Condor is urged to buy ferry to help on UK route

CONDOR has been urged by a States committee to buy an additional second-hand ferry to run to the UK, and to buy a new purpose-built vessel in a few years’ time.


Economic Development also called on Condor to run a passenger-only inter-island service.

The ideas were put to Condor chief executive Paul Luxon during a meeting looking at the comprehensive review of the company’s operations.

Economic Development vice-president Jan Kuttelwascher said Condor Liberation had not delivered on what was promised since it had replaced the two wavepiercing catamarans.

‘We would like to see a third ferry on the northern route,’ he said. ‘We used to have three ferries going to Weymouth, Poole and Portsmouth, and we want to go back to that.

‘The main problem we have at the moment is that the Condor Liberation can only cope with one rotation on this route.’

Deputy Kuttelwascher, who said the Liberation was unable to serve Weymouth, attributed Condor’s move from five ships to four as the main cause of schedule disruption.

‘This has led to inconvenient times of arrival and departure, and disruption to the service will continue without a third fast ferry,’ he said.

Deputy Kuttelwascher proposed the immediate purchase of a second-hand ferry, with a view to constructing a purpose-built vessel in the longer term.

Comments for: "Condor is urged to buy ferry to help on UK route"

Mr Bee

Sound Good, lets see?


There is one crucial word wrong with this headline

Swap "urged" for "ordered"

Praise for JK bringing this up


How can you force them? No contract exists between Guernsey and Condor..

Earl Godwin

Here we go yet again #comedyferries

And guess what...?????

Nothing won't happen...

And then a big invisible ferry will come and save the day...

Cher Eugene

"Nothing won't happen"

So what will happen? An extra ferry? Luxon jumps of the end of the Albert Pier!!?


No No No!. This service will not improve until they have opposition. That is why, we, the people of Guersey must run our own ship as an EXTRA service to any existing service, even if we have to form another company to run it.


Curly - that's a great idea in principle but (a) where is the money for the States to buy/lease a ferry? Would you be happy to pay more taxes? And (b) the passenger route is the loss making part of the deal. The freight contract is the money making bit. By the States just operating a passenger service, it would cost money. Again - meaning increased taxes for Joe Public.......

Ferry Man


Do you honestly believe the Jersey/Guernsey/UK route could support two operators? If that was the case why have we not seen a competitor on the route already.

It is not clear from the article if Deputy Kuttelwascher wants condor to supply a second conventional ferry or a fast craft. In the paper article he mentions that there are plenty of second hand ferries available. Well if he means a conventional, he is wrong.

We are nearly in September now and heading towards the end of the season. What Condor should be doing is planning for 2017 and making the announcement of their fleet early.


I'm not sure there's sufficient market to run two viable quality ferry services. Neither do I think a fully nationalised ferry service is the answer as it will end up being another tax drain like Aurigny.

I think the answer lies somewhere in the middle of those two solutions.

First, the States of Guernsey (and Jersey) should be a lot more involved in determining what service is required - including negotiating the routes.

Second, there should be a robust service agreement with teeth that ensures whoever provides the service does it well or else.

Unfortunately negotiating these kind of deals doesn't appear to be one of the States of Guernsey's strong points - but now seems as good a time as any to change that.

Ferry Man

I still believe the Scottish Islands model is the best. There the Scottish Government own the ships and they decide who can use them by tender. If the operator fails then they have to hand back the ships.

Donkey Boiler

The Scottish government is subsidised by the UK government, and the UK goverment has a population of 64 million to provide tax pounds, not a population of 160,000. (Jersey & Guernsey).

guern abroad

Why not run them if going to also own them. CT Busses is a bit like what you are proposing and I don't they are working as well as the previous bus company.

I don't want to pay for a decent conventional ferry or two and then see any profits of just operating the boats go to some third party who quite frankly charge what they like and hike prices faster then I make fresh T. Right now I do not think we the tax payer are getting value from money from the subsidies I think Condor are already getting that came up in an earlier article and was very surprised to read them that they did. I would love to know more about what subsidies Condor are already getting (if they are).

Ferry Man

DB I think many in Scotland will argue the other way and that North Sea Oil revenue has for many years funded Scotland.

The point that I was raising is that the Scotish Government chooses to subsidize ferry services in this way, both the Northern and Western Isles. At the same time they support air links with those communities that have airports.

Guern Abroad This model has been successful. It comes down to the quality of the operator and their aspirations. In the case of CT Plus they won the tender. You can argue that perhaps it wasn't fair, but Island Coachways could have bid more.

I am not sure where you read that Condor are already getting subsidies as I am not aware that they are.

At the end of the day as I see it, there are three choices;

1. Continue with a private operator, but be prepared to see what we have seen in the last few years at a cost to the passenger, not the States

2 Go down the route of the Scottish model, at a cost to the States of providing the capital of purchasing the ships, but getting the operator to cover the operating costs, including some return on Capital, at least cost to the taxpayer.

3 Nationalise the service and get the States to own an run it. The most cost to the Taxpayer and a minefield to operate


Both islands governments are running losses, where will this capital come from?


Guernsey cant do this alone as simply not enough traffic to and from Guernsey for one ferry let alone two that would be required to provide what many would like to see...

guern abroad

It is good and touches the hot spots inter islands connections and lack of Weymouth service but feel it is too little too late and not enough.

We do not want another fast ferry, we need a reliable all year round service and that is not another fast ferry.

Rocquaine Pirate

We need a conventional RoRo ship, which can be leased ( no need to purchase) running to Weymouth. In fact maybe two with the other running to Poole.


The secret to liberations 98 percent reliability is whenever it's late they simply re,schedule so the boat is never late always on schedule very clever really and the

Public will never work that one out.


Why have not Condor thought of this idea themselves, surely they didn't need to be told,. lets have some action from them not just PR spin, which PL is very good at.


An 'on-time' conventional ferry taking 4 1/2 hours is much faster than a 3 hour late fast ferry! Especially if its to Poole.


So haw many have confidence in Luxon not many I suspect.

donkey doos

A friend of mine won a day trip to Jersey, Ha, try finding sailings that you can actually spend some time ashore !

Condor keep spouting on about this 98% of theirs but they do not take into consideration all of the delays etc which are common and put peoples travel plans into disarray. I was delayed by several hours last week and for the second delayed sailing in a row i was not contacted by them. When i asked the guy at the terminal he said oh sorry we have just found out, constant lies time after time.


Another weak response from the States - why not fine them for late/non arrival - oh I forgot they signed a useless service agreement.

"Dont mess with me" seems to have gone missing again.

Donkey Boiler

Now that it has been reported that the States are to have talks with Condor's owners, Macquarie, will Condor now stop denying the Condor/Macquarie/Austal link that they have thus far indignantly and strenuously claimed has never existed...? This is the reason that they were FORCED to buy the Liberation abomination of a ship that no-one wanted, and that Macquarie wanted off Austal's hands so that they could continue building other vessels.

Donkey Boiler

Liberation down to two engines again today, so all Guernsey bound passengers have to go via Jersey, so much for a 'fast' ferry service!

BUT, it won't adversely affect Condor's record of reliability as the service has been RESCHEDULED, so will be on time on the NEW schedule. This expertise in propaganda would have made the Third Reich proud!

DontMentionThe War

Today's winner of the Don't (indirectly) Mention The War prize!

donkey doos

Technical issues again well what a surprise !

Passengers travelling from Poole to Guernsey now via Jersey 7 hours on board this "fast ferry" could swim it quicker, will get a £7.00 voucher. Whoopee doo Condor your generosity astounds me ! Amazing customer service. Keep it up Mr Luxon.


Poor old Mr Luxon i bet he wished he never jumped ship:) . He was never the brightest spark but he will know i hope that the poblems started when one fast ferry replaced two leaving no room for tech failures. Until thats resolved there will never be a strong reliable service.


A back-up ferry is a sound idea, but not sure it has to be another conventional ferry. Condor Express didn't have half the unreliability issues of the Liberation, so how about getting something like that back on the Weymouth route?


Sorry folks, but as I see it Condor are not in a fit state to run a shipping company, so to my mind we will have the same management even if they get a new ship.

We need to have a clean slate, new company, new ships, job done.


And where will that come from?