Merchant (Part 1 and Part 4) Registration

UKSR Watermark

Registration of a Merchant Vessel (Part 1)

Your first step will be to complete a ship registration form for your vessel type:

Cargo Vessel or Passenger Vessel and send the completed form to us so that we have all your details.

These provide all the necessary information to check if your ship and owner are eligible for UK ship registration. 

Following a successful check, a Customer Account Manager will get in touch with you, and they will remain your contact point for administration and general policy matters.  They will guide you through the transfer of your ship on to the Register. 

You will also be assigned a Customer Service Manager (CSM) who will deal with the technical issues regarding the survey and inspection of your ship during the ‘flag-in’ process.  The CAM and CSM will remain your dedicated points of contact whilst your ship remains on the UK Ship Register. You can find a full list of fees associated with UK Ship Register services here.

The following documents are required for Part 1 registration (over 500GT). 

Application to Register 

Declaration of Eligibility

Bill of Sale (for existing ships)

Builders Certificate (for new builds)

Copy of Certificate of Incorporation (if owner is a body corporate)

Certificate of Survey for Tonnage and Measurement

International Tonnage Certificate (ITC69) - (for vessels >500 GT)

Deletion certificate or transcript from the current register or a written undertaking to provide one within six weeks

A copy of the ship’s current Continuous Synopsis Record. To advise changes to current Record complete Amendment Form

Mortgage Registration Forms – MSF 4736, MSF 4737 and MSF 4739

Please forward all forms to the CAM in the first instance via email.

Once the above documentation is received, a Carving and Marking Note will be issued to the attending surveyor.  When signed and returned, the Certificate of Registry can be issued.


Additional Documentation Required:

Application to participate in the Alternative Compliance Scheme MSF 4753.

An application for a Safe Manning Document is required for each ship over 500 GT.

In accordance with the STCW, unless the officers on board a UK registered vessel hold a UK Certificate of Competency (CoC), they will require a Certificate of Equivalent Competency (CEC) issued by the MCA.

In order to serve on a merchant ship registered on the UK Ship Register the Master and crew must comply with the requirements of the Merchant Shipping Medical Examination Regulations. 

ISM issues and to apply for a Safety Management Certificate (SMC) audit. 

Information about compliance with MLC 2006 

Information about Seafarer Employment Agreements

Issues relating to Maritime Security; submission of Ship Security Assessments (SSA) and Ship Security Plans (SSP).

The UK Radio Regulator is Ofcom and as the administrator on behalf of a company you will need to complete and generate all radio licenses.

Civil Liability Certification. UK ships and ships coming to or from the UK, or other state party, must have flag State certificates to prove that they have the relevant compulsory liability insurance certificates. 

Each ship, either new-build or transferring from another Flag, must be surveyed before it can be registered on the UK Ship Register. 

Passenger ships will need to apply for stability approval.

Registering a Bareboat Charter (Part 4)

There is a separate process for registering a Bareboat Charter.

To register a Bareboat Charter click here