Whilst the Clansman covered the Uig/Tarbert/Loch Maddy triangle over the last few weeks, TCC received concerns from the public in relation to ferries being fully booked.
Although this was not highlighted in the recent TCC update in an Tirisdeach, we were in touch with CalMac in the course of LOTI’s deployment. Correspondence for your information is below. The stats mentioned were discussed at the Community Council meeting on 3 Oct.
Further to our discussion yesterday, there is plenty of comment on Tiree following yesterdays press release that Friday, Saturday and Monday are now fully booked and wait-listed. While I realise that the decision to re-position the Clansman will not be reversed, is there anything that can be done with the MV Isle of Mull to relieve this pinch? I would imagine that Oban-Craignure is possibly no longer as busy as high summer, and Mull also has the second string backup of the MV Coruisk.
Alternatively, can the Saturday double sailing, (now ceased for 2016), be extended for the week or so period that the Clansman is relieving on the triangle? As the company points out, it is Coll and Tiree that are bearing the brunt of the MV Hebrides mishap, but a little creative thinking would go a long way to retaining public support.
Also, prior to our Community Council meeting next Wednesday evening, could you possibly supply John and I with route statistics for summer 2016? We would be most interested to learn if the double Saturday rotation has been a success, and also if exclusive use of Clansman during summer 2016 has produced a percentage increase of summer 2015 carryings.
Tiree Community Council.
Thanks for your E mail and sorry for the delay in responding.
We are somewhat challenged again this week with adverse weather!!!
Regarding the LOTI deployment can I thank you and the community for their patience during this difficult time.
In order to help manage the LOTI deployment I have asked the port to review all sailings for the next week and to consider instances where the capacity booked exceeds the LOTI size. Next Saturday is an example of this.
To account for this we have requested that the vessel consider a normal Oban-Coll-Tiree rotation but then follow this with a direct Oban Tiree- Oban sailing to cover the additional need.
I await confirmation of this option but recognise your need to know so will urge.
We are continuing to work closely with the hauliers to ensure all space booked is essential for supplies.
They are helping greatly to ensure we prioritise the essential.
I await Stats from our Stats dept and will share ASAP.
Area Operations Manager
Calmac Ferries Ltd
Thank you for this response and the possible solution of providing a double LOTI rotation this coming Saturday will certainly relieve the pressure over this coming weekend of school holiday traffic etc.
Thanks also for following up on the provision of carrying statistics over summer 2016, which I am hopeful will provide upbeat information, although there is obviously an associated cost.