A written parliamentary question tabled at the Scottish Parliament and answered by the Transport Minister, Keith Brown MSP, has revealed a fascinating fact that may be of interest to the Dunoon-Gourock Ferries Action Group campaigners.
The texts of the question and response follow.
Index Heading: Transport Scotland
Jamie McGrigor (Highlands and Islands) (Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party): To ask the Scottish Government how many (a) scheduled sailings, (b) actual sailings and (c) sailings cancelled due to adverse weather conditions there were on the (i) Gourock to Dunoon and (ii) Wemyss Bay to Rothesay route in each month between July 2011 and September 2012.
Mr Keith Brown MSP :
The information requested is set out in the following tables.
Sharp eyed numerates will note that the sailing performance against weather of the two services shows that:
- Argyll Ferries achieved 97.4% service on the Gourock-Dunoon route in all conditions
- CalMac achieved 97.7% service on the Wemyss Bay-Rothesay route in all conditions
The difference between the two services in reliability in all condition is an underwhelming 0.3%.
The Ferries Action Group are campaigning for boats like the former ‘Streakers’, the CalMac vehicle and passenger ferries that previously served the Dunoon-Gourock route – boats very similar to the MV Bute and the MV Argyll serving the Wemyss Bay-Rothesay route.
The Bute and the Argyll cost something like £20 million to build.
So the Dunoon-Gourock Ferries Action Group campaigners are demanding that the Scottish Government spend a minimum of £20 million to give them a service that is 0.3% more reliable in all weathers?