Marine Engineer Gives Time to Maritime Volunteers

MVS members onboard Melita with Glen Jones form DOCKSPEC Marine Ltd. (The Bigger Picture Agency)
MVS members onboard Melita with Glen Jones form DOCKSPEC Marine Ltd. (The Bigger Picture Agency)

Glen Jones, a marine engineer who has worked all over the world on some of the largest vessels afloat has relocated his business to the North East and pledged his expertise and support to a local nautical charity.

Originally from the shipbuilding town of Barrow in Furness, Glen studied for his qualifications from apprentice to Chief Engineer at South Shields Marine College, a career spanning more than 30 years in the marine industry. His career from sea to shore took him through deep sea voyages, shore side placements in Singapore, Cyprus and latterly Dubai, where he worked for Drydocks World Dubai as Ship & Rig Repair Director.

Now, based in North Tyneside, his new business venture DOCKSPEC Marine provides global practical expertise to the marine, offshore and renewable sectors. He also provides inspection, financial specifications, and expert opinion to the underwriting and loss adjusting sectors.

Glen set up the company in 2019 whilst working for a major international cruise line. Whilst docking an Oasis class cruise ship, he identified a gap in the market particularly regarding his experience in dry docking and providing specifications for the scope of work required. The name of the business was derived from these two key activities – DOCKSPEC.

Since then, his business has experienced growth in both commercial and private areas, with much of the projects being reactive, involving travelling all over the world at short notice to rectify operational and technical issues; or to support shipping companies as their approved Owners Representative. Glen is supported by his team of Global Alliance colleagues, located in major shipping hubs worldwide.

Glen has settled in the North East, believing the local region is about to experience a new wave of marine engineering requirements, particularly in the renewables sector. As he explains, wherever wind farms are located, the infrastructure to support them is also on hand.

“When we look at the huge offshore wind farms, the ancillary industry supporting them is not generally appreciated. Crew transfer and smaller work boats are utilised to hot-shot maintenance teams to site, jack up rigs are employed to install the turbine structures, and they also need large support vessels to undertake integrity and operational projects”.

“These vessels and rigs need assurance audits or industry recognised inspections, drydocking and routine or emergency maintenance periods; and whilst I enjoy the thrill of being on call 24 / 7 for deployment anywhere in the world, sometimes it’s good to support what’s on your own doorstep or even back to my home town of Barrow, where the Walney windfarm is located”.

Researching his local area led him to the Northumbria Unit of nautical charity, The Maritime Volunteer Service who operate two small vessels on the Tyne.

“Seeing the work these volunteers were doing on the river, I wanted to be involved in helping the community. I thought it would be beneficial to help them with their vessel compliance and specifications for keeping them seaworthy, safe, and immediately operational. Working with a small boat has many similarities to working with cruise liners or huge support vessels and if my advice keeps them safely afloat whilst helping others then that’s a huge drive to get involved,” said Glen.

John McDonald, Deputy Head of Northumbria Unit was delighted that Glen had offered the support of DOCKSPEC Marine to the MVS.

“We are all volunteers with a wide variety of experience in the nautical world from people who have no experience and want to learn more to ex Royal and Merchant Navy personnel. Having a qualified marine engineer to give us advice is priceless, and we look forward to learning from Glen’s experience of working with vessels all over the world.”

Concurrently with the core business of global marine & offshore life cycle support, DOCKSPEC is now offering a service for other small private boat owners who need pre purchase, condition assessments, damage, or insurance reports.

“Each vessel, regardless of size has similarities and I’d like to pass on my knowledge gained on large projects at the highest level to everyone who can benefit from my experience. Last year, within a 24-hour period, I was onboard a family owned historic 24m Thames lightering barge and shortly after midnight docking a 362m Oasis class passenger vessel. Whether you are a once-a-month sailor, a commercial vessel operator or volunteers doing excellent work like the MVS, I am always available for support and advice with the aim to keep you safely afloat.” said Glen.

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