EXETER. There is great excitement this week for British Antarctic Survey and the RRS Sir David Attenborough as Captain Will Whatley and Chief Engineer Luke Parnell put the cargo tender for the new polar research ship through its paces.
Launched on the Exeter Ship Canal the 22-tonne Terror successfully completed her maiden voyage and will now undergo a series of technical and engineering tests to check sea-worthiness, stability and crane operations.
The cargo tender will play a critical role on board the RRS Sir David Attenborough which, in addition to its scientific role, will support the resupply of the five Antarctic research stations operated by British Antarctic Survey. Terror will transfer food, fuel and science equipment to any locations where the water is too shallow for the new polar ship to approach.
Terror will join the RRS Sir David Attenborough, and the workboat Erebus, at Cammell Laird’s Birkenhead shipyard ahead of more extensive sea trials.
In a nod to the history of UK polar exploration, Terror and Erebus are named after the ships from Sir John Franklin’s fateful exploration of the Northwest Passage – the sea route linking Europe and Asia through the Canadian Arctic – in 1845.
The original HMS Terror was built in 1813 in Topsham; as the cargo tender transited the Exeter ship canal, she passed the yard that built her namesake.