HM King Willem-Alexander of The Netherlands reopened the renovated De Ruyter Maritime and Logistics College in Vlissingen, Holland, on 3rd February, 2017.
He then went aboard the emergency towing vessel Guardian, operated by leading towage and salvage specialist Multraship, which works closely with the college.
De Ruyter Maritime and Logistics College trains students as helmsmen and marine engineers, among other things. The renovation means they now have modern teaching facilities, including new radar and bridge simulators. The refurbished college premises embrace a number of nautical features, including two rooftop classrooms in the style of a ship’s bridge. The exterior, meanwhile, symbolises the shape of a container terminal.
HM King Willem-Alexander performed the reopening ceremony by moving a ship’s telegraph to ‘Full Speed Ahead’. Multraship vessels, berthed in front of the school, saluted the king with their ships’ horns and water-cannon fountains.
De Ruyter College has worked alongside Multraship for decades. The company offers traineeships to students to allow them to gain the required practical experience. The King undertook a brief trip aboard the towing and salvage vessel Guardian, taking the opportunity to speak with the crew and trainees working on board the ship. The Guardian has been hired by the Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment for 10 years to provide emergency assistance to ships in trouble in the North Sea. This arrangement takes place under the direction of the Dutch Coastguard.
The King’s visit preceded the college’s annual Shipping Day, held on 4th February, during which prospective students and interested parties were able to familiarise themselves with training and career opportunities in the maritime and logistics sector.
HM King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands is pictured being welcomed on board Multraship’s Emergency Towage Vessel “Guardian” by Captain Henk Helmendag. Also pictured are Provincial Governor Han Polman, and Henrik Stevens, Principal of the college. (Photo ANP)