Guernsey Press

Islander out of action because of technical issue

Condor Islander has been withdrawn from service for a week, despite only beginning sailings on Sunday.

Condor Islander in St Peter Port earlier this week. (Picture by Luke Le Prevost, 32659194)

She has been withdrawn for precautionary repairs following the discovery of a technical issue with one of her forward bow thrusters.

What should have been a successful week for the ferry company, with the Islander going into service, combined with a busy half-term, has been left in disarray.

The service launched on Monday, arriving in Guernsey from Portsmouth at about 8am.

However she was unable to berth in Jersey due to technical issues and resumed service in Portsmouth on Tuesday.

The withdrawal will affect five rotations from Portsmouth to the islands from today through to next Thursday.

‘The limited number of passengers affected are being notified by contact centre staff and offered alternative sailings,’ said a Condor Ferries spokesman.

‘We regret the inconvenience caused which is being compounded by poor weather forecast for this weekend.’

The 18-year-old ferry arrived in Spain from New Zealand in June and then underwent months of refit work in Poole before entering service this week.

The forecast bad weather saw Condor Ferries schedule extra services for today ahead of potential cancellations this weekend.

However some passengers have reported spending more than two hours on hold when trying to rebook onto the additional services.

Some said that their re-booking did not include departure times and important details.

Others commented they had got quicker information from a local ferry Facebook groups than from Condor.

While not possible for all, those who visited in the Condor Ferries offices on the New Jerry reported friendly and helpful staff who were able sort it immediately.

Others are stuck in France, unsure when they can return to the islands, unable to get through via phone or online live chat.

The local weekend forecast is for south to south-west winds gusting to force 7, with heavy rain.