Tonnage Surveys

Tonnage surveys involve measuring the length, breadth and depth of a vessel and then performing a calculation

Tonnage surveys involve measuring the length, breadth and depth of a vessel and then performing a calculation

Registering a vessel under Part 1 British Registration with the UK Ship Registry

Tonnage Surveys are required if a boat is to be registered under Part 1 of the British Registry of Shipping. The owner of the boat must be British. They must sign a Declaration of Eligibility and submit an application form along with proof of ownership.

Part I British Registration. Reasons for registering your boat are to:
• Prove you own the boat
• Prove your boat’s nationality
• Use the boat as security for a marine mortgage
• Register a pleasure vessel
• Get ‘transcripts of registry’, which show the boat’s previous owners and whether there are any outstanding mortgages

To be registered your boat must have a unique name.

The calculated tonnage figure bears no relation to the vessels’s actual weight, but is a volume calculation based on the length times breadth times depth. The vessel may be in or out of the water whilst the Tonnage Survey is being carried out.

On completion of the survey a Tonnage Certificate is issued before the original copy is lodged with the UK Ship Registry in Cardiff.

If you engage an IIMS surveyor to do this work for you, they must be authorised by the Institute to carry out tonnage surveys. Click here for list.

The IIMS is approved by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency to undertake Tonnage Surveys on vessels of up to 24 metres length for British Registration.

In addition to British Registration, IIMS is also approved to undertake Tonnage Surveys by a number of other Red Ensign Flag States as follows:
Jersey – Vessels less than 24 meters length
Guernsey – Vessels less than 24 metres length
Isle of Man – Vessels less than 24 metres LOA
BVI – Vessels less than 24 metres load line length
Cayman Islands – Vessels less than 24 metres load line length
Gibraltar – Vessels less than 24 metres length

Fees payable to IIMS are:
Tonnage Surveys MCA UK (mainland only): £85
Tonnage Surveys other flags: £105

It is your responsibility to pay the surveyor directly for their time, work and survey.

Click to search for a tonnage surveyor now.

For more information on tonnage surveys please email Dave Parsons.