A&P provide a wide range of quality engineering services as well as ship repair projects at the largest private ship repair complex in the UK.
14 | Jun | 2018
A&P is one of the largest employers in the marine sector in Cornwall, with 230 full time employees as well as over 100 additional staff.
The Group operates from three shipyard bases in the UK in Newcastle, Tyne and Falmouth. In Falmouth, the site includes three large dry docks, workshops, seven wharves and extensive alongside deep-water berthing, providing capacity for vessels up to 100,000 tonnes. This makes it the largest private ship repair complex in the UK.
Drystan Jones, Port Operations Director, says: “Falmouth is one of the most strategically important ports in the UK, at the head of the South Western approaches and with the natural advantage of safe anchorage in the estuary. As a business, we have been able to build on the opportunities presented by our location, maximising the many opportunities to develop a thriving marinetech business.”
A&P has the capability to handle a broad range of projects, as Drystan explains: “On the port side of the business, we support a diverse stream of ship repair projects. We are particularly well suited to jack up operations, including mobilisations for changes to blade racks and modifications. We offer servicing 24 hours around the clock to a wide range of customers, including the Ministry of Defence, ferry companies, dredging companies, and bulk carriers. Around a hundred vessels come through the port each year. In addition, A&P Group has an engineering team who travel all over the globe, servicing UK Navy ships.
“A&P has been providing quality engineering services to the marine industry for over 155 years and has built up a highly skilled workforce over the last few decades. The company’s vision is to continue to build the core business supporting the global shipping and maritime, oil and gas industries, while continuing to diversify further into the civil defence, nuclear and renewable energy sectors, as well as exciting emerging areas such as autonomous vessels.”
Drystan continues: “We have an outstanding depth of expertise in production engineering. This means we make ideal partners for marine designers and developers, as we can provide the practical know-how to enable cost-effective, efficient assembly and construction.
“We are also heavily involved in the renewables sector and work with wave, tidal and offshore floating wind developers. The company is involved in various funded projects working collaboratively with major renewable companies throughout the sector. We aim to push the boundaries on development and manufacturing techniques to deliver lower costs, saving the customer on both price and time whilst maintaining top quality.
Innovation and collaboration
“Our constant drive to work with developers in this sector has led us to construct two innovative prototype wave energy devices in the last few years.”
Collaboration plays an important part in A&P’s work: “We work closely with industry and academia, together with the specialist renewable organisations that are part of Marine Hub Cornwall, such as Marine Offshore Renewables and the FabTest and WaveHub test sites.
“We also work closely with other locally based international businesses such as Fugro and we benefit greatly from the fantastic maritime supply chain in Cornwall and from the large marine skills base here. There are 3,000 people working in the marine sector in Falmouth alone.
“At A&P, we are always looking to innovate, as well as constantly improve all our current services and processes. A comparatively recent business development is our fast-growing company Marine Designs Ltd, which specialises in pontoon systems. An exciting recent project has been the construction of a crew transfer pontoon, built in Cornwall and delivered to an offshore wind farm in Barrow-in-Furness. We expect this specialist business to continue to grow.
“We are also working closely with Cornwall Council and the Local Enterprise Partnership to bring about a real transformation of Falmouth Docks. We are looking forward to reshaping the docks and the port to create a facility that is totally geared up to meet the opportunities of the future, ensuring Cornwall is a world class marine hub for decades to come.”
Drystan concludes: “Another benefit of being in Cornwall is that we enjoy excellent communications. As well as good air and road links, high speed broadband means that we can take advantage of video conferencing to stay in touch with customers, saving time and money on travel. A&P also has operations in Australia, servicing Australian navy vessels and again, video-conferencing is a great way of maintaining communications. All in all, Marine Hub Cornwall is a fantastic place from which to run a marinetech business and we are pleased to be able to deliver a vital part of its infrastructure.”