Ferry News

‘Sad day’ as CalMac call time on faithful servant MV Raasay

MV Raasay, one of ferry operator CalMac’s longest serving vessels, has been retired from west coast service with an unblemished record.

She served the Sconser to Raasay route for 21 years from her launch in 1976 until increased timber traffic from the island made her obsolete.

MV Raasay
Gordon Law and Stuart Craig of the Clyde River Steamer Club joined CalMac’s small vessel technical superintendent, Jonathan Davies, for a last look around the vessel Images courtesy of CalMac Ferries

Raasay then became one of the fleet’s relief vessels until being pressed back into regular service again in 2003 as the winter ferry serving Kilchoan-Tobermory.

She is the last of eight “Island class” ferries launched and is capable of carrying seven cars and up to 75 passengers.

The vessels transformed services for CalMac, opening up a new route to Arran, two additional routes to Mull and provided a safe and reliable link from Skye to Raasay. Being virtually interchangeable, they greatly increased the flexibility of the fleet.

Jonathan Davies, CalMac’s small vessel technical superintendent, said: “The Raasay has been an excellent servant over the years and it always sad to see a vessel with so much history with the company moving on.

MV Raasay

“Her excellent sea keeping properties meant that in 21 years serving on the Raasay route she never missed a day’s service.”

CalMac operates a fleet of 33 vessels serving 27 island and remote mainland communities across the west coast. They are the UK’s largest ferry company last year carrying more than 1.4 million passengers and 1.1 million vehicles.

MV Raasay has now been handed back to owner Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd (CMAL) who are expected to announce a buyer for the vessel shortly.

Posted on 21st March 2018 at 10:27 am in Ferry Operators | Caledonian-MacBrayne | Ferry News |

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