Unexpected Royal visit for Broch boat

VISIT: HRH Princess Anne inspects the Orlik with John Watt, MD of Macduff Shipbuilding.
VISIT: HRH Princess Anne inspects the Orlik with John Watt, MD of Macduff Shipbuilding.

Her Royal Highness Princess Anne made a surprise visit to Councillor Michael Watt’s recently renovated fishing vessel last week, inspecting how work was progressing on the environmentally friendly venture.

Councillor Watt has been at work for the past two years, getting an old fishing boat, which would have otherwise been scrapped, up to scratch as a cruise vessel.

Recently, he has promoted the fact that his new vessel, the Orlik, will be as environmentally-friendly as possible, having been fitted with both solar panels and a wind turbine.

The Orlik is the first vessel in the area to have been fitted with such features, something that the local owner believes highlights that Fraserburgh is the leading light for pioneering green, clean technologies.

Princess Anne inspected the vessel and its solar panels during a tour of Macduff shipyard, deciding that she wanted a closer look at the converted commercial trawler.

The 60-year-old Orlik will hopefully capitalise on the tourism market of the North-east, something that Cllr Watt has said is a missed opportunity in the market.

He is hopeful of a berth in Fraserburgh for his new business venture, but, in the meantime, with no such place available for the Orlik in the Broch, it will take up port at Banff.