This news just in – as part of an effort to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels, improve the welfare of their workforce, and assist a thriving local pastime, Falmouth Pilot Co. have announced they are to start using traditional pilot gigs once more as part of their pilotage service for the many commercial vessels that visit Falmouth harbour for bunkering, crew changes and repairs.
A spokesman for FPCo said : “With the multitude of pilot gig rowing clubs in our immediate area and the volume of commercial shipping we handle it makes sense to start to offer pilotage jobs to gig crews. A crew can expect to earn over £750 per run with the first gig to reach the vessel securing the job just like the ‘old days’. Given that we may service a dozen vessels each day you can see how this will become a significant revenue stream for any gig rowing crews involved.”
“Obviously there are some service limitations to using pilot gigs compared to modern all-weather transfer craft and disembarking the pilot on a bulk carrier towering over the gig is not for the faint hearted so only the best crews should contemplate this work.”
In time FPCo expects to purchase their own fleet of wooden gigs and be able to phase out the expensive diesel powered craft (shown in image).
If you have a crew in the Falmouth harbour area or are able to travel on demand to meet visiting ships (see http://www.landsendweather.info/ais) please register your interest by emailing [email protected]