Perhaps the time is right for a radical rethink of what the Corran Ferry is and what it represents.
One can readily imagine Highland Council acquiring the services of some overpaid consultant to produce a report on enhancing the Highland Capital, Inverness.
Doing what all good consultants do and pinch from other sources, said consultant would use words like; ‘iconic’, ‘gateway’, ‘opportunity’ or maybe even ‘sustainable economic growth’.
Well, here’s a radical thought; I suggest that Highland Council doesn’t engage the services of a £800 a day consultant but rather they reflect on what they already have.
Corran Ferry could and should be promoted as an ‘iconic gateway to Ardnamurchan’. The ferry should be regarded as providing Highland Council with the opportunity it purports to see to assist in ensuring sustainable economic growth to the Ardnamurchan peninsula
No Highland Councillor, not even an Inverness based one, would ever suggest that the prospects for North West Sutherland would be anything other than damaged by placing a toll on the road at Lairg and the same should apply to Corran Ferry.
Attitudes matter and I fear that Lochaber is out of sight and out of mind for most Councillors other than the local ones who continually fight a valiant rear-guard action.
Rather than an encumbrance to be hived off to the even more remote Transport Scotland, how about some fresh thinking from Highland Council.
I suggest there’s a collective clearing of minds of selective quoting from so-called ‘legal advice’ on the European Union’s rules. I suspect that the bureaucrats in Brussels, much as Councillors in the north, know little of and care even less about the Corran Ferry so, let’s do what others would do and simply ‘go for it!’.
Remove the fares completely – treat that small stretch of water like a road. A road to enhancing the long neglected Ardnamurchan community.
If this long-standing ‘issue’ shows one thing it shows that the ‘local government’ is anything but local, rather it’s the far-off bean-counters determining major social policy.
Time for a change of attitude. Time for a change to local government structures . Time to drop the fares on the Corran Ferry. Time to regenerate and repopulate Ardnamurchan.