Arrival of Acamar

DSC00252Our Marine Department celebrated a significant milestone in September 2018 with the arrival of our new tug boat, named Acamar. We caught up with James Gray, Assistant Harbour Master/Marine Works to find out about this new addition to the fleet and how it’s enhancing the services we offer.

Origins of Acamar

DSC00306Following high demand for our seabed levelling services, we decided to invest in the aptly named Acamar last year. Acamar derives from the Arabic phrase meaning ‘end of the river’ and has been working alongside our existing tug Adurni, which is the Roman name for the River Adur.  The design was inspired by the popular ‘Sally Mcloughlin’ hull and was customised to suit our busy operational requirements. 

Building a tug boat

New Tug (1)The build process began in August 2017 and was completed over the course of one year by Macduff Ship Design at their shipyard near Banff in Scotland.

The company specialises in providing bespoke vessels and Acamar was carefully tailored to meet our requirements for a 16 metre, category 3 general-purpose built harbour tug. Acamar is constructed entirely from steel to a hard-chine hullform with a box skeg and Kort Propulsion.

We are pleased to report the new tug has improved stability, a bigger crane and additional spaces due to its ergonomic design.  

DSC00841The purchase of Acamar was made possible with the help of Santander. Pictured here, Paul Rose (left), Director of Santander's South East Region and David Pearce (right), Relationship Director, with Patrick Ovens, our Finance Manager (middle) after enjoying one of the first trips on the new tug along our canal.

What is seabed levelling?

both tugs 2Acamar is mainly used for seabed levelling; a modern-day dredging technique used in many ports and harbours. The process involves towing a plough along the seabed levelling high spots and ridges, by moving the agitated material to nearby deeper areas and using the tidal stream to move the material in suspension for longer distances. Built up material can also be removed from berths and other inaccessible areas into the tidal stream or to an area where a trailer suction hopper dredger is operating. As well as dredging, the vessel’s other duties include towing, pushing, and surveying.

Acamar will continue to work alongside our older tug, Adurni over the coming year providing towage and bed levelling services where required. To enquire about our bed levelling services please click here for more information or alternatively please call +44 (0)1273 598100 or email

Key Facts - vessel specifications

  • Acamar has a 7-tonne winch for plough-dredging, a Cormach 8700 E4 marine deck crane and fire-fighting equipment.
  • Crew include LSA for 6, day crew 3 men and 2 bunks for extended deployments.
  • In the engine room, there is a pair of Doosan V158 engines providing 358 kW of power at 1,800 rpm coupled to Twin Disc gearboxes with a reduction ratio of 6.10:1 driving two 1.7-m diameter propellers with Kort nozzles.
  • Acamar has a nial bronze propeller with a diameter of 1, 700mm and a speed of 10 knots.
  • On-board capabilities include Fuel oil: 10,500 litres, Fresh water: 750 litres and Water Ballast: 3,400 litres