Harland & Wolff has acquired the former HMS Atherstone from the Ministry of Defence (MOD).

The former HMS Atherstone is a mine hunting class vessel that is no longer in Service. Harland & Wolff has acquired this vessel with a view to refurbishing it for non-military uses, discussions for which have already commenced with interested parties.

Harland & Wolff is involved in a competition run by the MOD regeneration programme for the former HMS Quorn (M55). It believes that the acquisition of the former HMS Atherstone will significantly de-risk the M55 regeneration programme given that the two vessels share a number of spare parts and components. Should Harland & Wolff be awarded the regeneration programme for the M55, such spare parts and components on the HMS Atherstone will be utilised during the regeneration programme of the M55. It expects negotiations with the MOD on the M55 regeneration programme to be completed in the next few weeks with an announcement to be made thereafter, should an award be made in Harland & Wolff’s favour.

Harland & Wolff, group CEO John Wood, commented:

“I am delighted that we have acquired the former HMS Atherstone.

“The benefits of this acquisition are two-fold; we now can significantly de-risk the M55 regeneration programme by utilising spares and component parts common to the two vessels, which has been recognised by MOD and will certainly help in closing out the negotiations over the next few weeks.

“Secondly, we also can utilise this platform as the basis for other clients’ projects, which will be a valuable revenue stream for 2023.

“I am pleased that we have generated a lot of interest for the repurposing of the former HMS Atherstone, and I expect to make announcements in this regard as soon as we have executed a refurbishment contract with a counterparty.”