Vessel 801 and 802 crews: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Information requested

As you will be aware, since February 2022 CalMac has recruited 14 members of crew to support vessel 801 at Ferguson Shipyard. CalMac has confirmed that the crew salary is funded by the shipyard until vessel 801 is handed over to CalMac. With that in mind, please provided the following:

  1. Please confirm when CalMac made Transport Scotland aware of their recruitment of crew staff for vessel 801?
  2. Please confirm if Transport Scotland authorised Ferguson Shipyard’s payment of the crew’s salary and, if so, when this authorisation was confirmed?
  3. Given the further construction delays to vessels 801 and 802 (most recently announced in March 2023), please confirm if Ferguson Shipyard can recoup the funding used to pay crew salaries given the ships are still unable to be deployed? If yes, please confirm if Ferguson Shipyard has requested the retrieval of these costs and which organisation this request has been made to?
  4. Please confirm if CalMac have made Transport Scotland aware when it plans to recruit crew for vessel 802 at Ferguson Shipyard? If so, please provide the details of when staff are likely to be recruited, when they are expected to begin employment and how many staff will be employed?


CalMac received approval to appoint from Transport Scotland on the 29 September 2021 and proceeded internally to recruit for the relevant rostered positions of Master, Chief Engineer, 2nd & 3rd Engineer.

February 2022 was when crew were anticipated to be in attendance at the Ferguson Marine (Port Glasgow) shipyard based on the 25 July 2022 delivery date, this falls in line with the then scheduled approval to appoint date above. Further delays to the vessel regrettably stopped crew attending in February until June 2022. Phased employment of key crew members well in advance of delivery is a normal process for all new vessel to align with the vessel delivery schedules and commissioning requirements.

The crew, who have been deployed to the yard, and will further be employed as the vessels near completion are paid for by the Scottish Government, (yard owners), as part of the build costs of the vessels. CalMac will become responsible for the costs of the staff once the vessels are delivered.

Based on the current vessel delivery date for Hull 802 of summer 2024, CalMac would look to begin the process to recruit senior ranks in August 2023 so that they are in place at the yard 6 months in advance of vessel delivery, with remaining ranks following over the months thereafter.

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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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