1.1. The island of Kerrera has a number of ferry services. There are, however, some concerns that they do not meet the needs of the islanders; and anecdotally they are not commercial and therefore not sustainable in the medium term. Transport Scotland, working alongside the current ferry operators, the island residents and Argyll and Bute Council, are putting in place measures to ensure that the ferry services continue to operate in the short term. This includes some enhancements to existing provision.
1.2. There remains the issue of the most appropriate provision of ferry services to Kerrera in the longer term (i.e. more than two years hence). Therefore, Transport Scotland, along with Argyll and Bute Council, commissioned this research to identify and assess longer term options for ferry provision.
1.3. The level of work required was akin to pre-appraisal STAG and part 1 STAG. Thus, it was to cover:
- Analysis of problems and opportunities.
- Objective setting.
- Option generation, sifting and development.
- Assessment of options.
1.4. Within this the study brief identified specific issues that should be addressed:
- A linking road, consideration of what standard of road would be appropriate for the island, including what standard would allow the road to be adopted by Argyll and Bute.
- Where a sustainable, subsidised ferry service should be located.
- The requirement for landing stages at the south end of the island.
- Car parking requirements.
- Implications for infrastructure (including slipways, others such as roads, etc.). This should include infrastructure on Kerrera and on the mainland.
- Access arrangements (such as access to the current vehicle ferry slips for other ferry/transport providers).
- An analysis of the development potential of the island with regard to the content of the Argyll and Bute Development Plan and with the Kerrera Community Plan that reflects local expectations.