Comment posted MSP’s views on the A83 situation by ferryman.
Robert, I had missed you saying that.
So to be clear then you want the charges on Western Ferries to be capped at the level of RET?
Presumably you only want compensation paid to Western if they then make less than what might be considered a “fair” profit for the industry sector?
ferryman also commented
- As I understand it there is nothing to stop the Government now imposing a limit on the profit margin made by Western Ferries – I could be wrong but the situation seems straightforward. If there are any legal beagles out there comments would be welcome.
Western are now the sole provider of a vehicle crossing of the Firth of Clyde. Dunoon and Cowal would be in a dire situation if it did not exist.
The crossing is therefore providing an essential service. As such there does not seem to be anything to stop the Government imposing a Public Service Obligation on the company, limiting its fares and profit margins to a “fair” level – there is no need to provide compensation if this is done, because of course the company is still gaining a “fair” profit margin.
I wish to see competition on the route. However if the current monopoly situation persits then really the Government have a duty to act as, if the current levels are in excess of “fair” then surely that is profiteering?
Of course the Government has been very clear about the effect of RET where it has been introduced – both vehicle and passenger number have increased dramatically. The result could therfore be a win for all, with Western carrying more traffic at lower fares and lower profit margin but actually making more money.
As I said I prefer competition, but Public Service Obligations seem a fair alternative.
- The Government is permitted to subsidise the passenger only service in Dunoon to a fair level of profit under EU rules. So there is already some way of deciding what “fair” is.
I believe the Government can simply impose a Public Service Obligation on Western Ferries to charge fares that result in a fair profit.
I want competition. Failing that I want Western limited to a fair profit.
You are suggesting RET which I suspect will result in even cheaper fares (the crossing is short), fine. Though I think in that case a subsidy might be required.
- You are trying to shirk the question again.
What would be wrong with a private company solving the problem on the “Rest” with a “truely excellent” solution and then being free to charge say £40 for a family of four in a car to make a return trip? Commercial vehicles would be charged a lot more no doubt.
You seem to be in favour of the equivalent for the people of Dunoon, but don’t want it for your self on a road that you use.
Perhaps you see some drawbacks when you want to travel, for tourism, and for the price of goods and services – do these drawbacks not also apply in Dunoon?
- What do you think would be a fair fee for a return ticket on the “Rest” for a family of four. Maybe £40? That would be in line with the Firth of Clyde ferry crossing. Do you think perhaps that might have an adverse effect on tourism and commerce in general?
Its certainly a lot more than the Forth Road bridge which is costing billions but will be free to use.
- Of course it is a sensible question. Tolls can be charged on motorways, bridges, tunnels – anything you want.
The trend has been to remove them. However on the Dunoon Gourock ferry route we have gone completely in the opposite direction. We have a sole supplier with no control on fares or profit. I don’t want free vehicle ferries just competition, you (who don’t use the service) keep arguing against it.
So why would you object to tolls on the “Rest” with no control on fares and profit. It seems like exactly the same situation for me.
Is the only difference that you use the “Rest” and so are not quite so keen on the idea of private monopolies when its your pocket that get hits. Really Robert you are spoilt for choice there is the A83 or the A82.
Recent comments by ferryman
- Argyll Flyer in Ardmaleish boatyard
Will the current linkspan works be completed by Friday 21/June?
Working on the linkspan while the Argyll Flyer was having its recent scheduled maintenance would have made sense, but they did not do it.
Bring forward maintenance on the Argyll Flyer by a minimum of 6 months and more than likely 8-9 months seems odd.
Why are they not waiting till September to work on the Argyll Flyer. That is closer to when she is due her maintenance and I hear the Gourock linkspan will be out of action again then?
- Shetland Line remains in legal contention with Scottish Government on Northlink Ferries tender
Regarding the Dunoon Gourock ferry service one of the ‘needs and requirements’ the Scottish Government failed to specify was that the vessels employed could actually operate reliably in the weather on the Firth of Clyde.
How incompetent is that!
- Argyll Flyer spotted going into Ardmaleish yard on Bute this afternoon
The Ali Cat was having technical problems whilst the Argyll Flyer was being maintained recently, resulting in periods of no service.
Following its maintenance the Argyll Flyer was indeed continuing to suffer technical problems.
The linkspan at Gourock is now being serviced with the result that the Argyll ferries is, once again running a reduced service. This happened right through the Dunoon Film Festival.
It is beyond belief that the Argyll Flyer maintenance and the repairs to the linkspan should not have been planned to run concurrently and without clashing with the Film Festival.
- Scottish Government forced to intervene on loose-mouthed Russell gaffe in Campbeltown
JimB asked “why does Dunoon not set out to attract day trippers?”
Dunoon would make an excellent destination for people from Glasgow seeking both Day Tripper and Weekend Breaks.
Why don’t they come though?
Well they certainly won’t drive the long way round, it is too far. There are plenty of other attractive destinations that are closer to home.
A relatively short drive and the pleasant experience of a ferry crossing to the town ought to be attractive, but then we hit the price barrier – £44.50 for a young family of 4 in a car.
Why would people pay that premium to come to Dunoon when they can go elsewhere?
The passenger only service is unattractive because of its unreliability.
What Dunoon needs is a truly competing vehicle ferry services.
- Reminder: Argyll Ferries on ‘refit’ service schedule
The scottish Government has failed to deliver on the transferable ferry tickets it was going to setup. The bus scheme is a bodge that adds anything upto two hours to travel time.
Any news on what they are going to do for Cowal Games or are they just going to try another gamble on the weather.
powered by SEO Super Comments