Logos Hope is a vessel with a past. The former car ferry was converted into the world’s largest floating book fair in the mid-2000’s, but she dates back to 1973. While much of the ship has been updated, her four main engines are still original. Keeping them running is the responsibility of Richard Postles (UK), the recently-arrived chief engineer.
“The ship’s in very good condition for her age,” says Richard. “She actually looks more like she’s ten years old, not 43. That’s down to the great care she’s received and the investment made in renewing many of her parts.”
After two decades at sea and a previous job with Mercy Ships, Richard arrived on Logos Hope six weeks ago, along with his wife and two young children. He’s in charge of 30 officers, electricians, accommodation maintainers and engine ratings. A quarter of them are female, bringing a different dynamic to the team which their boss welcomes. Despite not always seeing daylight during a shift, the team is close-knit and enjoys friendly rivalry with the deck department.
Dubbed ‘the heart of the ship’, the engine room keeps Logos Hope alive. One thing that could jeopardise that is putting fuel which isn’t of the required quality into her main engines. “It’s not easy to find spare parts for things that are 43 years old, so we take great care not to do anything that will damage the engines,” Richard explains. “We’ll resupply with another 300 tons of fuel when we get to Ghana, but we always test that it’s good quality before we use it.”
Logos Hope is constantly on the lookout for more suitably qualified engine officers. “It’s a marvellous opportunity,” says Richard. “If any marine engineers want to experience a different aspect of the industry, live in an exciting, thriving community and do something worthwhile, we’d love to hear from them.”