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Customer Update - New Islay Vessel Port Enabling Works

Customer Update - New Islay Vessel Port Enabling Works

Update - 31 January 2024 

Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited (CMAL) is leading work to upgrade infrastructure at Kennacraig. 

Timetable  

From 08 January 2024 - 27 January 2025, an amended timetable for routes to and from Kennacraig will be in operation. This will reflect the normal winter timetable service up to 28 March 2024 - however, sailing times will be amended.   

The amended timetables for this period have been published on our website. Our ticketing system has been updated with the amended timetable for the period 8 January to 6 March and our team is currently updating the ticketing system for the period 7 March - 28 March. If you are intending to book travel for this period (7 March - 28 March) please be aware that some sailing dates may be temporarily unavailable while this work is being carried out.   

Those customers who have bookings between 08 January and 28 March 2024 with changed sailing times are being contacted by email and text with confirmation. Our team is working through this in date order. Thank you for your patience while we do this. 

We'll share the summer 2024 timetable, which will reflect the continuing amendments on this route, as soon as they have been published.   

What customers can expect  

We will be delivering our service from a port which is undergoing significant construction works. We are working closely with all parties to minimise the effect on customers; however, we must acknowledge that there may at times be a higher risk of disruption to services. As always, we will keep customers and the communities we serve updated across our channels.  

In addition to the amended timetables, we've shared a summary of what customers can expect in terms of day-to-day operations at the ports. We've also shared some more detail in our dedicated Frequently Asked Questions below, where we've answered the most common questions you're likely to have.  

Transport connections 

We've worked with the local bus operator to ensure that local bus timetables will be amended and aligned to support foot passengers' travel plans up to 28 March 2024, and we will update customers on plans around transport connections for the summer 2024 timetable as soon as possible.  

Changes to boarding and disembarking - foot passengers  

While work is underway at Kennacraig, foot passengers will need to board and disembark the vessel through the car deck. If you think you may need passenger assistance, please do get in touch with us prior to your journey. You'll find a useful guide on how to do that in the Help for Passengers section of our website.   

Changes to boarding and disembarking - vehicles  

To help with traffic flow, vehicles will be reverse loaded on the final departure each day from Port Askaig and Kennacraig. During MV Finlaggan's overhaul (6 - 30 March 2024) vehicles will be reverse loaded on every sailing on both MV Isle of Arran and MV Hebridean Isles. Our crew will be there to guide you.  

Overhaul period  

During the amended timetable period, MV Finlaggan is scheduled to be in overhaul (6 - 30 March 2024). Plans have been confirmed for this period and MV Isle of Arran and MV Hebridean Isles will cover this route during MV Finlaggan's overhaul.  

Next phases of work  

This project is part of a series of major infrastructure works by CMAL to prepare Kennacraig, Port Askaig and Colonsay ports for new vessels. We will share details on works at Port Askaig (March - July) and Colonsay (March - October) and what customers can expect regarding the service during this period in due course.  

Thank you to the communities and customers for your patience while we deliver our services during these construction works. 

FAQs 

I have a booking for travel between Port Ellen / Port Askaig and Kennacraig between 08 January and 28 March 2024, what do I need to do?  

Your departure time and arrival times are likely to change because of the amended timetable. Our team will be in touch with you by email and text with the latest details. You can also view the amended timetable online.  

Will bus timetables be aligned to support foot passengers?  

Yes. Local bus timetables will be amended and aligned to support foot passengers' travel plans up to 28 March 2024, and we will update customers on plans around the summer 2024 timetable as soon as possible. 

What are the changes to boarding and disembarkation during the works at Kennacraig?  

Foot passengers will need to board and disembark the vessel through the car deck. If you think you may need passenger assistance, please do get in touch with us prior to your journey. You'll find a useful guide on how to do that in the Help for Passengers section of our website.   

Vehicles will be reverse loaded on the final departure each day from Port Askaig and Kennacraig. During MV Finlaggan's overhaul (6 - 30 March 2024) vehicles will be reverse loaded on every sailing on both MV Isle of Arran and MV Hebridean Isles. Our crew will be there to guide you. 

I would like to make a booking for a date up to 28 March 2024, but cannot access it on the ticketing system. Why is this?  

Our ticketing system is currently being updated for the period 25 January - 28 March. If you are intending to book travel for this period, please be aware that some sailing dates may be temporarily unavailable while this work is being carried out.  Thank you for your patience while we do this. 


Update - 18 October 2023

Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited (CMAL) is hosting a series of events to update communities on the planned construction work at Colonsay, Kennacraig and Port Askaig ferry terminals. 

In preparation for the arrival of MV Isle of Islay and MV Loch Indaal, work to upgrade the ferry terminals will include dredging, fendering, provision for mooring aids and shore power facilities. 

At the events, CMAL engineers and representatives from Caledonian MacBrayne and Transport Scotland will share details of the proposed construction plans for each ferry terminal. They will also discuss high-level timescales and potential changes to services. 

The events will take place at: 

  • Tarbert Village Hall - Tuesday 24 October 2023, 4.00-7.00pm 

  • Islay Gaelic Centre / Ionad Chaluim Chille Ìle - Wednesday 10 January 2024, 4.00-7.00pm 

  • Jura Village Hall - Thursday 11 January 2024, 2.00-5.00pm 

  • Colonsay Village Hall - Tuesday 27 February, 4.00-7.00pm 

For full details, visit CMAL's project page on their  website

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