We use cookies to make your experience of our website better. To comply with EU regulations we need to ask for your consent to set these cookies. I agree |  No thanks |  Find out more

Skip navigation

26 Aug - Personnel Transfer at the Alwyn Field

RRS Ernest Shackleton Diary


Position at 1200: At Alwyn field for transfer of crew.
Conditions: Wind W'ly x 15 kts; Barometer 1015.0 mb Falling; Cloudy, fine and clear, slight sea, low swell.

Asset Map


Firstly, may I apologise for the poor quality of the web page this week. This is because one of the experts Steve Buxton, is leaving the ship to begin a four month GMDSS* maintenance course, and the other, Michael Goldstein, is still on leave. I am Vince Jones, relief Radio Officer for the next five weeks, I hope to improve during this time - thanks!

(*We think this stands for "Global Maritime Distress and Safety System" - Editor)

Tuesday: Short notice, two hours, to proceed to Stavanger, Norway. Departed at 1630 hrs not knowing for certain what the new job would be

Wednesday: Arrived Stavanger 1730 hrs and commenced to load seismic survey equipment for a vertical seismic survey to be carried out at the Sleipner Oil Field.
A night in beautiful Stavanger was appreciated by all the crew though there were some complaints of beer at approx £4 a pot!!

Thursday: We continued to load equipment until 1430 hrs then departed Stavanger for the Sleipner field.

Lowering the gun into the 
water. Click to enlargeFriday: Arrival Sleipner at 0700 hrs, transfer of seismic equipment to the platform started immediately. Early afternoon a nitrogen gun array was lowered into the water suspended under a buoy by the crane. The gun array was fired at regular intervals for the next 24 hours. It was very loud and shook the ship due to it's close proximity!


Saturday:The survey was completed at the early hour of 0700. The equipment was transferred from the platform and loaded onboard and we departed the Sleipner field for Stavanger and looked forward to a good nights sleep. Arrived late afternoon at Stavanger. Discharged seismic survey equipment and then took on board 40 oil field workers for transfer to the Alwyn Field. This was due to thick fog at the Alwyn Field preventing transfer by helicopter. Departed Stavanger at 2030 hrs on passage to Alwyn Field. Slept!

Sunday: Arrival Alwyn 1300 and transfer of 50 personnel to and from the rigs and platform  by a "frog" basket and crane began. 40 to rigs and platform and 10 to the ship for passage to Aberdeen. E.T.A. Aberdeen the afternoon of August 27.

The following photographs show the stages of the transfer:

Stage 1:Sit In

Stage 2:Up and Away!

Getting into the basket. 
Click to enlarge Up and away! 
Click to enlarge

Stage 3:About to land

About to land. 
Click to enlarge

Stage 4:Just in case something goes wrong!


Stage 5:Have we left someone behind?

Just in case something goes wrong! 
Click to enlarge Anyone left behind? 
Click to enlarge


Finally, could I introduce Mr Mark Taylor, Able Seaman and crew member from Newcastle. Here is Mark halfway through his breakfast! Although he can manage lunch, dinner , supper and snacks as well ,he remains as thin as a rake! How does he do it !?

Mark at breakfast. 
Click to enlarge


And lets not forget the production line, Mr Simon Hadgraft from Fleetwood our second Chef.

Second Chef, Simon Hadgraft. 
Click to enlarge



North Sea Diary 16 will be written on Sunday September 02 and should be published on Monday September 03.

Vince J