Comment posted Streamline challenge on Northern Ferries tender underlines paralysis of MacBrayne group by Robert Wakeham.
I don’t understand why ‘the MacBrayne group would certainly face some difficulty in challenging any contract award’ – Why? Surely the tendering process has by law to be a level playing field, and if Northlink (which is surely more than just MacBrayne) were to find fault with the contract award they’d be just as free as any other tenderer to object. This is a government tender involving public money and must be organised fairly, or the media will have a field day and the Transport Minister will have some explaining to do. That’s quite apart from what the European authorities might see fit to do.
Robert Wakeham also commented
- Are you sure you’re not over-egging the pudding? With two separate Northlink services (Stromness – Scrabster and Kirkwall – Aberdeen / Lerwick, the Pentland Ferries route from St Margaret’s Hope to Gills Bay, and the freight ferry between Kirkwall and Aberdeen / Lerwick, to the outside observer it looks as if Orkney enjoys good lifeline ferry services.
- I hope we’re not getting into some sort of Scottish public sector giant pile of sleaze centred on inadequately defined process in tendering for large public transport contracts. It could be stretching from the megabungling of the Edinburgh tram system procurument disaster at one end of the scale to the microbungling of the Gourock – Kilcreggan – Helensburgh ferry links at the other, taking in the Gourock – Dunoon affair and the ongoing saga of Calmac routes retendering on the way. Not sure about the quality of the second Forth Road Bridge contract, but time will tell.
- There should be no reason on earth why any of the bidders for the contract should be prevented from challenging the outcome of the tendering process, if they consider themselves hard done by.
The specific offers for ‘extras’, and of any conditions imposed by bidders – beyond what’s specified in the tender – should be public knowledge, and if they’re not then surely that’s cause enough for any or all of the losing bidders to challenge the outcome; the whole process should be transparent, and that popular let-out ‘commercial confidentiality’ shouldn’t be used as an excuse to conceal any controversial aspects of the process.
Recent comments by Robert Wakeham
- SNP MP backs call for CalMac to put MV Coruisk back on Mallaig-Armadale service – and is to go direct to the Transport Minister
So, if I understand you correctly, different Calmac ships require different, mutually incompatible, linkspans.
A polite response is ‘Oh dear’ but there are far less polite reactions that would surely be in order.
- ForArgyll on Pause
It’s Buckfast, not buck fast – and is named after a Benedictine abbey (also known locally in South Devon as ‘Fast Buck Abbey’).
- New Transport Minister humiliates CalMac MD
If a second ship was added to the Craignure route because the Isle of Mull couldn’t cope with the traffic, it’ll be interesting to see what happens when she’s on her own again.
- ForArgyll on Pause
Salem? Really? – Would that be Salem near Llandeilo or Salem near Aberystwyth? – are you sure they’re not moving on to Mull just to get away from you?
- With Heb Isles in for repairs, CalMac charters replacement vessel to reduce underprovision for Islay
For Nigel MacLeod: given the current ‘pause’ in this website’s customary wide coverage, the way in which the discussion under this particular topic has spread to cover all things Calmac is surely not in the slightest bit surprising – and if particular issues arise concerning Islay service provision I’m sure that people will be keen to add their comments.
For myself, I’d be really interested to hear the reasons for the recent ‘crash landing’ at Lochmaddy, and to see whether lessons can be learnt, given that there was what appears to have been a similar incident at Kennacraig not that long ago and it’s surely reasonable to assume that lessons were learnt then.
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