Rhubodach slipway replacement work to start soon

The view of Colintraive from Rhubodach ferry terminal, including the slipway that will be replaced.
The view of Colintraive from Rhubodach ferry terminal, including the slipway that will be replaced.

The project to replace the ferry slipways at Rhubodach and Colintraive is set to start this summer.

At a meeting of Bute Community Council last Wednesday representatives of Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited (CMAL) presented the plan for the project, which will include the removal of the current slipways at both terminals and the construction of new ones.

At Rhubodach, the new slipway will be just north of the existing one while at Colintraive the replacement will take the place of the current slip when it is destroyed.

The project, due to start in June this year, is necessary because the existing slipways will soon become difficult to maintain and keep safe.

Ferry crossings between the north of Bute and the mainland will continue to timetable throughout the project, which is due to finish in summer next year.

The area in front of the new slipway will then be dredged to make it suitable for crossings, and once the ferry has switched to using the new slipway the old one will be demolished in the summer of 2018.

Modernising the slipways at the northern crossing has been part of CMAL’s plans for several years now; it was intended to start the process of replacing the slips at both terminals in 2015.

But initially a lack of funding put the plans on hold, and then the works to improve Wemyss Bay in late 2017 meant the project had to be delayed further so both of Bute’s major ferry routes were not disrupted at the same time.

CMAL will host a public meeting at Colintraive Community Hall on Wednesday, May 3, at 7pm to provide additional information.