Catamaran ferry designer tops CRSC’s 2023-24 line-up

Pre-eminent catamaran ferry designer Stuart Ballantyne will address CRSC members on Wednesday 13 September

CRSC will host the world’s leading proponent of catamaran ferries on 13 September, in a Zoom presentation that promises insights into the latest developments in the design and deployment of twin-hulled vessels.

Stuart Ballantyne’s talk, to be given jointly with Scottish ferries guru Roy Pedersen, is part of an exciting programme organised by CRSC for the coming months, featuring prominent maritime professionals and enthusiasts.

Ferries guru Roy Pedersen

All meetings begin at the new start-time of 7pm. Non-members are welcome.

A Scot by birth and a naval architect by profession, Stuart Ballantyne will join us online from Australia, where he is chairman of the internationally renowned marine consulting firm Sea Transport Solutions.

Stuart has designed catamarans for commercial use in around 50 countries, and fronts a group of experts advocating the use of catamarans to solve Scotland’s ferry crisis.

His 13 September joint presentation with Roy Pedersen takes on added piquancy in the light of the Scottish Government’s recent charter of Pentland Ferries’ catamaran MV Alfred, currently on the Ardrossan-Brodick service. Some of his comments may stir controversy, given the Scottish transport establishment’s well-known antipathy to catamaran procurement.

Dalmadan founder Graham Lappin

This will be the second of CRSC’s late summer Zoom meetings. For the first, on Wednesday 9 August at 7pm, we are delighted to welcome Graham Lappin, creator of the highly regarded Dalmadan website, who will show (and speak about) artefacts and photos from his renowned collection of Clyde memorabilia. A native of Dunbartonshire and longstanding Club member, Graham is Professor Emeritus at the University of Notre Dame in the US state of Indiana.

On October 11 we will have the first of our face-to-face winter meetings at a new Glasgow city centre venue — the Maldron Hotel at 50 Renfrew Street (top of Renfield Street, easily walkable from Central and Queen Street railway stations and Buchanan Street bus station — see map below). The hotel’s front door is a few steps from bus routes up and down Hope Street and Renfield Street.

Maldron Hotel, the well-equipped and easy-to-find new venue for our monthly meetings in Glasgow city centre

This brand new four-star hotel marks a notable improvement on our previous premises, with a first-floor meeting room big enough for all our requirements, including socialising and the sale of photographs and other goodies.

The speaker on Wednesday 11 October is none other than Eric Schofield, until recently our honorary secretary, who promises an evening of nostalgia as he traces the history of ferryboats tendering between ship and shore on Scotland’s western seaboard.

On Wednesday 8 November we are all invited to observe (and respond to) a live demonstration of maritime art courtesy of professional artist Martyn Mackrill, whose paintings of yachts and steamers are much in demand in London galleries.

On Wednesday 13 December we welcome Club member Robert Stanley for an illustrated presentation titled ‘My World of Ferries’, drawing on his extensive experience of ferries serving the south of England, Northern Ireland and the Clyde.

Our annual Members Night takes place on Wednesday 10 January 2024: we can look forward to another wide range of personal enthusiasms, courtesy of Jonathan Cohen, Paul Flint and Jane Liston.

The presentation by former CalMac chief engineer Alex Forrest on Wednesday 14 February will be ‘live’ only (no Zoom, no video), and will focus on MV Loch Frisa, the former Norwegian ferry which he helped to convert for UK waters at Leith docks early in 2021.

On Wednesday 13 March it will be Lawrence Macduff who steps forward to give a 40th birthday tribute to MV Isle of Arran, a ferry whose stalwart qualities have won the hearts of so many enthusiasts in recent years.

Please come early to all these meetings (online and face-to-face) so that we can chat, make new friendships (or renew old ones) and peruse the CRSC Shop. Zoom coordinates will be advertised on this website in due course.

Maldron Hotel, an unmistakable 12-storey building at the intersection between Renfrew Street and Renfield Street, is on city centre bus routes and a short walk from Central and Queen Street railway stations and Buchanan Street bus station. Directions can be found using the map above.

Summary of CRSC line-up 2023-24 (all at 7pm)

Our meetings on the first floor of the Maldron Hotel will take place in the comfortable Newbery and Dean Suites (above), which can be partitioned according to demand. There is ample room at the back for the Club Shop (postcards, memorabilia etc). The room is sound-proofed against outside noise

August 9  Delving into our Past: Photographs and Other Memorabilia of the Clyde — Graham Lappin (Zoom meeting, plus ‘Members Only’ website video)

September 13  Ferry Alternatives: Improving Scotland’s ferry networks by emulating international best practice — Stuart Ballantyne and Roy Pedersen (Zoom meeting, plus ‘Members Only’ website video)

October 11  From Ship to Shore — Eric Schofield (Maldron Hotel, plus ‘Members Only’ website video)

November 8  Maritime Art: Live demonstration by professional artist Martyn Mackrill (Maldron Hotel, plus website video)

December 13  My World of Ferries — Robert Stanley (Maldron Hotel, plus website video)
January 10  Members Night with Jonathan Cohen, Paul Flint and Jane Liston (Maldron Hotel, plus website video)
February 14  MV Loch Frisa and Other Ferries — Alex Forrest (Maldron Hotel only — no website video)
March 13  MV Isle Arran: a 40th birthday tribute — Lawrence Macduff (Maldron Hotel, plus website video)
April 17  Annual General Meeting (Maldron Hotel, plus website video)
October 9  First meeting of 2024-25 session (Maldron Hotel, plus website video)

Street entrance to the Maldron Hotel at the intersection of Renfrew and Renfield Streets

Ground floor foyer. There are three lifts (beyond the blackboard, right) as well as a staircase to take us to our first floor meeting room

Front row (foreground) and speaking area of our meeting room on the first floor. The room is equipped with a large screen and projector

The ‘red boats’ at Iona will be a likely topic of interest in Eric Schofield’s presentation on October 11, at our first meeting in the Maldron Hotel

How about joining CRSC? You can do so for just £15 by clicking here — and you’ll receive all the benefits, including our annual Review of west coast ship movements, a 56-page colour magazine, discounts on photo offers and access to photo-rich ‘members only’ posts. Questions? Email
Published on 12 July 2023