No extra ferries for Bute Highland Games, says CalMac

ROTHESAY’s ferry link with Wemyss Bay will operate to a normal timetable for Bute Highland Games this Saturday, August 18.

In the past additional services have been provided to cope with the extra traffic on Games day, but a Caledonian MacBrayne spokesperson said the company had examined the vehicle and passenger numbers from the corresponding day in 2011 and believed that the two existing vessels, MVs Bute and Argyle, could cope with anticipated traffic levels.

Both vessels are capable of carrying up to 450 passengers and the equivalent of 60 cars per sailing.

This Saturday’s Rothesay-Wemyss Bay timetable is as follows:

Rothesay dep 0700, 0800, 0845, 0930, 1010, 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400, 1500, 1600, 1645, 1730, 1815, 1900, 1945 and 2110.

Wemyss Bay dep 0800, 0845, 0925, 1015, 1100, 1200, 1305, 1405, 1500, 1600, 1645, 1730, 1815, 1900, 1945, 2045 and 2200.

In addition the Rhubodach-Colintraive service operates every 30 minutes on Saturday, leaving Colintraive at 00 and 30 minutes past each hour and leaving Rhubodach at 10 and 40 minutes past the hour.

The last sailings on the Kyles route are at 2055 from Colintraive and 2100 from Rhubodach.

Last year the former Rothesay ferry MV Saturn, operated two additional return trips on the morning of the Bute Highland Games and two in the evening, but the company’s last ‘streaker’ was laid up at Rosneath in the Gare Loch at the end of August 2011, after providing additional tonnage for last year’s Cowal Highland Gathering, and is no longer listed in the Fleet section of the CalMac website.

Extra services have also been provided on past Bute Games days by the passenger-only catamaran Ali Cat, but that vessel now operates full-time for Argyll Ferries on the Gourock-Dunoon route alongside the Argyll Flyer.