Thank you for time earlier to discuss Clansman redocking plans.
As previously publicised MV Clansman needs to return to dry dock for a permanent repair to its propulsion system.
This has now been scheduled for June 1 with her returning to service on June 12.
The vessel will be taken out of service to have a new propeller shaft fitted and these dates were seen as the best option, as work would be completed ahead of the main summer season.
We realise the impact that her absence will again have on your community and apologise for this, however this is an essential piece of work that we wanted to schedule in before the summer season fully started.
We are putting in place temporary arrangements that will see all lifeline services maintained. The temporary arrangements will see an amended service operating on the Mallaig-Armadale route and suspension of the Mallaig-Lochboisdale route.
Customers seeking to travel on the Mallaig-Lochboisdale service will be directed to Oban-Castlebay or Uig-Lochmaddy services. We have organised extra sailings on the Barra to Eriskay route enabling passengers to travel to South Uist via Oban-Castlebay on the same day. The MV Loch Bhrusda will also be deployed on the Skye route to provide additional sailings for the duration of this maintenance period.
We appreciate that this disruption will also impact on communities on Coll, Tiree and Colonsay, as they will be served by the MV Lord of the Isles for the duration with its smaller capacity.
We again apologise for the inconvenience this will cause, but hope you understand that this work is unavoidable and appreciate the difficult fleet management decisions forced upon us by the vessel’s absence.
A full scheduled timetable will run again from June 13.
Head of Service Delivery North
Calmac Ferries Ltd
Your email of 19 April to Finlay MacRae highlighting the concerns of the local community about the impact of the delayed return to service of MV Clansman has been passed to me. My apologies for the delay in replying.
I want to stress at the outset that we deeply regret the inconvenience caused by the disruption due to the implementation of the temporary timetable and can assure you that a great deal of thought and planning went into ensuring that all of our island communities continued to have a scheduled service while we worked through the problem.
The current situation is one of the most complex with which we have had to deal in recent times, and it has been a significant challenge to manage. In addition, the MV Clansman’s technical problems have been changing during the period that she has been in refit meaning that information given openly, in good faith, at different times, has unavoidably changed.
You will have seen the communications that we have been issuing this week and I hope that these address the issues you have raised.
Regarding relief vessels, our brokers have been continually scouring the market for additional vessels suitable for operation on our challenging West Coast routes. We have assessed a number of vessels over the last 12 months but as yet none have been identified. We will continue the search.
Finally, I would categorically refute the claim that we have a ’could not care less’ attitude. A great many people across the company are working very hard to minimise the disruption and part of that is doing the best we can in communicating with customers honestly and timeously about the situation as its unfolds. We care deeply about our customers and communities of which we are an integral part.
In the meantime we sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused and can give you assurance that we are doing everything we can to return MV Clansman to service. We are currently on track to have the normal service resumed by 23 May and we will continue to issue updates on our website until we reach that point.
Lr, CalMac Ferries Ltd
Executive Director, David MacBrayne Ltd
01475 650241 / 07766 021415
Amended Availability of Glasgow to Tiree Flights – Summer 2018 and Winter 2018/19
Following a meeting of the Tiree Transport Forum (TTF) on Thursday 08th February 2018 with Michael Bratcher (Head of Aviation, Transport Scotland) and Johnathan Hinckles (CEO, Loganair), it was clear from discussions that there was limited funding available from Transport Scotland to support any requests from the Tiree Community for additional flights on the Glasgow to Tiree route over the Summer 2018, including any additional flights (over and above standard flight scheduling) in support of key island events such as the Tiree Music Festival, Tiree 10k / Half Marathon and the Tiree Ultra.
Following agreement with the TTF and Loganair, Mr. Bratcher was however in a position to offer the introduction of a ‘Banked System’ of flights on the Glasgow to Tiree air-service to be trialled over the Summer 2018 Timetable and the Winter Timetable 2018/19 where there shall be an increase of 20 flights to the Summer 2018 Timetable, offset by a drop of 20 flights to the Winter 2018/19 Timetable, introducing a ‘cost neutral’ system to the current Public Service Obligation (PSO) to better support, in particular, the summertime air travel demands to/from Tiree.
This shall result in the following changes to the Summer 2018 Timetable:-
- An additional third flight from Glasgow to Tiree on Saturdays (late morning) using the Twin Otter aircraft from Saturday 30th June 2018 till Saturday 01st September 2018;
- Three additional Glasgow to Tiree Twin Otter flights over the Tiree 10k / Half Marathon Weekend – 05th May 2018 (as provided for last year’s event);
- Four additional Glasgow to Tiree Twin Otter flights over the Tiree Music Festival Weekend – 13th to 15th July 2018 (as provided for last year’s event);
- Three additional Glasgow to Tiree Twin Otter flights over the Tiree Ultra Marathon Weekend – 09th September 2018 (as provided for last year’s event).
**Note – These additional flights should be available on the Loganair Website from late February
The following changes shall then be applicable to the Winter 2018/19 Timetable:-
- Reduction of Winter Saturday Glasgow to Tiree flights from 02 to 01 commencing from Saturday 28th October 2018 to Saturday 16th December 2018 – Late morning flights expected but yet to be confirmed by Loganair;
- Reduction of Winter Saturday Glasgow flights from 02 to 01 commencing from Saturday 05th January 2019 to Saturday 23rd March 2019 – Late morning flights expected but yet to be confirmed by Loganair.
As previously stated, the above amended Glasgow to Tiree air-service timetables are a trial over the Summer 2018 and Winter 2018/19, if any air travellers are unhappy with the amended timetables please contact me directly on the following email address and your comments shall be reviewed as part of the air-service timetabling review next February.
Chair – Tiree Transport Forum
Scotland’s Airline Loganair is increasing services from Glasgow to Tiree and Barra this summer
through a new agreement with Transport Scotland. Extra flights will be added on both routes
throughout the peak summer holiday period from June to August.
A total of 17 additional roundtrips will be added on the world-famous Glasgow to Barra air link
The unique service – flown by Loganair operating Transport Scotland’s Twin Otter DHC6-400
aircraft – lands at Barra’s beach airport, where flight times are subject to the tides. It’s a hugely
popular journey for holidaymakers, aviation enthusiasts and locals alike, and the extra flights will
help to meet high demand during the holiday season.
An extra eight flights are also being added on the Glasgow to Tiree route, spread between the
Twin Otter aircraft and larger 34-seat Saab 340 aircraft. Three more flights normally scheduled
for the Twin Otter will be flown by the larger Saab 340s to provide extra seats around the time of
the Tiree 10K in April, the Tiree Music Festival in July and a gruelling ultra-marathon which
takes place on September 10.
The boost to capacity is a result of feedback from the representatives from each island, part of
Loganair and Transport Scotland’s engagement with communities.
Jonathan Hinkles, Loganair’s managing director said: “The summer months are always
particularly busy for the airline, and we’ve worked closely with Transport Scotland to provide
more seats than ever before to Barra and Tiree.”
The Glasgow – Barra, Glasgow – Campbeltown and Glasgow – Tiree air-links are extremely
important to the remote communities they serve, boosting their economies. All are operated
under a Public Service Obligation commitment by Loganair for Transport Scotland.
Minister for Transport and the Islands Humza Yousaf MSP said: “These improvements come
following consultation with local communities, so I have no doubt they’ll be welcomed by
passengers who depend on the Public Service Obligation routes.
“Not only will there be additional flights for both Barra and Tiree over the busier summer period,
Loganair will also amend the timetables to smooth out the impact of the tidal variations at Barra
on the Tiree service. This will offer more continuity and certainty for passengers.”
“These air links play a crucial role for the communities they serve and we will continue to have
dialogue with island representatives and Loganair to make sure we’re offering the best possible service.”
Tiree Community Council, Tiree Development Trust and their local MSP, Michael Russell met with the Minister for Transport and Islands, Humza Yousaf today, Tuesday 24th January in the Scottish Parliament.
The Minister opened the meeting by confirming that he will take up the Community Council’s offer to visit Tiree in early summer.
The Community Council firstly took the opportunity to acknowledge the positive improvements to sea and air transport links they have seen with Transport Scotland. The Minister was able to announce that there will be increased capacity of eight flights to be added to the Glasgow to Tiree route, spread between the Twin Otter aircraft and larger 34-seat Saab 340 aircraft. Three more flights normally scheduled for the Twin Otter will be flown by the larger Saab 340s to provide extra seats around the time of the Tiree 10K in April, the Tiree Music Festival in July and the ultra-marathon in September.
Following negotiations with BT the Minister advised that a further green cabinet is to be fitted in Tiree. The go ahead has also been given by planning for the erection of a 4G mast. Housing issues were also raised and Michael Russell MSP confirmed he will write to Argyll & Bute Council about planning permissions for new entrant croft housing.
Following the meeting Tiree Community Council Secretary, Ian Gillies said:
“This was an extremely useful and constructive meeting for the Tiree Community.
“We were extremely pleased to be given the chance to cover so many issues that are important to Tiree.”
Michael Russell, MSP for Argyll and Bute said:
“This meeting was very successful and gave the opportunity for the Minister to hear from the Tiree Community.
“I look forward to the Ministers visit to the Tiree and hope to join him to follow up the important points raised today.”