This week, there comes a parting of the ways for us and the vessel Baldvin NC, previously called Baldvin Þorsteinsson EA, when it is handed over to its new owners. This occasion marks the end of its 25 years of success with the Baldvin name.
The freezer trawler Baldvin Þorsteinsson EA came to Iceland 25 years ago on November 20th 1992, and was Samherji’s first new built vessel. It was built in Flekkefjord in Norway, a 1,500 tonne ship and 66 metres long. The first captain to take command was Þorsteinn Vilhelmsson and other captains during the 10 years that the ship was part of the Samherji fleet were Arngrímur Brynjólfsson, Guðmundur Jónsson and Hákon Þröstur Guðmundsson.
Baldvin Þorsteinsson EA was a very successful vessel and its crew broke various catch records. In 1999, for example, Baldvin EA was the first Icelandic ship to push the catch value up to one thousand million ISK.
In 2001 the vessel was sold to Deutsche Fischfang Union (DFFU), Samherji’s subsidiary in Germany and was handed over in May 2002. The ship was named Baldvin NC and has been operated by DFFU for over 15 years. The captains of Baldvin NC in recent years were Sigurður Kristjánsson and Sigurður Hörður Kristjánsson.
The last tasks Baldvin NC undertook for DFFU were two successful trips fishing Greenland halibut off the shores of East Greenland.
The ship has now been sold to Poland and will be renamed Polonus.
Good fortune has been attached to the name.
“The departure of Baldvin NC is a milestone in the history of Samherji, as now, for the first time in 25 years, there is no ship named Baldvin in our fleet”, says Þorsteinn Már Baldvinsson, CEO of Samherji. He also says that, of course, he is hoping to add another “Baldvin” to the fleet, sooner than later.
“This name has brought us good fortune all these years. I am also very proud of the the ship’s excellent condition after all these years. It is a clear indication that the vessel’s crews have been diligent in taking good care of the ship and also provides proof of high quality design and construction at the time of building” adds Þorsteinn Már.
He said that it was fitting to say farewell to the ship in typically pleasant Akureyri weather – the sun was shining brightly and the temperature 20°C last Sunday when employees of Slippurinn in Akureyri worked at painting over its old name on the side of the ship, replacing it with the new one.
DFFU will have a new ship in their fleet at the end of the year, Berlin NC 105, which will replace Baldvin NC.