FIRST Minister Nicola Sturgeon and deputy John Swinney are in Inverclyde today to check on progress at Ferguson Marine in Port Glasgow.
They were due to visit the Newark shipyard which is currently undergoing a major redevelopment while staff work on a £97m Scottish Government contract to build two new ferries.
Ms Sturgeon and Mr Swinney will also meet with Greenock & Inverclyde SNP candidate for the Holyrood election, Stuart McMillan.
The First Minister visited Ferguson’s in August last year to announce that the company had won the lucrative £97m contract to build the next two vessels for Port Glasgow-based Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited as part of the government’s ferry renewal programme.
We also received a special visitor here at the Stuart McMillan campaign hub…
And lo, by the dim light of the Tail of the Bank’s grey sun, the Wizard crossed the Bridge of Er’s Kin in search of the Captain, the champion of the Clydemouth. He battled the Bampots of Braeside, the Clarty Coupons of Cappielow, and the Malkies of Midton – but the Wizard was undeterred. He faced the dread hordes of Murdo – but the Wizard was undeterred. He gazed into the terrible maw of the Great Dark Abyss – but the Wizard was undeterred!
Mr Swinney was kind enough to formally open the shop.
I’m in there somewhere…
We showed Mr Swinney around the shop, introduced him to a few people. We had cake. Some of us went out canvassing. I made him an egg.
I made him an egg.
He also met three very special ladies:
My Granny & two great aunts have been tirelessly working day-in day-out preparing leaflets, letters and envelopes through the campaign. Well, my mammy had to get her work ethic somewhere – not that my grandfather is any slouch at all (you might even see him as a featured commenter on a few websites – but which one, and under what name?)
We also have a new selection of badges designed by yours truly:
We were just about ready for a rest, when we received a delivery.
*Sigh* Back to work!
I am happy to meet the First Minister and Deputy First Minister at Ferguson Marine to show them the excellent work being done here to regenerate shipbuilding on the Clyde.
It’s great to see the First Minister back in Inverclyde again and this highlights the importance of Ferguson’s to the local area, and the importance of shipbuilding industry in Scotland.
The SNP Scottish Government responded quickly to the closure of Ferguson’s, with ministers forming a task group which met within days. We worked hard to achieve the purchase of the yard as a going concern and were delighted when Jim McColl’s bid delivered this.
The strategic vision for Ferguson Marine will turn it into a 21st century business within a year with ambitious plans for 1,300 jobs and £65 million of investment.
This is a remarkable success story for Inverclyde.
– Stuart McMillan upon the First Minister & Deputy First Minister’s progress visit to Ferguson’s