refits at Manor Marine, and one 26m new build vessel, the 103gt/2021-built Manor Endurance, built at Manor Marine and launched in summer 2020.

On 4th August 2020 it was announced that the growing company of Manor Renewable Energy had signed a contract with Yunneng Wind Power Co. Ltd., its first contract in Taiwan, for the provision of temporary power during the turbine construction phase of the Yunlin Offshore Wind Farm. Yunneng Wind Power Co. Ltd. was the project company of the offshore wind farm belonging to German developer WPG AG. Located around 8 km off the west coast of Taiwan, the project comprised of 80 Siemens Gamesa SG 8.0-167 DD offshore wind turbines, giving a total capacity of 640 MW; when completed, Yunlin will be one of the biggest wind farms in Taiwan and provide clean electricity to more than 450,000 homes.

On 26th January 2022 global offshore services business OEG Offshore considerably broadened its renewables capability by acquiring Manor Renewable Energy, which boasted a group turnover in the region of £30 million at the time. The transaction advanced OEG’s fast-paced strategy to deliver integrated offshore service packages across the world. Bringing Manor Renewables’ expertise, reputation and track record into the OEG fold instantly enhanced its business offering, following on from the purchases in 2021 of offshore welfare leaders Pegasus Welfare Solutions, offshore radio‐communications specialists Fern Communications and Hughes Subsea Services. For MRE, joining the OEG group supported its plans to grow to a £60 million turnover business after 9 years of trading. By now, MRE had established bases in Portland, Portsmouth, Glasgow and Hull. All 230 MRE workers remained with the group. Just 9 months later, MRE announced the acquisition of OPUS Marine, a German CTV owner and operator, which was established in 2006 and had become a leading crew transfer vessel (CTV) operator to the offshore wind industry, with its fleet of CTVs in Germany and Taiwan. MRE’s fleet consequently doubled from 8 to 16 CTVs, the majority of which are certified for 24 passengers. Seven of the aforementioned vessels had been delivered since 2020, with two further high specification Chartwell Ambitious Class hybrid design vessels and one 20m multi-purpose workboat under construction at Manor Marine’s shipyard in Portland.

Fleet Investment

On 29th June 2022 MRE announced that it had placed an order with Strategic Marine of Singapore for two new additions to the company’s growing offshore support fleet, and it is these that feature as a joint newbuild of the month. The vessels would support MRE’s offshore operations in the UK, Europe and Asia. The two 302gt/2022-built vessels, destined to be named Manor Victor and Manor Vulcan, were both BMT designed 27m long aluminium catamarans.

MRE’s shipyard in Portland was already full with newbuilds for MRE, hence the decision to outsource the order to another company. The Strategic Marine shipyard has its roots in Geraldton, Western Australia where it was established in 1984 under the name of Geraldton Boat builders. The present name came about after a relocation to Singapore in 1997. The crew boat market was entered into in 2001 and the shipyard at Tuas opened in 2003. Acquired by Triyards Holdings Ltd., the company relocated in 2016 but in 2019 Strategic Marine (S) Pte Ltd. and Triyards Strategic Marine Australia Pty Ltd. were acquired by Vanguard Investment Holding Pte Ltd. Triyards Strategic Marine Australia Pty Ltd. was subsequently renamed as Strategic Marine Australia Pty Ltd. by its new shareholders.

Strategic Marine in Singapore relocated to a larger shipbuilding facility in 2022. The new sister vessels take their names from the famous strategic aircraft that played a key part in the UK’s airborne nuclear deterrent and are also future-proofed in terms of engine and propulsion design so that they can be made Hybrid compliant if a client requests it.


The ‘Vulcan and ‘Victor were ordered in March 2022 but the transaction was announced 3 months later, suggesting that the craft were being constructed speculatively by the Builder (not uncommon in the world of working vessels) so an impressive delivery lead time of around 2 months was achieved. The keels for the craft are recorded as being laid in November 2020 during the period of disruption at the hands of the pandemic. This CTV order represented the first two StratCat 27 (SC27) Crew Transfer Vessels (CTVs) sold to Manor Renewable Energy by Strategic Marine with the design first being made available in May 2021. The SC27 has a hull design that maximises waterline length, thereby improving its operational efficiency across a wide range of loading conditions and reducing emissions and fuel consumption. It is designed for flexibility, can be fitted with various makes of engine and is capable of reaching in excess of 30 knots at full speed. The profile of the StratCat 27 resembles a traditional style of CTV with adequate space allocated to the conveyance of both wind turbine technicians and cargo.

The twin-hulled SC27s are 27.50m long overall with a beam of 8.90m and a maximum draught of 1.66m. Below decks forward within the hulls is the crew accommodation consisting of one single cabin and four double cabins. Following the global pandemic, the SC27 and its interiors were designed to reduce the risk of infectious disease and its impact on the environment, meeting the relevant Classification Society biosafety and environmentally friendly notations, including the Green Passport for ship recycling. Situated aft in the hulls are the machinery spaces, each containing a Caterpillar C32 1,081 kW/1,463hp @ 2,300rpm diesel engine. These units each drive a 1.20m diameter fixed-pitch propeller that produce a service speed of 24 knots and maximum speed of 26 knots @ 100% MCR with a deadweight of 10 tonnes. Fuel consumption for each craft under this load is 581 litres per hour, the fuel capacity is 35,000 litres and the maximum range is 1,600 nautical miles. When berthing at wind turbine pylons, the craft can produce a bollard push of 12.80 tonnes. The docking area is located in the bow and personnel can safely transfer to/from wind turbine facilities in wave heights of over 1.75m.

A dynamic positioning system also ensures optimum safety during crew transfers. The Caterpillar C32 is a four-stroke V12 diesel engine that has been manufactured by Caterpillar Inc. since 2006. The engine displacement is 32.1 litres, the cylinder size is 145mm with a 162mm piston stroke. The C32 is one of the most power-dense high-speed diesel engines from the company and can produce up to 2,000 horsepower at 2,300 rpm. Each C32 engine weighs over 3t and has a 32,100m3 displacement. Strategic Marine also struck a deal with authorised Caterpillar dealer PT Trakindo Utama for 50 units of the C32 engine to ensure a steady engine supply and improved delivery times amid what is/was a global supply chain issue. This design of CTV is offered with two superstructure options for either 24 or 12 technicians. The larger asymmetric version offers a 30% area increase in the main deck cabin compared with Strategic Marine’s StratCat 26. The passenger accommodation on the main deck consists of 4 rows of 3 seats (12) on either side with lockers, a changing room and a Tech Lounge sited at the front of the passenger area. Aft of this area is a crew lounge and refreshments area. Although only a crew of 3 is required, the live-aboard accommodation is for a maximum of 9 persons. Above the main deck is the bridge deck, the layout of which has been enhanced to give improved visibility from the helm and an ergonomic layout to increase comfort for the 3 members of bridge crew. Using real life feedback from vessel operators and customers, the internal arrangements throughout the technician/crew areas were optimised for improved comfort and workflow, with ample storage space, comfortable sleeping areas and business class seating. The cargo areas aboard are situated on the stern and on the bow. The smaller area is the aft deck space, which is 29.30m2 whilst the forward deck space is 52.40m2.

The payload capacity overall is 39 tonnes and the deck load capacity for each location is 2 tonnes/m2. The forward freight deck is equipped with a Palfinger PK 12000 deck crane that has a maximum lift capacity of 6,790kg, a maximum outreach of 14.60m and has a deadweight of 1,380kg. At an outreach of 4.5m and 6.1m the lifting capacity is 2,590kg/1,910kg respectively.


Following completion and sea trials, the Manor Vulcan and Manor Victor StratCat 27s were announced as delivered to Manor Renewable Energy at Strategic Marine’s facility in Singapore on 28th September 2022. A piggyback ocean voyage then awaited each craft with the Manor Victor arriving in the UK on 26th October 2022, a little after the Manor Vulcan. At the time of writing, the two newbuilds were operating from Lowestoft/Great Yarmouth (Manor Vulcan) and Emden/Cuxhaven (Manor Victor).




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