Freight service brought forward to begin today

Thursday 2nd May 2013

Orkney open for business for passengers and freight

Following alterations carried out over the last couple of days to the Queen Elizabeth berth at Scrabster Harbour, and the subsequent successful testing of the facility, Serco NorthLink Ferries can confirm that freight services will operate from today.

It was announced yesterday that a twice daily freight services between Scrabster and Stromness would begin on Friday.  However, this can now be brought forward with the first sailing from Stromness at 1600 today (2 May).

Serco NorthLink Ferries’ MV Helliar has been brought in to operation on the Scrabster to Stromness route to provide regular freight travel between Orkney and Caithness while MV Hamnavoe has been withdrawn for urgent repairs.

Stuart Garrett, managing director at Serco NorthLink Ferries, said: “I’d like to thank all contractors who have worked through the night to make the berth accessible for the freight vessel.  I’m pleased that we can begin operations slightly sooner than we had originally hoped.

“This service ensures that businesses can continue to move goods between Orkney and the north of mainland Scotland.  Serco NorthLink Ferries has consulted with local hauliers over the last few days and they are satisfied that the new freight timetable will meet their requirements.

“Despite the withdrawal of the Hamnavoe Orkney remains open for business.  We are now satisfied that both freight and passengers can be fully accommodated on the alternative services that have been put in place by us and with the help of other operators.  We will continue to work with customers to help them access these alternative routes.”

MV Helliar timetable: