Customer Update - Port Ellen Terminal Development project
Update 17 November 2023
As part of the Port Ellen Terminal Development project, we're pleased to confirm that CMAL will complete their programme of ground investigation work as planned on Friday 17 November 2023. This means that our ferry service to/from Port Ellen will resume as planned from Saturday 18 November.
With the reinstatement of services from Port Ellen, the taxi service which was in place to support foot passengers travelling between Port Ellen and Port Askaig will end in line with the resumption of ferry services to/from Port Ellen on Saturday 18 November.
We also communicated recently that preparatory site work has now begun at Kennacraig, ahead of infrastructure upgrades at the port in preparation for the arrival of MV Isle of Islay and MV Loch Indaal in the future. We will keep you informed about the effect of these works in the coming weeks in our New Islay Vessel Port Enabling Works customer update.
29 August 2023
As previously announced in July by CMAL (Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited), the first phase to develop Port Ellen Terminal began on 21 August for 12 weeks. This means that from 11 September until 17 November, the ferry service to/from Port Ellen will need to be diverted to Port Askaig.
We have provided details for the community, businesses and customers planning travel to/from Islay during this period, below - and further details are available in this dedicated page on our website.
Updated timetables for period from 11 September
During the closure, our timetables will be updated to reflect that Islay services will operate to/from Port Askaig only. Timetables for the period 11 September to 24 September can be viewed here and sailings for this period are now open for reservations.
Due to the separate issue of MV Hebridean Isles being unavailable, the route to/from Islay will operate as a single vessel service from 25 September when MV Isle of Arran departs for annual overhaul. Timetables and bookings for the dates beyond 25 September to 22 October, are now available.
The single vessel service from 25 September, is unrelated to the Port Ellen Terminal development - and relates to vessel deployment and availability. Our teams are continuing to explore further options to support with capacity during this period, including the potential deployment of MV Alfred.
Customers who have confirmed bookings from 11 September to 24 September
If you have a booking from 11 September to 24 September to/from Port Ellen, our team are in the process of contacting customers to confirm your diversion to Port Askaig.
Customers who have confirmed bookings from 25 September
If you have a booking from 25 September which is affected by the separate issue of one of the vessels moving to overhaul and the route moving to a single vessel service, our team will also be in contact with you as soon as we can to provide support and alternative reservation options, where applicable.
Transport between Port Ellen and Port Askaig
If you are a foot passenger with a booking for Port Ellen, and you've been diverted to Port Askaig, public transport options are available. You can plan your onward journey to Port Ellen using the Argyll and Bute website .
If you find there's no suitable connecting bus, please speak with our team at Port Ellen who will be able to assist you.
If you are a foot passenger travelling from Port Ellen and are now sailing from Port Askaig, a port-to-port taxi service will be available to transport you to Port Askaig. However, this service is by request only and you will need to contact Port Ellen by telephone or email by 12noon on the day prior to your journey to guarantee space. Port Ellen office will be open during the closure period: Monday - Sunday between 08:00 - 17:00.
Telephone Port Ellen by calling: 01496 730172 (Option 2).
Further information on service continuity plans
For more details on how we will support customers during this period, and answers to your most common questions. Read our frequently asked questions. We will also continue to keep this dedicated web section up to date with all you need to know about the closure period.
Thank you to our customers for your continued patience.