Campbeltown sailings cancelled after CalMac ferry ‘makes contact’ with pier

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Sailings on CalMac’s Ardrossan-Campbeltown route have been cancelled from today as one of the ferry operator’s vessels has been withdrawn from service.

MV Hebrides has to undergo repair work after making contact with Lochmaddy Pier on Wednesday night and, to allow engineers to assess the damage, all of yesterday’s sailings on the Tarbert, Uig and Lochmaddy routes were cancelled.

The vessel underwent a temporary repair yesterday to allow her to travel to James Watt Dock in Greenock, which has specialist welding facilities, for permanent repair.

A timescale for return to service will be confirmed once full assessment of required repairs has been carried out.

To ‘protect lifeline services’, MV Isle of Arran is being redeployed from the Ardrossan-Brodick-Campbeltown route to cover the Kennacraig-Islay service, with MV Hebridean Isles moving from Islay to cover the Skye Triangle.

MV Loch Bhrusda will operate additional sailings will operate on Barra-Eriskay.

MV Caledonian Isles sailings will continue to operate as scheduled, and MV Loch Linnhe will act as a second vessel on the Lochranza/Claonaig route to support services to and from Arran.

Additional capacity is available on the Ullapool-Stornoway route on Sunday night. There will also be an additional passenger sailing on Saturday night. There is capacity from Monday onwards on this route for displaced Tarbert traffic.

And while last night’s Ardrossan-Campbeltown sailing went ahead, the route has been cancelled from today.

A spokeswoman for CalMac said: ‘This is a significant disruption for our communities, and we sincerely apologise for this at what is already a very difficult time for them with the loss of MV Lord of the Isles.

‘Our immediate priority is to ensure lifeline services such as food supplies and urgent medical care can be transported.

‘Removing vessels from routes is always a very difficult decision and one we would rather not make, but our options are extremely limited, and this is the only way to protect lifeline services at short notice.

‘This redeployment means that all islands will continue to receive a service during this current disruption.

‘We are keeping customers informed and will provide another update as soon as a full assessment of the required repairs has been completed in Greenock.’