2. RESEARCH METHODS
2.1. Chapter 2 sets out the existing position. First, it describes the main characteristics of the island of Kerrera. It then covers transportation-road provision on the island and the various ferry services that currently operate. Finally, it discusses recent moves by Transport Scotland to maintain the existing ferry services while longer-term options are considered
2.2. Consultations were held with 24 Kerrera residents, predominantly those resident on the isle, but also those who are based elsewhere but who spend some time during the year on Kerrera. These were conducted either by face-to-face interview or by telephone. The main issues covered were:
- Life on Kerrera-benefits and challenges.
- What would you like to see different in the future? How would this change affect you personally, your family and Kerrera as a whole?
- How will this change come about?
- How often and for what reasons does anyone in your household move between the north and middle/south end of Kerrera?
- How often and for what reasons does anyone in your household travel to the mainland?
- Views on the present ferry services.
- What is required from a ferry service in the future.
- Make-up of household.
2.3. The following stakeholders were consulted by telephone:
- Argyll and Bute Council.
- Dunollie Estate.
- Kerrera Ferry Limited.
- NHS Highland.
- Oban Marina & Yacht Services Ltd.
- Scottish Ambulance Service.
2.4. Arch Henderson visited Kerrera to inspect the road, ferry-related and other marine shore infrastructure. The results of this inspection are reported at Appendix A.
2.5. A range of existing documents were reviewed. This informed our review of the existing position as well as the subsequent identification and appraisal of longer-term options. The main documents were:
- Community Agreement (Kerrera Ferry Ltd).
- Kerrera Community Development Plan 2008-2028 (Isle of Kerrera Development Trust).
- Kerrera Ferry Service Provision (Kerrera Ferry Ltd).
- Kerrera Scoping Study 2001 (University of Strathclyde-CADISPA Project).
- Kerrera Slipway Study (Haskoning UK Ltd., for Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd).
- Proposed Argyll and Bute Local Development Plan-Written Statement (Argyll and Bute Council).
- Scottish Ferries Review: Routes and Services Methodology Explanatory Paper (Transport Scotland).
2.6. A public meeting was held on Kerrera in early February 2013. This was also attended by Transport Scotland and Argyll and Bute Council. At the meeting we presented our research findings, the options identified and our initial assessment of them. Feedback and comment from the meeting was fed into the options appraisal included in this report.
2.7. Transport Scotland have made grant funding available for the continued operation of the vehicle ferry service in the short term. This has resulted in changes to some fares and the timetable, and to certain other aspects. These changes are expected to be introduced in March 2013. Given the timescale for our research some of the analysis in this report reflects the position that existed before these changes to the vehicle ferry service were agreed and introduced.