Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MSP Alasdair Allan today spoke in a Scottish Parliament debate on Scotland’s ferry services, highlighting local concerns about capacity.
Commenting, Alasdair Allan MSP said:
“Today’s debate was a useful opportunity to highlight the importance of ferry services to every aspect of island life and economy, and outline some of the issues that have caused concern to my constituents.
“Ferries in the Western Isles now have to cope with an astonishing 184,000 additional passengers a year, compared to a decade ago. Many routes now operate at capacity for half the year round. While this growth in traffic has undoubtedly been a good thing for the island economy, it’s appropriate for us to ask ourselves how the people of Paisley or Motherwell might react if they were told they had to book a fortnight in advance every time they wanted to get a bus to Glasgow.
“The Scottish Government has shown its commitment in funding ferry services far beyond what previous Governments have provided. But clearly we need to do something soon to address real problems with capacity. Now it is the time for all agencies to work together to reassure island communities about what shape this most vital of services will take in the future.”