scilly ferries

Harland & Wolff (Scilly Ferries) Ltd. is a new ferry service launching in Spring 2024 operating between Penzance and St Mary’s.

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An update from John Wood

Our team has been working hard to get our service ready for summer and we are very happy to say that the Atlantic Wolff is due to start her journey to the UK from her current base in Spain in the next few days (weather conditions permitting).

The vessel we have chosen to provide our service between Penzance and St Mary’s is a Damen 4212 fast ferry formerly named Aquajet 1.  Her first port of call in the UK will be Portsmouth, where she will undergo a refit into Harland & Wolff livery and our plan is for her to join the UK Ship Register, a process we have begun with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.  We have Islands FM joining us in Portsmouth for her arrival to have the first look around.

To be fully open and transparent, there is a significant and important regulatory process to go through before she can enter service. The timescales for this process are a little out of our gift, and this will be the factor which determines when we can commence passenger crossings.

We had selected another vessel but with the conflict in the Middle East it provided impossible to get the vessel back within our timescales.  We share the ambition to get the service going as soon as possible and are pushing as hard as we can to make that happen, working closely with the regulatory authorities.

The team has done a tremendous job setting this up from scratch in the time scale that we have had to work with, but we are asking for a little bit more patience from all those that have shown an interest and supported us with a significant number of reservations.

We now expect it will be early June before the first passenger crossings commence, but we know that for a first year of service it is hugely important to ensure every detail is properly taken care of to provide the absolute best service possible.

We have a combination of things to consider in selecting the right vessel to provide the optimum service. We will continue to monitor this over our initial season and have flexible arrangements should we need to change or modify our vessel for future seasons.  With it being new, we need to commence operations and gather the data to ensure we provide an optimum service going forward.

We have not taken any payments to date, given the large number of factors outside of our gift as previously mentioned.  To all of you with reservations for May, we would like to offer our sincere apologies for any inconvenience this delay has caused. Please be assured that we will contact you directly to provide an individual update on your reservation and are currently speaking with local companies to secure alternative arrangements.

We are also exploring the options for chartering in a smaller vessel that could operate several times per day depending on conditions but appreciate that will not suit everyone.

Reinforcing our commitment to providing an excellent service, we are pleased to announce the appointment of an experienced managing director for Scilly Ferries, James Broughton, who leaves his most recent position as Penzance Harbour Master following a long and successful career at sea to join the H&W family. I look forward to welcoming James next week.

The new MD will be responsible for all aspects of the new service and introducing further additional services in the future and knows the region very well.

We have also welcomed Leepeck Media on board, a marketing agency which has a track record of working with other ferry operators. The agency is highly experienced in maritime operations and will start work this week on formally marketing our product offering and developing our partnership programme with local businesses. If you have any questions, please contact:

We are also delighted to have appointed the Western Australian company IMS as vessel managers for the Atlantic Wolff.  The team at IMS are specialists in delivering and managing high speed ferry operations across the globe. If you are interested in crewing the vessel, please e-mail them at:

Harland & Wolff (Marine Services) continues to go from strength-to-strength under the management of Julian Northway. With its fleet having grown to five freight carrying vessels, and bookings being over capacity we look forward to welcoming additional vessels in due course. Get in touch with Julian and the team to discuss your freight needs.

We are as excited and impatient as you are to get going with operations and provide a fast and innovative service which delivers economic opportunity and far greater accessibility for islanders.

We will keep you fully updated as we progress and cannot wait to see the Atlantic Wolff in her home waters, serving the people of Scilly very soon.

Thank you for all the support and encouragement we have received as we make a fast ferry a reality, I said we would make positive change and with the arrival of this vessel we move to the next stage.

With kind regards,


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