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 DATE  NEWS
30/07/09 Western Isles:
On Tuesday 02/10/09 the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) are to carry out a Lifeboat exercise onboard the Loch Portain. All her relief crew and standard crew are taking part. The exercise is the same that happens when a vessel is finished being built and is ready for trials to meet MCA / Coastguard / Lloyds regulations. The plan is to deploy a COSALT Liferaft (the inflatable ones in the circular plastic capsuals) and to "simulate" an abandon ship into one. After the exercise when the MCA have been satisfied, COSALT will remove the liferaft and take it away to be repackage and refit it to the Loch Portain.
 
28/09/07 Western Isles:
Raasay
is once again back at Corpach. She called into Oban between 1730 and 1800 last night. It is unclear what she is doing there at present.

There is the following alteration to Clansman's timetable today to accommodate livestock traffic this evening:

Friday 28th September
_DEP_ _CASTLEBAY _1850_
_ARR_ _LOCHBOISDALE_ _2020
_DEP_ _LOCHBOISDALE _2030
_ARR_ _OBAN _0130

It is also reported in the SoC Forum that the possible fault for the Clansman's recent out of service was due to an engine lining malfunction. It was resolved the next day.

Lord of the Isles will sail early from Craignure tomorrow morning in order to take the Lochboisdale sailing slightly ahead of schedule. The reason for this is the anticipated very low tide at Lochboisdale early in the afternoon.

Company News:

CalMac confirms additional winter services to Islay Back
28 September 2007
Ferry operator Caledonian MacBrayne has confirmed that additional sailings are being provided on the Islay service over the winter to meet the demands of the burgeoning whisky industry.
Following an approach from the island’s distillers, who are experiencing unprecedented levels of demand and increasing production levels, CalMac agreed to investigate ways in which the pressures on current carrying capacity could be alleviated. This has now led to the confirmation of a series of additional sailings which will begin on October 21, 2007. CalMac has confirmed that from that date they will run a two vessel service to Islay to meet these traffic demands. The two-vessel service will operate until the end of the Winter timetable in March 2008, except for two key periods when a single vessel service will apply, due to CalMac’s vessel overhaul requirements: Saturday, November 10, 2007 – Saturday, November 24 inclusive and Saturday, January 26, 2008 – Wednesday, February 16, 2008 inclusive. (The additional sailings are highlighted in bold on the revised timetable.)
Fay Harris, CalMac’s Regional Manager Islay said: “Clearly, the whisky industry is having a very good spell with lots of extra traffic being generated. Whilst this is obviously very welcome, it creates an additional demand for space which we can only meet at this time by creating additional capacity on extra sailings. We have consulted with the distillers and local hauliers to address their specific concerns and the timetable we have devised should enable them to meet their production requirements. We have been able to dovetail our own vessel overhaul programme to coincide with the traffic pressure points. In addition to meeting the needs of the whisky industry we are of the view that the increased frequency of sailings and the additional capacity this provides, will benefit the whole island. I am sure this initiative will be welcomed by the islanders, other island businesses and visitors to the island.”
The distillers have welcomed the additional capacity being offered. Campbell Evans, Director of Government & Consumer Affairs, Scotch Whisky Association, said: “The industry has had helpful discussions with CalMac and the Scottish Government in recent months and the improvements to capacity serving Islay are a big step forward. We look forward to continuing to work with our partners to ensure the service is able to support the growing international demand for Islay whiskies, which is so integral to the local economy."
Details of the additional sailings are being made available through CalMac’s website www.calmac.co.uk and will be made widely available through local media and leaflets, which are also available on ships and in terminals.
Meanwhile, CalMac confirmed that it expects to hear from asset-owning company Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited soon about the ordering of the new vessel for the Islay service, which is due for delivery in 2011. A number of yards throughout Europe have tendered for the order, which is due to be confirmed shortly.
Last week, the Scottish Government confirmed that, following the recent tendering process, CalMac has been awarded the contract to operate the Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services. As part of that contract Islay will be served by two vessels for the whole of the summer timetable for the duration of the six-year contract, starting from October 1, 2007.

Clyde:
Saturn is due in Garvel Dry Dock on the 29th of September and back out on the 13th of October for her overhaul. She is also getting a new sewage tank installed.
Meanwhile Juno still lies at Rosneath awaiting her final fate after being withdrawn.

 
25/07/09 Western Isles:
Due to Adverse Weather the Following Sailings are Disrupted:
 
_DEP_ ROUTE SHIP _STATUS_
1345 _STORNOWAY - ULLAPOOL _ISLE OF LEWIS_ _CANCELLED_
1715 _ULLAPOOL - STORNOWAY ISLE OF LEWIS _CANCELLED_
  _STORNOWAY - ULLAPOOL [FREIGHT]_ MUIRNEAG _CANCELLED_
  _ULLAPOOL - STORNOWAY [FREIGHT] MUIRNEAG _CANCELLED_

Leverburgh - Berneray (Loch Portain):
Reminder of some timetable changes due to tidal conditions:

Wednesday 26th September
Depart Berneray 1100, Depart Leverburgh CANCELLED

Thursday 27th September
Depart Berneray 1205, Depart Leverburgh 1330 CANCELLED

Friday 28th September Depart Berneray 1100, Depart Leverburgh 1215 CANCELLED
ADDITIONAL SAILINGS
Depart Berneray 1000, Depart Leverburgh 1110

Saturday 29th September Depart Berneray 1205, Depart Leverburgh 1330 CANCELLED
ADDITIONAL SAILINGS
Depart Berneray 1000, Depart Leverburgh 1110

Sunday 30th September
Depart Berneray 1330, Depart Leverburgh 1440 CANCELLED

 
24/09/07 Western Isles:
Due to technical difficulties with Clansman, todays 1510 service to Barra will be delayed by around 1-2 hours. Lord of the Isles will return as normal from Coll and Tiree at 1615 and then sail for Castlebay. The loading time in Oban will be longer than normal due to the bow visor being unavailable for use on this vessel. Tomorrow afternoon's return sailing will leave Barra on time but will be approx 1 hour late into Oban due to the vessel being slower than Clansman.

Clansman at the 2nd Oban
berth this evening
  This afternoon's 1700 sailing to Colonsay, normally operated by Lord of the Isles will instead be operated from Kennacraig with a departure of 1800. The Hebridean Isles will sail via Islay to Colonsay and berth there overnight. Tomorrow morning's return sailing will depart Colonsay at 0700 and return to Kennacraig (1035) via Port Askaig (0810-0830). As a result tomorrow's 0700 ex Port Ellen will leave from Port Askaig as part of this return leg from Colonsay. The 0945 from Kennacraig to Port Ellen will depart around 1115. Upon arrival at Port Ellen the Hebridean Isles is due to sit until her 1800 sailing and so will resume her normal timetable at this point.
Hebrides is subject to delays today to accommodate traffic diverted from Barra via Uist.
Loch Alainn is running late with her 1110 sailing leaving at approx 1200. Again this is for technical reasons.

Update on Islay Service:
Kennacraig-Port Ellen / Port Askaig / Colonsay / Oban:
Due to technical problems with Clansman the following service will be operating:
 
Monday 24th September
Dep Kennacraig  ~ 1800
Arr Port Askaig   2005
Dep Port Askaig   2030
Arr Colonsay   2140
 
Tuesday 25th September
Dep Colonsay  ~ 0700
Arr Port Askaig   0810
Dep Port Askaig  # 0830
Arr Kennacraig   1035
Dep Kennacraig  # 1115

Service Notes
# The scheduled 0700 sailing from Islay and the scheduled 0945 from Kennacraig will be running approx 1 hour later than normal.
~ The 1800 sailing from Kennacraig on Monday 24/09/07 and the 0700 sailing on Tuesday 25/09/07 from Islay will operate from Port Askaig
CalMac Apologies for any inconvenience caused.

Canna left Oban at 0800 this morning and reached Rathlin at 1800.

Clyde:
Due to adverse weather the Ardrossan - Brodick sailing by Saturn at 1545 sailing from Brodick has been cancelled.
A decision regarding the Saturn's next departure from Brodick will be made at 1645. Caledonian Isles is operating as the timetable.

 
20/07/09 Company News:
CalMac Ferries Ltd has today signed a Public Service Contract to provide the Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services. The Scottish Government contract, which is effective from October 1, 2007, will last for 6 years. The signing marks the company’s successful completion of a tender process in accordance with the requirements procedures set out in the Scottish Government’s Invitation to Tender.  
 
19/09/07 Western Isles:
Canna has now arrived in Oban after her visit to Corpach. She will presumably stop for a refuel and overnight rest before heading back south to Rathlin Island tomorrow.
Update:
Is is now understood Canna will remain in Oban until Monday while her transit crew are working on Loch Riddon for the weekend.
 
15/09/07 Clyde / Western Isles:
Saturn
left the Clyde for the first time this morning. She sailed from Brodick at 0600 bound for Port Ellen, which she reached at 1215. She undertook berthing trials at both the concrete ramp and the linkspan before leaving again at 1250. She then sailed for Port Askaig but had to lie off in the Sound of Islay as both Hebridean Isles and then Isle of Arran used the pier. Saturn then docked successfully shortly after 1530 before sailing for Kennacraig. She will spend tonight at the north berth before sailing for Brodick once more tomorrow morning.

Western Isles:
Hebridean Isles
carried out the 0700 round trip from Port Ellen (Isle of Arran's roster) before sailing for Port Askaig light. She then loaded traffic for the 1530 sailing to Kennacraig and resumed her own roster. Isle of Arran arrived at Port Askaig with the 1300 ex Kennacraig, just as her partner left and then unloaded before sailing light for Port Ellen. Both ships are now back on their own rosters.
 
14/09/07 Clyde:
Hebridean Isles
left JWD this morning bound for Gourock. She was kept there for longer than planned due to a rope fouling a propeller, but she eventually got away late this afternoon. She will arrive in Port Ellen around 0100 tomorrow morning.
 
13/07/09 Western Isles:
The following services are cancelled for today due to adverse weather conditions:
 
_DEP_ ROUTE SHIP _STATUS_
ALL _MALLAIG - ARMADALE_ _CORUISK_ _CANCELLED_
 
12/09/07 Western Isles:
Lord of the Isles
arrived in Port Askaig this evening, running slightly late. This is her first trip to Islay this year, and the first time she has berthed at the new terminal facilities there. She is also still operating as a stern-loader only. The problem is apparently not to do with her bow ramp, but the visor.
She will operate the following revised tameable for today only:
 
Wednesday 12th September
_DEP_ _OBAN _1530_
_ARR_ _COLONSAY_ _1750
_DEP_ _COLONSAY_ _1800
_ARR_ _PORT ASKAIG_ _1900
_DEP_ _PORT ASKAIG_ _1910
_ARR_ _COLONSAY_ _2010
_DEP_ _COLONSAY_ _2020
_ARR_ _OBAN _2240
 
11/09/07 Clyde / Western Isles:
Hebridean Isles
emerged from Garvel Dry Dock over the weekend and sat in the wet dock for a while, however she has re-entered the dry dock following the discovery of another problem, believed to be associated with one of her stabiliser compartments. As a result she will not be back in service as planned tomorrow. Isle of Arran will sail for Port Askaig and Colonsay in the morning, as per the shoulder period timetable. Lord of the Isles will also operate a 1530 sailing from Oban to Colonsay and Port Askaig. These sailings are instead of the Kennacraig - Oban run.
 
06/09/07 Clyde / Western Isles:
Hebridean Isles
entered dry dock this morning. Services to Islay are now in the care of the Isle of Arran which will be operating those sailings in the timetable that are NOT marked 'A'.

Clyde:
Loch Riddon
has arrived back at Largs and is back on her secondary Cumbrae roster. Loch Bhrusda has moved up to Rosneath to resume her lay-up.
 
05/09/07 Western Isles:
Hebridean Isles
arrived back at Kennacraig as normal, following her regular trip to Oban and then sailed at 2200 for Garvel where she is to undergo bow ramp repairs. At 2330 she was off the west coast of Gigha making 13 knots. Isle of Arran has carried out an extra sailing from Port Ellen at 2030. This is so that she can take over the main Islay roster from 0700 tomorrow morning and carry out the single-ship roster while her consort is away.
Lord of the Isles
is now also reported to be suffering from bow ramp problems. Apparently she too is now only able to use her stern ramp and this may last until her annual overhaul next month at Garvel.
Advance notice has been given that this Friday's sailing to Barra will see an additional call at Lochboisdale on the return leg. After leaving Castlebay at 1850, Clansman will arrive at Lochboisdale at 2020 and leaving for Oban ten minutes later. ETA in Oban is expected to be 0130.

Clyde:
Saturn
has returned to Arran for the last week of her summer duties.

 
04/09/07 Western Isles:
Loch Buie
left Oban at around 0700 this morning and made straight for the Sound of Iona. She resumed service with the 1145 sailing to Iona and Loch Riddon sailed for Craignure, via Tobermory and the Sound of Mull, arriving at around 2030.
 
03/09/07 Western Isles:
Loch Buie
finally left Corpach this afternoon and made for Oban. She will return to the Sound of Iona tomorrow and re-enter service, allowing the Loch Riddon to head for Craignure and an overnight berth before she in turn heads back to the Clyde.

Clyde:
Saturn
left her Arran duties after the 0715 sailing from Brodick this morning. She will be undertaking additional sailings on the Wemyss Bay - Rothesay route over the next couple of days.
 
02/09/07 Western Isles:
Canna
arrived at Corpach today. She joined Loch Buie which is having stern ramp repairs finished off.
 
01/09/07 Western Isles:
Canna
arrived in Oban this evening, where she will spend tonight before continuing her journey north up Loch Linnhe to Corpach tomorrow.

Clyde:
Loch Bhrusda
has continued to support the Loch Shira through the weekend on the Largs - Cumbae run while Loch Riddon remains in the Western Isles.

 
News Logs:
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