Speaking just before the first sailing of the new pilot ferry service between Lochboisdale and Mallaig, SNP MP for Na h-Eileanan an Iar, Angus MacNeil said:

“This service will run twice daily in the winter on Tuesdays and Saturdays between Lochboisdale and Mallaig with adjustments being made on the lunchtime Sound of Barra sailings to make sure even more people can use the service.

“We are grateful to Shiel Buses of Lochaber who have worked with us and agreed a timetable to meet the ferry.

“Personally, I had hoped to be on the first sailing but as there is a debate at Westminster on the bedroom tax, it’s the old problem of struggling to be in two places at once.  I would encourage people to use these sailings and be aware of the bus connections, as use of both will maintain both.

On a final note, this winter sees the Southern Hebrides having their best connections ever to the mainland.  Castlebay has five direct sailings to Oban, Lochboisdale has five in-direct sailings to Oban and four direct to Mallaig with two returns possible to the mainland on Tuesdays and Saturdays.  This is an unprecedented level of ferry connections to the mainland in the winter for this part of the world and I am pleased to have been heavily involved in its establishment.”