Frigg Timeline

  • June 1971 – The Frigg gas field is discovered in April, spanning the border of the Norwegian and British sectors of the North Sea. It was one of the largest offshore gas fields in the world and was named after the Norse goddess of fertility. 

  • 1974 – Construction of the Frigg Transportation System, the twin 32 inch (81.3 centimetre) pipelines from the Frigg Field to St Fergus, begins. Pipeline 1, the Frigg UK pipeline, carries gas from the British sector and is owned by British interests; Pipeline 2, the Frigg Norwegian pipeline (now Vesterled), carries gas from the Norwegian sector and is owned by the Norwegian interests. 

    Section of the 32" pipeline leaving one of the pipe laying barges
  • 1976 - The Frigg Treaty (the Unitisation agreement) between Norway and Britain, is signed on 10 May. It is the first international treaty of its kind for the production of offshore hydrocarbons. 
    MCP-01 is installed. The platform is towed into position by tug boat from the construction site at Stromstad in Sweden. 

    MCP-01 leaving the construction site, 1976
  • 1977 – Pipeline laying is completed in the summer. The University of Aberdeen assists in restoring the sand dunes, disturbed during the pipe laying process, to minimise ecological damage. The monitoring of the environment is ongoing. Phase 1 construction of the St Fergus Terminal begins. The first gas arrives at the terminal on 13 September after a successful test two days earlier. MCP-01 becomes operational in September when gas from the UK facilities of the Frigg Field began flowing through the Frigg UK pipeline. 

    Diver welding a section of the 32" pipeline underwater
  • 1978 – Phase 2 construction of the St Fergus Terminal begins. On completion, it covers 178 acres. The Queen inaugurates the St Fergus Terminal on 9th May. Gas from the Norwegian facilities of the Frigg Field starts to flow in the Frigg pipeline in August. 

    The Queen officially opens and inaugurates the St Fergus Terminal
  • 1982 – The installation of compression facilities on MCP-01 begins. Once operational, they increase the capacity of the pipeline between MCP-01 and the terminal, meaning more gas is delivered to St Fergus. Construction work to expand the facilities begins at St Fergus, including a sixth process stream, a fifth condensate tank, new metering facilities and additional pressure control valves. 

    Temporary crane being lifted onto MCP-01 at night
  • 1983 – The compressors, then the largest installed in the North Sea, become operational in October.

  • 1987 – Gas compression facilities are taken out of service on MCP-01. Phase 3 construction of the St Fergus Terminal begins; it begins receiving gas from the Alwyn Field. 

    Redundant air compression equipment and facilities on MCP-01
  • 1991 – St Fergus begins receiving gas from the Miller field. 

  • 1992 – MCP-01 converts to ‘not normally manned’ (NNM), and operations are controlled remotely from St Fergus. 

    Semi-submersible Borgland Dolphin alongside MCP-01
  • 1993 – St Fergus begins receiving gas from the Bruce Field. 

  • 2001 – The Norwegian Heimdal platform is connected to the Frigg Norwegian pipeline (Pipeline 2). After the work is completed, Pipeline 2 and the Norwegian facilities at St Fergus become part of the Vesterled gas transportation system. 

    Diagram of Frigg Transportation System before the bypass at MCP-01
  • 2003 - Ownership of the Vesterled system passes to Gassled (a joint venture between oil and gas companies on the Norwegian Continental Shelf) with Gassco as operator. 

  • 2004 – Frigg Field ceases production. The decommissioning process of MCP-01 begins and consultations with stakeholders get underway. The Frigg UK pipeline is rerouted to bypass MCP-01, enabling the Frigg UK pipeline formerly leading through the base of the platform to remain in use after MCP-01 has been decommissioned. The 24” pipeline from Alwyn is bypassed from Frigg with a direct subsea connection to the 32” Frigg UK pipeline. 

    The Frigg field ceased production in 2004 with pipelines rerouted to bypass the platform
  • 2005 – Similar bypass work is carried out at MCP-01 on the Vesterled pipeline. 

  • 2006 – Removal of MCP-01 topside facilities begins.