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Ferry to be replaced by OIC

The Golden Mariana is to be replaced.
(Craig Taylor)

ORKNEY Islands Council is set to purchase a vessel to replace the elderly ferry Golden Mariana, with a 50 per cent contribution coming from the Scottish Government.

The 48-year-old Golden Mariana usually operates between Westray and Papa Westray and, until this week, had been standing in for the ferry Graemsay, which had an engine problem that has now been fixed.

A search for a replacement vessel has been under way for many years.

Following the decision of the full council, which met on Tuesday, the council will move ahead with the purchase of a much younger vessel, which has been operating an inter-island ferry service in the Bodø region of northern Norway, above the Arctic Circle.

Like the Golden Mariana, the vessel, named Nordic Sea can carry around 40 passengers. It will require UK classification and certification and the complex process involved in this is well under way.

Futher details in The Orcadian on Thursday.

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