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Merseyside Shipyard Workers at Cammell Laird Vote to Strike

21st November 2023
A shipyard on Merseyside is where workers at Cammell Laird, Birkenhead, have voted to strike in a row over pay and conditions.
A shipyard on Merseyside is where workers at Cammell Laird, Birkenhead, have voted to strike in a row over pay and conditions. Credit: Cammell Laird-flickr

Workers at a Merseyside shipyard which built the UK polar research ship, RRS Sir David Attenborough, have voted to strike in a row over pay and conditions.

Electricians, pipe-fitters and welders and others at Cammell Laird shipyard on Birkenhead, are building submarines and ships for the UK’s Royal Navy.

Of those workers which voted to walk-out, this was around 96%, which represents 75% of the more than 400 union members of the unions, Unite and the GMB which are taking part in the ballot.

More on the story from the Independent.

A recent caller to one of the shipyard’s dry-docks, as Afloat previously reported, was the newly introduced UK-Channel Islands ropax Conder Islander which went for repairs. The ferry has returned to Conder Ferries service and at time of writing is sailing from St. Helier, Jersey to Portsmouth.

It is from the English Channel port where the RRS Sir David Attenborough last month departed on its first Antarctica science mission to study the impact of environmental changes on ecosystems and sea ice.

Published in Shipyards
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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Afloat will be focusing on news and developments of shipyards with newbuilds taking shape on either slipways and building halls.

The common practice of shipbuilding using modular construction, requires several yards make specific block sections that are towed to a single designated yard and joined together to complete the ship before been launched or floated out.

In addition, outfitting quays is where internal work on electrical and passenger facilities is installed (or upgraded if the ship is already in service). This work may involve newbuilds towed to another specialist yard, before the newbuild is completed as a new ship or of the same class, designed from the shipyard 'in-house' or from a naval architect consultancy. Shipyards also carry out repair and maintenance, overhaul, refit, survey, and conversion, for example, the addition or removal of cabins within a superstructure. All this requires ships to enter graving /dry-docks or floating drydocks, to enable access to the entire vessel out of the water.

Asides from shipbuilding, marine engineering projects such as offshore installations take place and others have diversified in the construction of offshore renewable projects, from wind-turbines and related tower structures. When ships are decommissioned and need to be disposed of, some yards have recycling facilities to segregate materials, though other vessels are run ashore, i.e. 'beached' and broken up there on site. The scrapped metal can be sold and made into other items.