One advantage of a fixed link would be …

Comment posted A83 closed in both directions by Robert Wakeham.

One advantage of a fixed link would be that any government would find it difficult to charge tolls when all other bridge and tunnel tolls have been abolished.

Robert Wakeham also commented

  • Now open again, apparently.
  • Careful, Jim – you’ll enrage ‘ferryman’.
  • Scottish Citylink’s response to why the ‘Service Updates’ section on their website doesn’t mention the disruption caused by the A83 closure is to say that they think the road might reopen soon. In this weather, I somehow doubt that.
  • I’m surprised that the disruption and extended journey times don’t seem to be flagged on the West Coast Motors and Scottish Citylink websites, and it would be very useful to have an emergency timetable for the route south from Inveraray to Campbeltown (and from Tarbet to Glasgow?) to avoid passengers having to stand at bus stops in foul weather for goodness knows how long. Any chance of this, Citylink / West Coast?
    I know that traffic gets glued up on the A82 diversion route between Tarbet and Ardlui due to the very substandard road, but even so it must be possible to predict the ‘earliest delayed timings’, surely?
  • Meaning?

Recent comments by Robert Wakeham

  • Western Ferries: history and valediction
    ‘…which seemed like a refugee from Las Vegas’ – could well be called The Good Ship Bling. But I wonder if there might have been outside influences at work on the decor, perhaps connected with the economic and political clout of the distillers and the steady rise in the importance of Whisky Tourism?
    There’s a parallel here with the Norwegian Hurtigruten system of very long distance coastal ferries, where many of the ‘old hands’ preferred to patronise the ships of more traditional character rather than the brash modern ‘gin palaces’, apparently designed to appeal to the international tourist market..
  • Best Environment Project Award for Helix Park and the Kelpies
    Or the Grangemouth petrochemicals complex?
  • Greece crisis: the timetable and the moves
    The way things are going, if Alex Salmond is at a bit of a loose end down at Westminster he could always take a wad of Euros out of a cash machine (I’m pretty sure you can do that, some places in London), nip over to Greece and advise the new lads running the show on their negotiating skills. Maybe he’s already there.
  • Western Ferries: history and valediction
    Definitely a must-buy, but surely not from Amazon when you can purchase it from your local bookshop in Argyll.
    In fact there’s a parallel here with ferry services – with Western Ferries & Pentland Ferries comparable to your local bookshops and Serco more like Amazon.
  • Council cuts teacher numbers – without consultation – at Sandbank Gaelic Medium Unit
    At least there’s good news from outwith Argyll today, with the new School Closure Review Panel putting a stop to Highland Council’s plans to close four primaries in Skye and consolidate the kids in one new school.
    But maybe – in the not too distant future – Scottish schoolkids will be sitting at desks more like those horrible computerised supermarket checkouts, with nary a teacher in sight and ‘electronic countermeasures’ to discipline any misbehaviour. Roll over, George Orwell.

powered by SEO Super Comments

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • LinkedIn
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Ma.gnolia
  • NewsVine
  • StumbleUpon
  • SphereIt
  • Reddit
  • Slashdot
  • Print

18 Responses to One advantage of a fixed link would be …

  1. If we had competition on ferry services across the Firth of Clyde then for a lot of people taking a vehicle ferry between Dunoon and Gourock might be a viable alternative option to the A83.

    Currently of course this alternative route is a private monopoly.

    You may wish to contrast the situation on crossing the Firth of Clyde with that on the Firth of Forth where literally billions are being spent on providing bridges which anybody will be able to cross free.

    I do not think there is a sensible argument for bridges or tunnels on the firth of Clyde ( though at those prices why not ? ) but at least let us have some competition on ferry prices or restrict them to a reasonable level!

    Look how much it costs for a family of tourists to make the crossing to Cowal. What does it cost for a commercial vehicle to cross? Should we not have a reliable, robust and fairly price transport system in the West of Scotland?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • The Western Ferries service is surely unlikely to be that much more expensive than a competing service, so the viability of a ferry as an alternative to the A83 is unlikely to change if there was once more a vehicle ferry on the town route.
      The ideal would be free – or road equivalent tariff – ferry services on every route, on the principle that vehicle operators pay for the infrastructure through road tax, and you’d charge foot passengers what they’d pay if they could do the same trip by bus.
      I would have thought that ideally a tunnel would be preferable – no more weather related delay and disruption, and for passengers bus (and train) services could be better integrated.
      It’s the capital and operating costs versus those for new ferries and termini, but also putting a cost on weather disruption of ferries, or conversely weighting the tunnel costs for its ‘dependability’ value.
      With regard to the A83, my recollection in the past has been that when blizzards close the Rest the weather also stops the ferries, and so I’d prefer the tunnel option.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • The Turing test is a test of a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behaviour. In Turing’s original illustrative example, a human judge engages in a natural language conversation with a human and a machine designed to generate performance indistinguishable from that of a human being. All participants are separated from one another. If the judge cannot reliably tell the machine from the human, the machine is said to have passed the test. The test does not check the ability to give the correct answer; it checks how closely the answer resembles typical human answers. The conversation is limited to a text-only channel such as a computer keyboard and screen so that the result is not dependent on the machine’s ability to render words into audio

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • What on earth does it matter that the crossing to Cowal is run by a private monopoly? The west coast islands all have ferry services run by a monopoly too! The only difference is that it is the taxpayer that has to fund them, via the hopelessly inefficient behemoth that is known as Caledonian MacBrayne.

      As for the suggestion that RET be applied to the Hunter’s Quay service, were the same formula applied that the SNP already applied to west coast communities, then fares would actually have to be raised!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • It matters because an eminent economist has argued that what is now a monopoly service is the most expensive ferry crossing in the world, making profits well in excess of industry norms.

        I did not mention RET. The Scottish Government should simply cap the profits at an acceptable level, I believe it is within their powers to do so.

        What is the justification for not doing that? They are spending billions on crossings of the Firth of Forth which will be free to use, yet to cross the Firth of Clyde you have to pay dues to a private company.

        The situation regarding tolls on the Skye bridge was deemed unacceptable, what is the difference here.

        The A83 is going to be in trouble for many years even once an emergency road is in place. Having access to a large part of Argyll controlled by a private company is not acceptable.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • One advantage of a fixed link would be that any government would find it difficult to charge tolls when all other bridge and tunnel tolls have been abolished.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • Most expensive in the world? Hard to believe that statement ferryman.
          Was always led to understand the Colintrive / Rhubodach was most expensive ferry crossing in Europe considering time taken and distance covered for passage. £18.25 return for journey

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • All is explained here;
            http://www.brocher.com/Ferries/expensiveferry.htm

            Colintraive-Rhubodach is described as a contender but when you take these factors into account Western is flagged as being the top;

            (a) Length of crossing: the shorter the crossing, the cheaper it should be.

            (b) Volume of traffic: the more traffic the service carries, the cheaper it should be.

            (c) Nature of service: the more basic the service, the cheaper it should be.

            The prices are a bit out of date, but so are traffic volumes which have increased (now a monopoly) and the service has not changed.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • I think this is quite interesting. This problem caused serious inconveince to my family yet there are hardly any postings here apart from an automaton. Does this mean that ForArgyll is really a complete fiction?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. For comparison see today’s BBC Scotland News report on Highland Council’s public consultations on possible solutions to the A890 Strome Ferry bypass.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. I’m surprised that the disruption and extended journey times don’t seem to be flagged on the West Coast Motors and Scottish Citylink websites, and it would be very useful to have an emergency timetable for the route south from Inveraray to Campbeltown (and from Tarbet to Glasgow?) to avoid passengers having to stand at bus stops in foul weather for goodness knows how long. Any chance of this, Citylink / West Coast?
    I know that traffic gets glued up on the A82 diversion route between Tarbet and Ardlui due to the very substandard road, but even so it must be possible to predict the ‘earliest delayed timings’, surely?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • Scottish Citylink’s response to why the ‘Service Updates’ section on their website doesn’t mention the disruption caused by the A83 closure is to say that they think the road might reopen soon. In this weather, I somehow doubt that.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. This is really quite interesting. The raod closure caused my family serious inconvenience yet there are hardly any post here. Does this mean ForArgyll is not really read or is serviced mainly, as seems to be the case, by an automaton?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  5. Only recently discovered ForArgyll – needs more publicity!
    My fear concerning ‘The Rest’ is that there will be a terrible tragedy before anything is done to solve the current problem. As usual too much talk and not enough action! Get rid of Trident from the UK and we would have more funds for public safety and much more.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


All the latest comments (including yours) straight to your mailbox, everyday! Click here to subscribe.