RET’s ‘dire’ re­sults for Locha­line

The Oban Times - - News -

MULL Com­mu­nity Coun­cil heard the Road Equiv­a­lent Tar­iff (RET) scheme has seen a ‘dire sit­u­a­tion’ at Locha­line as the num­ber of ve­hi­cles us­ing the ser­vice has fallen dra­mat­i­cally since re­duced fares came into force last Oc­to­ber.

Neil Gold­smith, a mem­ber of the is­land’s ferry user group, said a few fac­tors, in­clud­ing the ‘re­duc­tion in the price of camper­vans’, has meant a huge in­crease on all the other routes – but not the Locha­line to Fish­nish ser­vice.

The Locha­line to Fish­nish ser­vice, the com­mu­nity coun­cil heard, was at one time pop­u­lar be­cause of the re­duced cost of the sail­ing – par­tic­u­larly for larger ve­hi­cles. The short cross­ing was also the pre­ferred route of farm­ers.

The route means sail­ing across on the Cor­ran Ferry, near Fort Wil­liam, then driv­ing 30 miles to Locha­line to make the trip. For many pas­sen­gers, it is now as sim­ple to travel from Oban be­cause the in­creased ca­pac­ity on the route, com­mu­nity coun­cil­lors were told.

They heard the Tober­mory to Kil­choan route had in­creased by 98 per cent with many en­trepreneurs on the Kil­choan side spring­ing up to meet the ris­ing de­mand of vis­i­tors to the area.

Mr Gold­smith said: ‘They [ Kil­choan] are try­ing to get an all- day ser­vice for Sun­days to meet the de­mand for pas­sen­gers on the route.’

The Oban to Craignure route, Mr Gold­smith said, was show­ing a 48 per cent in­crease, al­though a re­duc­tion in the num­ber of larger camper­vans us­ing the ser­vice. Com­mu­nity coun­cil­lors said the in­crease in traf­fic was not ad­versely ef­fect­ing the move­ment of traf­fic on the is­land.

Po­lice Con­sta­ble Sharon Carr, who was at the meet­ing on Tues­day July 12, said she was not aware of any sig­nif­i­cant rise in crim­i­nal ac­tiv­ity with the in­creased num­ber of peo­ple on the is­lands.

RET has had con­se­quences, Mull Com­mu­nity Coun­cil was told.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.