16 February 2012
Ferries Review Update 16th February

Following the publication of the Scottish Government Ferries Review late in 2011 there is now a period for the public and  local organisations to express their views and comments. Here in Sleat there is significant concern that the Review, whilst insisting that the Mallaig to Armadale CalMac route has a robust future it is deemed as a 'discretionary service', used largely by tourists, as the Skye Bridge offers an alternative, not an essential 'lifeline' route. However the Review does state that removal of the service altogether would have implications for the local economy, and so have rejected this option. More likely is a reduction in the public funded subsidy for the Summer operations but a retention of the Winter subsidy. For Sleat, and indeed Skye, this could mean a reduction in the Summer schedule and/or price rises on the route which is certainly one of CalMac's most profitable. The local community are, in fact, and have done so for some while, calling for an increase in the schedule year-round. The Sleat Community Council is working with other local organisations and our partners to express serious concerns from the Review to the Scottish Government. The residents of Sleat are encouraged to read the Review shown here http://www.transportscotland.gov.uk/files/documents/reports/Draft-ferries-plan-for-consultation.pdf and write to their MSP and Highland Councillors or email directly to the Transport Scotland Ferries Unit  colin.grieve@transportscotland.gsi.gov.uk . All of the Sleat Community Councillors are available to help residents if required by emailing info@sleatcommunitycouncil.org.uk   The closing date for submissions is 31st March 2012.

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