P&R refused funding for inter-island ferry service

A BID to secure Guernsey funding for underwriting a trial inter-island day trip ferry service was refused by Policy & Resources, it has emerged, as talks between Condor and Jersey over the matter continue.

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Policy & Resources president Gavin St Pier.

Economic Development president Peter Ferbrache announced earlier this week that the States would not be investing any money into a passenger-only service this summer.

Jersey’s Economic Development Minister Lyndon Farnham yesterday confirmed it was still in talks with Condor and he gave more detail about what was initially being proposed.

It was hoped that two vessels could be used with one based in Jersey and the other based in Guernsey. However, without any Guernsey support, it was likely Jersey would just look at having the one boat based there.

Guernsey’s Economic Development vice-president Jan Kuttelwascher revealed yesterday that four out of the five political members of the committee were in support of the move but it could not find the money.

It asked P&R for funding under the Future Guernsey Economic Fund, which according to the Budget has around £5m. in it, but was refused on the basis that it did not meet the criteria.

The fund is meant to deliver on six objectives which include ensuring the provision of reliable, sustainable and affordable sea and air links.

Deputy Kuttelwascher was disappointed that money was not put up from elsewhere.

‘I am very disappointed that we could not locate or identify a source of funding,’ he said.

‘If we had found the funding we would have carried on.’

Comments for: "P&R refused funding for inter-island ferry service"

Walrus

But they'll happily waste money on other things we don't need?

And on their own salaries whilst the rest of us are struggling!

Alvin

None of us can judge whether the States were right to reject Condor's proposals as we simply do not know the figures.

But, purely as a guess, I reckon that Condor's proposals were probably not viable. And if Jersey wants to subsidize the service, with one boat based there, so that day-trips can be organised from that island to Guernsey then so be it... good news for Guernsey Tourism. I do not see it happening though.

Such a service would be vital for Guernsey Tourism, but there are alternatives. Look again at the proposals of Alderney Shipping Co or Bumblebee... they both had suggestions in the past - one using a 41 seat ferry and the other a 140 seat ferry. And bear in mind that Manche Iles Express have the right type of ferries and, fortunately, will be offering day-trips from Jersey to Guernsey and Guernsey to Alderney during the month of August when Condor, strangely enough, will not.

So... talk to the other ferry companies !

Donkey Boiler

Alvin

That's right. If the States are desperate to throw our money at an inter island service then the last company to get into bed with is Condor. They have already demonstrated their incompetence and selfish, total disregard for islanders.

Seeker

Agreed with you. This is a wealthy island and yet no funding!? Condor's unreliability over last two years effectively lost Guernsey around £20 million in revenue from sea visitors so I gather.

Come on States push the boat out somehow and engage with private operators!

#gashtag

Maybe the Bumblebee team can have another crack at gaining support?

#backtheyellow

Ferry Man

Didn't Bumblebee want a subsidy too?

alexandra

Condor have created the problem by having one boat.

Somebody in the States should be appointed full time to get a new operator that is reliable.

Alvin

Indeed. Seems to me that the States have got their priorities wrong. Instead of wasting time and money on trying to find convincing arguments for a runway extension, which they appear unable to do so, they should have been concentrating on finding solutions, not necessarily with Condor and Blue Islands, to the drastic decline in sea and air-links.

Seeker

Agreed. Sea links/harbours in general have always been underinvested compared to the airport, seen rather like a neglected kid! It's the revenue from Harbours that props up the money losing airport. A lot of the time, it is like a ghost town with an oversize cafe on the first floor and departure lounge that is too small.

Investing in the sea links and harbours would provide a better return than a runway extension in my opinion.