Andrew Jackson advises on further tug investment for SMS Towage

Andrew Jackson advises on further tug investment for SMS Towage

Andrew Jackson Solicitors has advised SMS Towage on the acquisition of the Lloydsman tugboat, as the marine firm continues its expansion into ports in Northeast England.

Rebecca Forder, a member of the firm’s shipping and transport team, led the legal team advising SMS on its purchase from Latvian towage firm PKL Flote of the Lloydsman, sister ship to the already owned Pullman, both of which were built at the Sanmar Shipyard in Turkey.

Delivering engine power of 3,000kw, the purchase of Lloydsman takes SMS Towage’s total fleet to 20, which covers the ports of Belfast, South Wales, Portsmouth, the Humber and the Northeast ports, from Blyth to the River Tees. 

Paul Escreet, chairman of SMS Towage, commented: “Tugs play a vital role in helping vessels manoeuvre and berth safely at the ports and jetties at all UK ports. This further investment in our fleet means we can better serve our ever-growing customer base at these strategic ports, thereby strengthening the services we provide to our clients.”

Commenting on the complexity of the acquisition, Escreet continued: “There were numerous hurdles to overcome with the purchase of Lloydsman. Ordinarily the vessel would need to enter dry dock to be surveyed before being accepted on the UK Flag. However, dry dock facilities were unavailable in Latvia, but following negotiations with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), it was agreed that the survey could be undertaken when the tug arrived in the UK, which avoided time consuming and expensive delays.”

“We continue to be delighted with the advice and help we receive from Andrew Jackson’s shipping and transport team,” he added.

Dominic Ward, senior partner and head of the shipping and transport team at Andrew Jackson, said: “Having worked with SMS Towage for over 20 years, we are particularly delighted to have been able to secure the vessel’s smooth transition into the UK, as the company continues with their successful fleet expansion and growth into the North East of England.”

Pictured: Simon Clarke, director at SMS Towage, with Dominic Ward
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Mark Dugdale

Mark is the Editor of Yorkshire Legal. Mark welcomes articles, letters or feedback from readers and can be reached by emailing mark.dugdale@barkerbrooks.co.uk