And the present Uig triangle service should be broken into two distinct routes with
Tarbert and Lochmaddy each having a dedicated ship.
Uisdean Robertson, chairman of the council’s transportation committee laid out the
demands ahead of Cal Mac’s new community engagement director first visit to the islands.
Brian Fulton has been appointed under the shipping company’s pledge to improve consultation
with the islands it serves.
Uisdean Robertson highlighted ferry capacity issues became “increasingly acute” over
the summer in the islands.
Mr Robertson said: “The comhairle has long been of the view that the present ferry
operation to the Outer Hebrides is not providing sufficient capacity during increasing
peak periods to service the needs of the community.
“The Comhairle would once again call on the Scottish Government to provide a second
vessel on the Stornoway Ullapool route.”
He pointed out tourists will soon be looking to book ahead for next summer but the
current lack of capacity is “impacting on the lifeline nature” of the service and
is an “increasing inhibitor” to economic growth and population retention.
Building a new larger ferry for the Uig triangle route is a step in the right direction
but “continuing capacity issues on that specific route can only be fully resolved
by the provision of separate vessels serving North Uist and Harris.”
Mr Robertson said: “We are pleased that Transport Scotland have now recognised and
accepted that there are already very real capacity constraints on certain routes
to and within the Outer Hebrides and the impact they are having.”
Additional ferries required for busy Western Isles routes says council
25 Sept 2017
A second vessel is required to meet demand on the Stornoway - Ullapool route says