P&O Ferries announced in mid January 2017 that it will send a total of four ships from its North Sea and Short Sea fleets to the Remontowa shipyard in Gdansk, Poland this season for major upgrades and refit work.
The ferry and logistics company has agreed contracts worth £14 million in total with the yard and other subcontractors, including Kent-based Hartman Marine Services Ltd for work on the engines, Derby-based Landmark Flooring and Manchester-based WDC Creative for the design of the on-board restaurants.
The 32,000-ton sister ships, the Pride of York and the Pride of Bruges, which operate on the Hull-Zeebrugge route, will sail to Remontowa for major work on their physical infrastructure and passenger areas which will guarantee their future into the 2020's. The Pride of Canterbury and Pride of Burgundy, 180 metre long vessels which can sail up to 10 times a day across the English Channel, will also travel to the Baltic during this quarter for major life extension work.
P&O Ferries services on both routes will run as normal for the duration of the re-fit season as replacement ships have been brought in as cover.
John Garner, Fleet Director at P&O Ferries, said: "We looked at a number of shipyards across Europe for this vitally important work - which will guarantee the future of all four ships into the next decade - and settled on Remontowa for its track record of delivering first class re-fits and the economies of scale generated by taking the ships to the one yard."
"In order to reduce the time that the ships are out of service to an absolute minimum, subcontractors will begin work preparing the car decks and passenger areas as soon as they begin the two day journey to Gdansk. At the yard itself, the ships will benefit from work to strengthen their steel infrastructure, machinery upgrades to the main engines and generators, and blast and paint work to the hulls."
Dawid Piaskowski, Commercial Area Director at Remontowa, said: "Good planning is the foundation of a successful project and we hope that these four ferries are the beginning of a long-term co-operation."