Wednesday, 8 January 2020

Cable laying in Sound of Jura

Jura Power Cable

A Notice to Mariners has been issued with regards to a cable laying operation in the northern part of the Sound Of Jura.

The operations to replace the power cable from Carsaig on the mainland and Lealt Bay on Jura will take place during an appropriate weather window following the 17th January, and are expected to take seven days.

Carsaig to Lealt
Route of the Jura Power Cable, showing extent of working area.

Work Description

Cable installation will be completed by M/V Elektron, assisted by the dive support vessel Forth Warrior and support craft Celtic Trader, Celtic Voyager, Celtic Nomad and Celtic Guardian.   Cable Laying operations will be conducted on a 24 hour basis.

Other vessels should maintain an appropriate safe distance of 500m when passing the vessels whilst operational, and should pass at the lowest possible speed to avoid vessel wash effects.   Vessels will be working throughout 24 hours and will display appropriate day shapes and lights during reduced visibility and night operations.

Cable Layer
Cable laying vessel M/V Elektron

Sunday, 22 December 2019

Christmas Newsletter 2019

CHRISTMAS BANNERChristmas Newsletter 2019

As 2019 draws to a close, we would like to extend our best wishes for the holiday season and pass on our thanks for your continued custom over the past year and into the new season.

In the Marina and Chandlery Office, Lyn Murray and Neil Donaldson have been a welcome addition to the staff and we now have a settled team in place ready to welcome you to Ardfern Yacht Centre next year. We are busy completing the refurbishment of the Marina Office and look forward to showing you the new look in 2020.

It has also been a busy year for the Workshop & Boatyard. In managing one of the few remaining full- service yards still operating in Scotland, Bob and James have been working tirelessly to ensure that their full schedule of jobs is completed in time for the start of the season. To help with the workload, we have brought in Shaun Doy as a trainee engineer, while Richard Coley has joined the team as a yard hand and Ian Burton is a new addition to the rigging team. A fond farewell – John MacInnes finally lived up to his threat/promise and retired, although he hasn’t exactly embraced the pipe & baffies lifestyle and makes a welcome reappearance at Ardfern in between his many retirement jobs!

Perfect Painted Finish
Freshly painted Sparkman & Stephens
The highlights of the workshop’s year saw a stunning finish achieved on the topsides paint of a Sparkman & Stephens sailing yacht along with an equally impressive finish to the topsides of an X-42 yacht (vinyl wrapping rather than painting). The engineers oversaw an exercise in logistics to replace the batteries in a Dutch motor sailer (where each of the dozen batteries weighed over 100kg and there was no direct access to the battery compartment) and fitted a new Perkins engine to a Swan 49. Meanwhile the riggers were as industrious as ever, replacing running and standing rigging on various vessels from a MacGregor 26 to a Rustler 42. The boatbuilding, rigging, engineering and yard teams have all earned their two-week break over the festive period.

We extend a warm welcome to all new boats and owners that have arrived at Ardfern this year, and we hope that you have many happy seasons with us. We also wish happy sailing to the many visiting boats we saw this year, with an open invitation to come back for a visit in the future.

YOCW 2020
Next year we are looking forward to celebrating Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters 2020, as well as supporting West Coast Waters year-long series of events.

We will be hosting an open day at Ardfern Yacht Centre on Easter Saturday 11th April where you can drop in for technical advice from marine specialists and suppliers, meet the staff and, of course, pick up those must-have items from our chandlery.

We are looking forward to helping celebrate the Clyde Cruising Club’s 110th anniversary and hope to make as much of a success of it as the fondly remembered centenary celebrations hosted at Ardfern Yacht Centre in 2010. Along with the many CCC events planned, we will continue to actively support west
coast racing regattas and events.

Following the great success of the ‘Pop-Up’ Restaurants run by Lucy Gladstone at the yacht centre this summer, visitors to Ardfern will be looking forward to Lucy’s new venture as she opens the doors on the newly rebuilt and soon to be renamed Crafty Kitchen. More news on this will be published in January.

Despite our best intentions to have the new toilet & shower facilities built this winter, some unavoidable delays left us unable to guarantee that the project would be completed for the new season. So, regrettably, we have had to postpone the building of the new toilet/shower and laundry block until next year. We now propose to start the building work in September 2020 and have the new building open in time for the
2021 season.

We will be revamping our website and developing our social media presence early next year – which will ensure you can keep up to date with news of all that’s happening at Ardfern Yacht Centre.

Merry Christmas and very best wishes for the New Year, 
from Fraser and all the team at Ardfern Yacht Centre

Loch Craignish in December
Boats tucked away for winter at Ardfern Yacht Centre

Wednesday, 3 July 2019


Chandlery Administrator/Retail Assistant Required

Full Time or Part Time Considered

(Competitive salary depending on qualifications and experience)

We require an administrator/retail assistant to join our busy marina, boatyard and chandlery office near Lochgilphead in Mid Argyll.

The ideal candidate will have strong organisational skills, be numerically capable and computer literate with an eye for detail, as well as having excellent oral and written communication skills.

Reporting to the managing director and marina manager, this varied and ‘customer facing’ role will see the right candidate serving customers at the till, dealing with deliveries, booking in stock, answering phones, stocktaking, carrying out pontoon and mooring checks and recording electric meter readings, among other key office tasks.

Experience in retail or an interest in boating/water sports along with familiarity of Microsoft Office packages would be an advantage.

Some weekend working will be required for the role on a rota system.

Please apply in writing for an application form and full job description to Andrew Ashton, Managing Director, Ardfern Yacht Centre Ltd, Ardfern, Lochgilphead, Argyll, PA31 8QN, or via email to before the closing date of Monday 22nd July. Interviews will be held at Ardfern w/c 5th August.

Sunday, 23 June 2019

Now Delivering to Oban Marina

Chandlery Deliveries to Oban Marina

Oban Chandlery
Robin King of Oban Marina and Andrew Ashton of Ardfern Yacht Centre

We are pleased to be able to offer customers of Oban Marina access to our large range of chandlery stock when required. At just £3 per order delivery charge, we can get items up to the North Pier in Oban by 6pm from Monday to Friday, if orders are placed by 4pm. Thanks to Robin, Sam and the team at Oban Marina & Yacht Services for helping us to provide this service.

Saturday, 18 May 2019

Pop-up food in Ardfern


Ardfern pop-up kitchen
Pop-up food in Ardfern

Permanent and visiting customers at Ardfern will be able to take advantage of a new ‘pop-up’ kitchen that will be coming to the yacht centre on some Friday evenings this summer. 
With the old Crafty Kitchen café in the village having now been demolished and a new building shortly to be under construction for the all-new ‘Craignish Cabin’, which is set to start trading in spring 2020, it is hoped the ‘pop up’ will help bridge the gap left by the temporary closure of the facility during 2019.
New operator and chef, Lucy Gladstone aims to serve fresh home-made local produce at the new restaurant, and will use the ‘pop-up’ to provide customers with a taster of what is to come at the ‘Craignish Cabin’.
“I will be cooking up the likes of pots of mussels with home-made sourdough bread, venison stew or seafood paella’s when we do the pop-up at the Yacht Centre this summer,” says Lucy, adding that she will focus on just one dish each evening.
The first ‘pop-up’ kitchen will be set up in front of the chandlery building on Friday 14th June with food available between 6pm and 8pm, and the one-pot dishes costing around £9.50/dish.
We look forward to welcoming Lucy to the Yacht Centre this summer to provide customers with some tasty hot food on some of the busy Friday evenings we see during the main season, and for the first event we will be providing a couple of glasses of wine each for AYC customers who have pre-booked meals beforehand.
The second ‘pop-up’ food event will take place on Friday 28th June, followed by events on Friday 12th July, Friday 9th August and Friday 23rd August. 

To pre-book meals please email up to two days before each event or speak to Bel in the accounts office to book a place.


In addition to the ‘pop-up’ at the Yacht Centre the ladies at the village shop will be setting up a ‘Car Park Café’ in the village shop car park on various dates through the season. The first of these evenings is set to take place on Saturday 25th May from 7.30pm, with ‘all you can eat’ pizza, salads and pudding priced at £15/head for adults and £7.50/head for children. Soft drinks will be available for sale on the night and customers are also welcome to BYO beer or wine.
Please contact the shop on 01852 500298 to make a booking or for further information on dietary needs etc and please note that payment on the evening is cash only. 

Spring 2019 Newsletter



West Coast Marina
Fraser McIver, James Hoad, Neil Donaldson

From the beginning of June we are very pleased to announce that Fraser McIver will take up the position of Marina Manager in the business, overseeing all marina, mooring and storage based activity at Ardfern including all bookings and boat movements. 
Replacing Fraser in the workshop is James Hoad who will become Assistant Workshop Manager from 1st June 2019, working alongside Workshop and Yard manager, Bob Fleck. 
At the same time Neil Donaldson, who has 25 years experience in the leisure marine industry, will take up the position of Chandlery Manager in the business when Guy Neville leaves the yacht centre in June.
Over the summer months Grant Lees will step down from his Marina Coordinator role to assist in the chandlery before leaving Ardfern in mid August to take up his place at university this autumn. Meanwhile, Rachael Fraser will again join the team in the chandlery over the summer period.
We look forward to working with Fraser, James and Neil in their new roles. All three have excellent skills, which make them a credit to the marine industry and we are very fortunate to have them working at Ardfern. We also thank Guy for his many years of service to the company and wish him well for the future, along with wishing Grant every success on his new Naval Architecture course.


With three new fibre broadband lines to the business and six antennas now in operation around the pontoons, the new WIFI network is now up and running and connectivity has been much improved, with much better signal and speed strengths than the previous system.


Now the new office extension to the side of the chandlery building is nearing completion, in what has been the first phase of our building projects for 2019 at Ardfern, the temporary portakabin office in the car park will be imminently removed to free-up more car parking spaces again. 
The building works to improve the shower and toilet block facilities are set to take place over the winter of 2019/2020. 

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Round Mull Race 2019

Round Mull Race 2019 Open For Entries

Boats Under Spinnaker
Round Mull Race Under Spinnaker
Oban Sailing Club has invited entries for this years Round Mull Race which takes place over the weekend of Friday 28th June to Sunday 30th June.   Entry forms can be downloaded using the following link RMR 2019 Entry Form

Oban Sailing Club Race Announcement
Round Mull Race 2019 Announcement