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Mr. Reddy's Speech

Mr. Reddy's Speech and a Brief History 



Mr. Reddy's Speech (Click here for PDF)

Marystown has a long history of shipbuilding and service rooted in the 1800's, though the town was known simply as Mortier Bay until 1909. The town is situated on a wide harbour, Mortier Bay, which is considered to be one of the largest ice-free harbours in eastern North America. Marystown was attractive to early settlers because of this ideal harbour, nearness to the fishing grounds, good farmland and availability of timber for ship construction. Among the first vessels built in Marystown were 20 - 30 ton fishing schooners during the 1840's. During World War II, the first and only warships built in Newfoundland were completed in Marystown. The Commission of Government ordered for Minesweepers be built to serve in the British Fleet. The vessels were constructed at the future site of the Marystown Shipyard. Mortier Bay also served a strategic role during the war, and was the site selected to evacuate the Royal Family and regroup the British Navy in the event of German invasion of Britain. In 1967, Marystown Shipyard facility opened for business. The Shipyard has constructed a variety of vessels including fishing trawlers, harbour tugs, car ferries, anchor handling tugs, dive support ships and offshore supply vessels.

In 1982, Mortier Bay was a safe haven for several offshore drilling rigs, evacuated from the Grand Banks after the Ocean Ranger disaster. Mortier Bay was also homeport for rescue and recovery vessels involved in the aftermath.

Currently the Shipyard and Cow Head facility, a state-of-the-art offshore fabrication site, are owned and operated by Kiewit Offshore Services. more...