Committee Meeting of the Arran Ferry Action Group

  • Online meeting via Zoom, Thursday 8th October 2020
  • Participants: Gavin Fulton (Chair), John Ford (Treasurer), Sharon Shenhav, David Millar, Sally Campbell, Sam Bourne, Chris Attkins (Secretary)
  • Apologies: Bob Haddow

1. Lack of Progress Report
Gavin still thought that Covid issues overshadowed any likelihood of further media interest in the general malaise of our ferry service at this time. However, he backed Sharon's suggestion of challenging prospective MSP candidates about how they would tackle ferry issues. It was also felt appropriate to prepare a report for the Banner. Committee members were being asked questions by local residents, expressing their frustration at ongoing failures and lack of communication from service providers.
John again proposed campaigning for an extension to the north end service and it was felt this ought to be possible. He was asked to prepare a written proposal.
A number of specific issues were highlighted and discussed. Sam pointed out that the absence of contingencies, coupled with the astoundingly bad planning that would mean so much infrastructure would be out of action at the same time, would very likely cause major disruption to the ferry service over the next months. He quoted from the Ardrossan report, obtained under FOI, highlighting potential problems.
After further consideration it was decided to prepare a summary of the current and anticipated problems in the form a Q&A document that could be released to our supporters, the media and also forwarded to prospective MSPs, whose answers could then be published.

2. Infrastructure Failure
The committee discussed the causes of recent and ongoing issues leading to cancellation and rescheduling of the Brodick—Ardrossan service. It became clear there was reluctance to invest resources in fixing infrastructure, especially on a temporary basis, relating to the imminent alterations at Ardrossan. Peel Ports were identified as the main culprit, having failed to fix the fenders on the Winton pier. There appeared to be complacency all round, with proposed timescales for the Ardrossan works now unrealistic due to no contractor being appointed for works scheduled to begin at the start of next year. David pointed out that Clyde Marina had been asked to clear its yard in preparation for these works two years ago. Sharon stated that to date, no funds had been allocated by the Council. Work was due to begin on the Gourock linkspan on 19th October and would be monitored.

About Us

The current state of our lifeline ferry service shows it is not fit for purpose in terms of reliability, resilience and infrastructure. The Arran Ferry Action Group is a new and fully representative lobbying group, set up to represent Arran interests in demanding service improvements and accountability in future investment decisions.


Contact Us

Arran Ferry Action Group

Shore Road
Isle of Arran
KA27 8AJ
United Kingdom

+44 (0)1770 302 546