BOB SEELY CALLS FOR GREATER INTEGRATION BETWEEN FERRY AND RAIL

Isle of Wight MP Bob Seely has called for better integration between ferry and rail services to make connections easier for Islanders and visitors.

Responding to a consultation on the South Western Railway (SWR) timetable, Mr Seely cited examples of where he had personally found it difficult to make ferry and rail connections work when travelling between the Island and Westminster. These echoed the experiences of many constituents who had written to him on the issue.

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He said it was important for SWR and cross-Solent operators to work together to set a co-ordinated timetable, and he repeated his call for the Government to place a public service obligation on the ferry operators to provide a mechanism for intervention on cross-Solent ferry timetables, as well as rail timetables.

Mr Seely said:

“If we want people to use public transport, we need to ensure connectivity is there, otherwise we force people back into their cars.

“I am keen to see the cross-Solent operators working with South Western Rail to ensure journeys are as seamless as possible.

“Routes need to join up and passengers need regular and reliable services. It’s extremely disheartening to see a train or ferry pulling away as you arrive. We need some resilience and common sense to be built into timetables at the very least.”

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Mr Seely also said it was unacceptable that there was no late-night ferry on the Ryde to Portsmouth route.

“The last FastCat to the Island is at 8:20 pm. This is just not acceptable. A public service obligation could change this.”

Bob has written to all 3 cross-Solent ferry operators asking them to plan their timetables with the ongoing connections of passengers in mind. In his letter he said:

“Clearly the Covid era has been a unique situation. Now that we are, hopefully, moving past it, I want to ask you all please to work as closely as you can with South Western Railway and any other relevant group to make sure that your timetables are as public transport friendly as possible.

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“Public transport connectivity is important for the Island. We need it not only for the convenience of Islanders, but also to help people travel to the Island. We all want to encourage public transport use as it is more efficient and more friendly to the environment.

“I am hoping now that you will make public your plans to show that you will integrate as well as realistically possible with onwards rail and bus services on the mainland”.

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26 Comments
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smokey
smokey
2 months ago

for the last 35yrs there has beenno proper connection between train ferry train and bus service

Hope Springs
Hope Springs
2 months ago

The Seedy Soundbite machine seems to have gone into overdrive. Has he got wind of an upoming election?
We can probably guess the reaction of the ferry operators to his sudden plea for consideration of passengers, and it probably involves two fingers.

Common sense
Common sense
2 months ago

Time to push for a tunnel, really. But leave the ferries for commercial vehicles, coaches and motorhomes. Give them something to do

Common sense
Common sense
2 months ago

Imagine, getting onto the Island train and going straight over to the mainland. No standing around queuing for a ferry in hope it is running, No missing connections, especially on way back, no missing of ferries, no need to take a car to mainland.. Just think of all the NEW people that would visit this Island bringing more money..

Be logical, not stupid. It will eventually happen, cheaper now than in ten years..

No more getting ripped off by the Ferries.. at over £100 per crossing peak times..

Clive Heathfield
Clive Heathfield
Reply to  Common sense
2 months ago

i totaly agree with you it makes common sense

Yep
Yep
2 months ago

How can this council have no influence over its transport system? It’s embarrassing that the local MP has to request that operators co-ordinate a timetable, embarrassing.

plato
plato
2 months ago

Sausage has requested that ferry companies “use common sense” when setting time tables etc. No chance – doesn’t exist at the duopoly, never gonna happen

Hope Springs
Hope Springs
Reply to  plato
2 months ago

Oh, it exists alright. Applied in bucketfulls for maximisation of profit to shovel into the pockets of shareholders and bankers, and a select few top employees.

June
June
2 months ago

To have to ask such a simple question proves common sense no longer exists. Any transport operator involved in other connection services would iron out these issues. Admittedly sometimes it cannot be helped do to breakdowns, staff shortages, weather etc. RF and WL need to co-ordinate their arrival and departure times with the Local Network systems, we know the money is in vehicle travel but a large number of commuters live on the Island also. Perhaps if they offered an improved connection service more foot passengers would use the service.

Nick Black
Nick Black
2 months ago

People have been complaining about the Jack of connectivity between the ferries and the trains for YEARS.
Seems odd that our illustrious MP raises the matter when HE is affected!
Bit like Insulate Britain blocking roads. The Police have been slow to take robust action and clear them out of the way, but when they interfere with MP’s getting to work, all of a sudden steps are taken to move them quickly!

Clive Heathfield
Clive Heathfield
Reply to  Nick Black
2 months ago

maybe there is an elction comming up

Mariner58
Mariner58
2 months ago

One of the problems was that the late running trains from London demanded that the ferry wait for them at Portsmouth Harbour, which in turn delayed the Island Line train on a largely single track through to Shanklin but would never wait at Portsmouth for the late returning return connection that they had then caused.

YJC
YJC
2 months ago

Coming from the mainland and arriving at Lymington station in the evening to see that the ferry leaves 5 minutes before the train arrives and means an hour and a half wait for the last ferry wasn’t great after a long journey. .

I can remember – years ago when the ferries would wait for the trains so people could get back to the island.

RichardtheBeard
RichardtheBeard
Reply to  YJC
2 months ago

I’m glad someone has pointed out the existence of another ferry route! It’s often forgotten.

Apparently, the problem “our end” is that SWR, and SWT before, have decided that passengers need a “clock-face” rail timetable, one where trains always run at xx past the hour, and would not budge when W/L decide to run every 35 minutes, or whatever. SWR have stuck to their timetable, they are usually on time AFAIK, but one often sees the train pulling out as the ferry arrives.

One upon a time, the ferries were owned by British Railways. Privatisation has a lot to answer for when it comes to transport.

Clive Heathfield
Clive Heathfield
Reply to  YJC
2 months ago

not wightlink

CLIVE COUTER
CLIVE COUTER
2 months ago

Don’t know about any other connection but as has already been pointed out, the Portsmouth / Ryde route DOES connect. Problem arises when Waterloo to Portsmouth train is late,l; as far as I understand it guard on train radios ahead to Wightlink to warn them, or should not sure it always happens but then that’s in the train operator.. Wightlink can only wait so long, usually about 10 minutes I think. What is unreasonable about that. Factual not knee jerk (never let the facts get in the way of a good rant, but then it does undermine any other real grievances whatever they may be) bu.I still stand by for an absolute avalanche of thumbs down. 🙂

Veronica M Goddard
Veronica M Goddard
2 months ago

Has his mate Pugh nudged him in the ribs?

Old kev
Old kev
2 months ago

As a regular traveler fully understand you can’t connect with the very many services out of Portsmouth harbour and although the connectivity on the island is in its teething stage just returning from a long layoff it’s always been considerate of travellers to and from…. But there’s no excuse for not running a late service the 10:45pm was always well used by commuters and visitors alike enjoying the Ryde hostelries….
The train service extended to suit a late boat would be good but o.k there’s a bus at the end of the pier … No substitute for the late boat though…… We need the 10.45 returned to service!!!

isle of wighter
isle of wighter
2 months ago

my post has been removed and was accurate – put it back up

the trains connect perfectly with the fastcat at the pier head – no issues there.

on the portsmouth side, there are five platforms with a multitude of trains arriving and departing every hour – you cannot possibly arrange a fastcat timetable to meet every train arriving and departing from pompey.

Clive Heathfield
Clive Heathfield
2 months ago

you are wasting your time, the ferry companies wont listen, all they care about is making a profit if they cant fill up the ferry they just take it out of service ,then this forces travelers not to use the ferrys lets see if the Transport Minister Mr Grant Shapps will NOW intervene .Mr BOB SEELY is a waste of time he wont do anything either ,

 

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