Wednesday, 31 March 2010

ClydeLink ferries

Now in service between Renfrew and Yoker, ClydeLink are using these small aluminium ferries on the short crossing between the two communities. They are continuing a tradition of ferry services over the river at this point which can be traced back at least as far as 1710. The development of the service took a major step forward in 1868 when the first steam powered chain ferry was introduced. The service came under the auspices of the Clyde Navigation Trust in 1911, remaining with them when the CNT became part of the Clyde Port Authority in 1966. By the late 1970s, the ferry service was making heavy losses, and in 1984 the vehicular ferry service came to an end. After much deliberation, it was replaced by the two small passenger ferries RENFREW ROSE and YOKER SWAN, built at Ardrossan by William McCrindle and Son, Ltd. More recently, as the two ferries came towards the end of their lives, various options were considered, but withdrawal was inevitable as the service was reportedly making losses of up to £430,000 per annum. Today, ClydeLink, owned by Silvers Marine at Rosneath, stepped into the breech to continue to link Renfrew and Yoker by ferry.