Announcement expected on return of ferry
Written by Mary O’ Keeffe - Cork Independent
Thursday, 08 January 2009
An announcement regarding the future of the Swansea Cork Ferry is expected over the coming weeks with campaigners saying they expect the service will be reinstated in time for the 2009 holiday season.
The service, which was used by holiday makers and hauliers from both sides of the sea, was suspended from 2007 because of difficulties in finding a replacement vessel for the then ageing ship. Since that date, continuos efforts have been made by local representatives, campaigners and Port authorities to try and restore the service.
According to John Hosford, spokesperson for the Bring Back the Swansea Cork Ferry Campaign, it now seems that these efforts are being rewarded and he expects that their will be a big announcement regarding the service over the coming weeks.
He said that while he was bound by commercial confidentiality, a potential vessel and operator for the service had been identified and that once funding was finalised, it was likely that the service would be reintroduced. He said that the reintroduction of the service was timely and would have very positive benefits for business in Cork and Swansea.
Mr Hosford praised the efforts of the Port of Cork in trying to reinstate the service and ensure there was equitable sea access to Cork . He said however, once the ferry is reinstated, efforts will have to be made to ensure that their is more equitable access by air to Cork also.
Commenting on the speculation, a spokesperson for the Port of Cork said, "The Port of Cork is currently facilitating talks between potential investors and operators. Suitable vessels have been identified and are on the market; however, financing the project could be difficult due to the banks current lending situation.
"Despite the difficulties the Port of Cork is determined to have the service recommenced in 2009. While we are not positive this will happen, we remain hopeful."
This news is really encouraging - but we still need your support to convince the people that need convincing that this ferry service is essential to tourism and business in West Cork, Kerry and South Wales.
Please add your comments to our e-petition now ..... every ‘signature’ helps!
Thanks ! - Adrian