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Last Updated: Friday, 29 February 2008, 13:21 GMT
Shipyard wins new naval contract
Fort Rosalie
The ship will undergo a complete overhaul
A shipyard in Merseyside has won a multi-million pound contract with the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

Northwestern Shiprepairers and Shipbuilders - based in Birkenhead's Cammel Laird yard - is to overhaul a Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) vessel.

Work on the Fort Rosalie, which served in the Falklands, is set to cost 28m and is expected to take about 10 months to complete.

Up to 350 people will work on the renovation project.

The ship will have its crew accommodation, engines, weaponry and machinery refitted in the overhaul.

John Syvret, company managing director, said the contract - the biggest it has ever won - was a "tremendous" achievement.

It will be like brand new ship when it's finished inside and out
John Syvret, company managing director

Although the contract will create new jobs the firm does not yet have figures.

Mr Syvret said: "This is an enormous boost for the Merseyside marine engineering industry and the result of a huge amount of effort on behalf of our team.

"The deal confirms that the Mersey is now back where it belongs - as a centre of excellence for commercial ship repair conversion and military refit.

"Moreover it reflects our growing status with the MoD."

Before Christmas, the firm was awarded preferred contractor status on a number of MoD maintenance contracts worth 234m.

Gulf veteran

The 185 metre-long (607ft) ship supplies Royal Navy vessels with equipment including food, spares and ammunition.

It joined the RFA fleet in 1978 and won a battle honour for its role in the Falklands conflict.

The vessel also served in both Gulf wars.

Mr Syvret added: "The Rosalie, a veteran of the Falklands conflict, is 30-years-old and needs a complete overhaul.

"It will be like brand new ship when it's finished inside and out. It's a tremendous contract to land."

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