‘Island Reach’ by Dennis Oliver

In January 2022 I began to photograph the process of converting the former Royal Maritime Auxiliary Services vessel ‘Melton’ into a hospital ship, named ‘Island Reach’, which will be based in Madagascar and provide medical care and disaster relief in hard-to-reach communities. Most of the conversion work was done at Conwy Quay.

The vessel arrived at Conwy in December 2021. Steelwork for the hospital rooms was added near Northwich, followed by shot blasting and addition of railings and awning support at Bangor. By autumn 2023 the hospital rooms had been fitted out and a dental chair installed. In March and April 2024 the ‘Island Reach’ underwent sea trials around Anglesey.