The IOS Council organized a public meeting on St Mary's on transport issues on 16 Apr 2014. Approximately 70 people attended. Key announcements by stakeholders have been the subject of several news items on Scilly Today since.
- IOSC Officer claims route subsidy would deter new airlines opening services.
- Steamship Chief Executive sees no problem financing a Scillonian III replacement.
- Meeting discusses improved transport connections.
- Changes to flights to and from Scilly due to Air Traffic Controller shortage
IOSC Officer claims route subsidy would deter new airlines opening services.
Scilly Today report reported Council Officer Diana Mompoloki warning that potential competitor air operators would be put off if a subsidy was provided to provide a winter ferry service
The new Chief Executive (Mr Theo Leisjer) went on to explain that it would be “impossible” to get a government subsidy to operate transport services to Scilly, because of the high level of service currently offered by the Steamship Company. The public were told that companies were in contact with the IOSC but their names could not be released without breaching commercial confidentiality.
The news item attracted skeptical comments. Read the full story and associated comments here.
Steamship Chief Executive sees no problem financing a Scillonian III replacement.
Scilly Today reported the Chief Executive of the Steamship Company (Mr Rob Goldsmith) , speaking at the Public Meeting on 16 Apr, as saying they’ll have no problems financing a replacement for the Scillonian III. The response was in reply to a question from St Mary’s resident Nick Jenkins. Nick asked the Council’s Chief Executive, Theo Leisjer, whether Scilly could manage without a boat service. He replied "There’ll always be a ferry,” he said, because the Steamship Company makes the majority of their profits through the sea link.
Read the full item here.
Despite Theo Leisjer reported claim that the Steamship Company makes the majority of their profits through the sea link the Company's accounts filed with Companies House indicate otherwise. IOSSCO reported £975,000 in profits on turnover of ~£12.5 million for the year ending 31 March 2013. Notes to the accounts about tonnage tax suggest profits from 'services by sea' were £276,000 or 28% of total profits whilst the turnover from services by sea of £5.2 million represented 41% of total turnover.
It will take years to recover the recent capital investment in the Scillonian refurbishment let alone fund a replacement vessel at commercial lending rates.
IOSSCO, as a limited company, files accounts with Companies House so its capital and available free cash flow to support any borrowing is in the public domain (downloadable for a fee £1).
Meeting discusses improved transport connections.
Scilly Today reports Cornwall Council is working to help tourism in Scilly by encouraging improved mainland travel connections and facilities.
Their Lead Transport Officer, Nigel Blackler, says there needs to be better integration of services and operators should ensure that passengers feel valued.
You can read more here.
Changes to flights to and from Scilly due to Air Traffic Controller shortage.
Scilly Today reports that Skybus has said they’re working with the Council to minimise any flight disruption in the coming weeks, due to a shortage of air traffic controllers at St Mary’s airport.
Last weekend, NATS, the organisation that provides information to pilots, published a list of dates when there would be restricted services at the Council-run facility.
You can read more here.