Meeting papers - 23 January 2023 - Ardrossan Harbour Taskforce


  • Jenny Gilruth MSP - Co Chair – Minister for Transport (MfT)
  • Cllr Marie Burns - Co Chair – North Ayrshire Council (MB)
  • Craig Hatton - Chief Executive – North Ayrshire Council (CH)
  • Kenneth Gibson - MSP (KG)
  • Bill Calderwood - Isle of Arran Ferry Committee - Secretary (BC)
  • Iain Thomson - Isle of Arran Ferry Committee – Chairman (IT)
  • Colin Bradford - Regeneration Manager– North Ayrshire Council (CB)
  • Bruce McClure - Senior Manager, Growth & Investment, North Ayrshire Council (BM)
  • Lewis McIntyre - Peel Ports Group –Managing Director, Port Services (LMcI) via Teams
  • John McCormack - Peel Ports Group – Senior Project Manager (JMc)
  • Robert Morrison - Operations Director, CFL (RM)
  • Finlay MaCrae - Area Manager, CFL (FM)
  • Philip Cordiner - Operational Change Manager, CFL (PC)
  • Ruairidh Campbell - CMAL Liaison Project Manager (RC)
  • Graeme McGinty - CMAL – Project Manager (GMcG)

Transport Scotland officials

  • Chris Wilcock – Head of Ferries Branch
  • Caroline Connelly – Head of Ferries Infrastructure and Secretariat to Task Force
  • Andy Anderson – Ferries Infrastructure Team


  • Pauline Blackshaw - Head of Service Delivery Planning, CFL (CalMac) (PB)
  • Lauren McEwan - Operational Planning Manager– CFL (CalMac) (LMcE)
  • Roddy Macdonald – Director of Ferries - Transport Scotland
  • James Anderson – CMAL
  • Robbie Drummond - CalMac
  • Andy Crossan – CMAL
  • David Torrance - TS – Head of Contracts, Procurement and Projects (DT)
  • Kevin Hobbs – CEO CMAL
  • Russell McCutcheon – NAC – Executive Director

Welcome and Introductions

  • MfT welcomed everyone to the meeting. MfT acknowledged the departure of Karen Yeomans from North Ayrshire Council (NAC) and her work on the project; and welcomed Bruce McClure NAC’s project manager to the project.
  • MfT acknowledged the project remains at the tender design stage noting the technical, legal challenges and frustrations from the communities around delays to delivery.
  • Apologies were conveyed and noted as above.
  • All attendees introduced themselves.

Actions – previous Task Force meetings

23 February 2022 Task Force  

  • Legal/Commercial Agreements - ongoing
  • CalMac – Service Continuity Public Consultation - Completed
  • Marine Works – Technical Query. This will be progressed as part of the tender stage - ongoing

28 June 2022 Task Force

  • Pre-tender exercise outcome report – Completed
  • Communications sub group – NAC Landside Public Consultation communications/sharing of Outcome Report - Completed
  • Landside – parking layout for hauliers – ongoing
  • Troon Timetables – Public Consultation Completed – timetable development ongoing
  • Crew Recruitment – CalMac - ongoing.
  • Troon – passenger facilities (interim operational option) –– Completed
  • Ardrossan Fenders – July 2022 meeting completed. Engagement ongoing between IOAFC, CalMac and PPG
  • Service Reliability – July 2022 meeting completed. Engagement ongoing between IOAFC and CalMac.

Ardrossan Steering Group Update

Legal and Commercial Arrangements

  • Legal/Commercial agreements continue to be progressed with each of the project partners.
  • Mft re-affirmed commitment to delivery of the project however highlighted that due to inflationary pressures across the construction industry, the project estimated cost has doubled. This is similar position with other construction projects across Scottish Government however project partners will look to review costs subject to the challenging position on funding and affordability pressures.
  • Project partners instructed by Mft to continue to work at pace and to expedite progress to full tender stage as soon as possible.

Technical Sub Groups Update

Each of the sub groups provided an update:

  • Landside Infrastructure – challenges acknowledged due to increase in project estimated cost. NAC officials will continue to work with project partners to review and refine these where possible. Terminal design updated to reflect feedback from Public Consultation, related to stair width and discussions ongoing regarding out of hours provision for hauliers..
  • IOAFC – continue to represent community interests and engage with project partners on project workstreams. Request for more regular and detailed communications and engagement with the Project partners. Speedy progress on delivery of project is of paramount importance to the community.
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) –fabrication of the tank is ongoing. Tank will be stored prior to installation..
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Supply – continues to be progressed by CalMac
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) – HSE/Consents approval. Workstream requirements continue to be discussed and progressed with PPG, CalMac and CMAL.
  • Service Continuity Planning – public consultation completed in 2022 with report published. Timetable development continues with Ministerial approval required early 2023.
  • Marine Works – PPG continues to engage with project partners on programme and to progress completion of tender stage. The programme includes 6 months from issue of tender invite to tender evaluation and completed with an expected 2 year construction period thereafter.

Vessel Update

  • Vessel delivery remains within period of March to May 2023
  • CalMac familiarisation training undertaken thereafter and deployment of vessel to the route.
  • LNG sensor due to be delivered in July 2023. Discussion around delivery, fitting and scheduling of vessel dry dock.
  • Crew Training has commenced and is ongoing.

Troon Infrastructure Project - Update

  • Temporary terminal building delivered to site in December 2022 with fit out works being undertaken.
  • Consents/engagement regarding sewage discharge treatment with SEPA and South Ayrshire Council is ongoing. Various options being considered.
  • Stakeholder visit to site (IOAFC) being arranged via working group.
  • Completion of all landside infrastructure (including gangway) expected by Spring 2023

Next Steps

  • Progress outstanding Actions from Task Force Meetings of 23 February and 28 June 2022 as outlined above.
  • Completion of tender stage – to be expedited by project partners.
  • Progress Actions from today’s Task Force Meeting – 23 January 2023
  • Mft instructed that a Task Force be scheduled for March 2023 taking account of lack of project progress.


  • Tender progress – all partners to expedite works to move to full tender stage as early as possible.
  • Task Force – to reconvene in March 2023 and July 2023: TS/Mft Private office to arrange.
  • Steering Group Meetings – PPG to arrange.
  • Terminal Building – purchase option – NAC
  • Troon stakeholder visits to be arranged – TS
  • Troon – Ministerial visit to be arranged – TS
  • Communications – to improve these, update & issue Q&A and engage more with IOAFC on project matters – TS/project partners
  • Vessel Deployment – CMAL/TS/CalMac to provide clarity on vessel deployment (including crew familiarisation) & LNG sensors to Minister. 
  • Vessel Deployment – TS update IOAFC on timeline to ensure continuity of service once MVGS is deployed

Any other business

  • Vessel deployment to route queried by NAC. This is expected to be Summer 2023 taking account of delivery and crew familiarisation training by the operator..

Date of next meeting

  • Date of next meeting to be scheduled in March 2023 and thereafter July 2023

Published Date 23 Mar 2023 Type Mode of transport Topic