Shortly before sunrise on Friday morning, MAERSK BROOKLYN raised anchor from her temporary home off Toward and started to make her way, slowly, towards the entrance to Loch Striven.
Accompanied initially by the tugs SVITZER MILFORD and ANGLEGARTH, she passed the RFA ship FORT VICTORIA which was lying alongside at the NATO fuel jetty a little way into the loch.
As she approached the raft of five other vessels, MAERSK BROOKLYN reduced her speed as she prepared to drop anchor.
With TORCH acting in her usual supervisory role, marker buoys were secured to MAERSK BROOKLYN's anchors, to indicate their positions on the bed of the loch.
Once both anchors had been lowered to the seabed, the cables were 'walked out', lowered carefully rather than just allowed to run out under their own weight. With AYTON CROSS now also in attandance, the three tugs carefully and slowly eased her towards the other ships, where she made fast alongside. The whole operation, from lowering the anchors, to being made fast, took several hours. The arrival of MAERSK BROOKLYN completed the raft of six ships, and will ultimately mean the loss of many jobs from the company's seastaff. A press release by Maersk Line, issued last month, stated that of 560 British officers employed by the company, redundancies will be sought from around a quarter, with the anticipated loss of 113 jobs. It is likely that a similar number of ratings will also be affected by the lay-ups.
Two smaller Maersk Line ships are due on the Clyde shortly; they are to be placed into lay-up at Greenock, at least for the time being.