The Pier 2018

In Scarinish we live close to the pier.
We have a long standing love of ferries.
(There are no trains or engines on the island!)
So it is natural that we should be drawn to the pier.
But it is not just the ferries, it is a place where people meet.

The Pier, Gott Bay

The ferry and the pier provide a vital link to the Mainland.
In early 2020 the linkspan is due to to be replaced.
This will mean no roll on and roll off facility for a month.
Vehicles will not be able to arrive or depart the island.
In the 21st Century’s we are very dependent on this service.

Stormy conditions as waves lash the pier and overtop the lamp posts

This past year we have been reminded of the power of the sea.
In storms waves have topped the height of the lamp posts.
On occasions the pier itself has suffered storm damage.

Just one example of the power to damage the pier

In February the MV Hebridean Isles was damaged.
The pier can be a dangerous place to work.
Snap back zones are dangerous places.

In galleries mouse-over for captions and double click for larger pictures

In one sense all of life passes through the pier.
It appears to be busy for such a short time in the day.
However, the Office, Pier, the Staff and the ferry are vital to life on Tiree

Island transport firms are good customers.
Foods and goods arrive for the shops.
Livestock arrive and depart by ferry.
People come and go.

The pier lights are on as the MV Clansman leaves with a full compliment of livestock trucks

Babies born on the maInland often arrive on the island by ferry.
Business men and women often arrive and depart by ferry.
Holiday makers and guests mainly come and go this way.
And sadly on occasions the hearse will meet the ferry.

In the hours of darkness the MV Clansman heads out to sea bound directly for Oban

In the winter months there is a ferry five days a week.
In the busy summer months there is a sailing every day.
At the height of the season there are two sailings on a Saturday.
Of course this is all weather permitting and barring technical issues.

Following her overhaul the MV Clansman has been fitted with a rainbow additive in her fuel

When the MV Clansman went for her annual service she was crippled.
When entering the dry dock her propellor and shaft were damaged.
Consequently she was out of service for several months.
This put a strain on much of the ferry network.

It may be towards the end of the summer season but it is going to be a busy ferry

Even in the winter there is a steady stream of traffic.
You can expect extremely busy sailings for:
The Tiree 10k and Half-Marathon
The Tiree Ultra Marathon
The Tiree Music Festival
For the latter there has to be additional sailings.

The CalMac ferries are the main users of the pier.
The MV Clansman is the island’s dedicated ferry.
This year other CalMac ferries have included:
The MV Hebridean Isles
The MV Lord of the Isles
The MV Isle of Mull
The MV Hebrides

The MV Hebrides paid a short visit when the MV Clansman was in dry dock
The Lord of the Isles
The MV Isle of Mull

Occasionally a ship has brought aggregates to the island.
The MV Hebridean Princess has visited several times.
And there has been the occasional tall ship.

The MV Hebridean Princess and the MV Clansman – an unusual sighting for Tiree

The pier is located in Gott Bay.
Sail boards and kites are often to be seen in its waters.
The waters of the bay have several moorings for yachts.
And this year Tiree Sea Tours have left the bay on their trips.

Often the Loganair Twin Otter Plane passes over the pier.
On occasions this coincides with the berthing of the MV Clansman.
Soon eyes will be looking up for another annual flying visitor to the island.

Watch out – He’s on his way!

Thank you to all who work at the island’s pier and pier office.
Thank you to the skipper and all who serve on the MV Clansman.
In all kinds of weather and sea conditions you have served the Isle of Tiree.
Thanks!

The MV Clansman alongside the pier

Postscript
This post was to be a review of 2018.
As it took shape the pier became the focus.
It was a reminder how important the pier is to life on Tiree.

The Pier from the air

This is Life on Tiree.