Comment posted Job losses of established staff follow SPT’s change of operator of Kilcreggan Ferry by Robert Wakeham.
Surely telling porkies to win a contract would only stack up if the contract administrator was porky-tolerant, so it’ll be interesting to see how SPT handle this.
Robert Wakeham also commented
- Ideally it should be the end of the SPT era, with the future of Clyde passenger ferries entrusted to those with the vision to see the long term value in fostering a useful, reliable system – and the competence, integrity and determination to see their function as not just feathering their own nests while the services steadily decay through official neglect – Scotland’s not in the third world, is it?.
- If SPT were up to speed ferry passengers would buy their train ticket on the ferry, or even be able to buy a combined ferry+train ticket, and there would be no nonsense about having to traipse down to the station ticket office and then back to the train. Train+ferry and train+bus tickets are commonplace in the civilised world, so what world does SPT inhabit?
- Which leaves an outside observer wondering whether politicians at both central and local government level mught have been placing far to much faith in SPT. Easy to say with hindsight, but then I think there were warning signs when some senior officials were brought to book for being more interested in what SPT could do for them than what it was doing for public transport. And the Holyrood government stripped SPT of control of the Strathclyde region suburban train system – that wasn’t just down to party political hubris, was it?
- It’s as if the authorities are turning their backs on this area and hoping it’ll just disappear. There’s a chance for the government to take the lead, for Alex & co to realise that there’s more to building a country than cultivating the fat cats of dubious integrity and realise that they have a duty of constructive care for communities that seem to be subject to destructive neglect. Just what have SPT and Argyll & Bute Council done to foster links between communities on the lower Clyde that grew up around efficient, integrated ferry links that are being allowed to wither away and die in the face of the motor car? The cost of driving is going nowhere but up, and if ever there was a time for realising that these places need robust and affordable ferry links if they’re to prosper, it’s now. Alex, forget the Trumps and Murdochs as role models and remember what Robert Burns had to say about the real people, because they’re who you’re ultimately accountable to.
- The ambience of Gourock station is that of some East European sink town around the time communism collapsed.
Recent comments by Robert Wakeham
- McGrigor supports small scale hydro schemes but is concerned about lack of grid connectivity
If not ‘bitter’, then how about ‘negative’, ‘petty’, or just plain miserable?
Effective ways of providing energy for this country is an increasingly fraught subject, with government commitment to ‘green’ power leading to the perception that our politicians are swimming with sharks, and a proliferation of wind farms that are good for some sectors of the local economy but which are a major cause of price inflation.
And the Kintyre / Arran power emergency this spring served to highlight the fact that large scale wind generated electricity can be likened to a rough single malt – no use unless it’s blended with other spirit to make it palatable.
I live in hope that SSE’s Sound of Islay tidestream power project will prove more user-friendly – as are the hydro power plants described by Jamie McGrigor, as far as I can gather.
Here in mid Argyll we’re being shown the next windfarm proposal – 25 turbines for Electricite de France above Brenfield, which would form a backdrop to Ardrishaig, and would be so close to the recently unveiled proposals by E.ON for up to 24 turbines above Inverneill as to be semi-detached.
That’s up to 49MW plus up to 90MW, that would all presumably have to be ‘blended’ with power from elsewhere to make it digestible, and if anyone thought that ‘fast breeder’ only referred to a type of nuclear reactor, just look at the emerging cluster of wind farms south of Ardrishaig.
- Argyll Flyer spotted going into Ardmaleish yard on Bute this afternoon
Doesn’t the SPTE have a remit to co-ordinate public transport provision here? – maybe I’m imagining it, or maybe they’re just pretending, or maybe they’re only really interested in Strathclyde bus services and the Glasgow subway (on the basis that only a tiny proportion of voters use the Gourock ferries, and politics is all)
- 31 hour shout Tobermory Lifeboat’s longest ever, ending in joint operation with Oban lifeboat
The Oban Times reported on 6th June on the MAIB report on a similar incident last July when a small container ship rammed the Isle of Bute, and apparently legal action is ongoing.
- Refloated cargo ship MV Fri Ocean escorted to Lynn of Lorne – and on into Oban
Not being a mariner, I wonder why – in this day and age of almost universal use of radar (and GPS?) for navigation – ships don’t seem to be equipped with a proximity alarm, a bloody great klaxon fit to waken the dead, that is triggered if the boat closes with an identifiable hazard.
It would have to be capable of deactivation in harbour areas and, eg, places like the Corran Narrows – but would surely be invaluable, especially at night.
Maybe it would be seen as a dangerous threat to the need for proper watch keeping.
- Auchindrain in crisis: facing paying off its two permanent staff
Considering how all the wind farm developers are so keen (and can clearly afford) to provide substantial funding to help local community ventures, this is surely a prime example of an exceptionally good local cause with national significance.
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