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Old 19 November 2009, 14:12   #1
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New Firth Of Forth Hovercraft

The hovercraft which is to provide a crossing in the Forth has just secured 14 million funding. The operator, Stagecoach, has teamed up with hovercraft manufacturer, the Bland Group to go half and half with the project.

The hovercraft underwent trials in the summer of 2007, carrying over 32,000 passengers across the Forth from Kirckaldy to Portobello. The operators hope to carry up to 870,000 each year, with two crossings every 25 minutes, considerably lowering the Forth Road Bridge traffic.

Look forward to seeing it out on the water. I imagine it will be a huge beast of a thing.
I wonder if i can get out on the water on my boat before it can?
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Old 19 November 2009, 14:41   #2
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Great idea I love hovercraft BUT - I bet they will only be viable with public funding. And as there is already a bridge there what's the point?

Maybe I should get a few million in grants to reopen the Severn Ferry???
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Old 19 November 2009, 14:52   #3
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Great idea I love hovercraft
I'll sell you one of mine, they are so high maintenance its unreal !!!!
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Old 19 November 2009, 15:03   #4
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Great idea I love hovercraft BUT - I bet they will only be viable with public funding. And as there is already a bridge there what's the point?

Maybe I should get a few million in grants to reopen the Severn Ferry???
there isn't a bridge from Kirkaldy to Portobello. Thats a road trip (with poor public transport options) which must be about 30 miles, including crossing a congested city centre, and its probably an hour long trip. I assume that the hovercraft is more like 20-30 minutes?

The viability without public funding, may depend on the level of tolls on the new bridge (after 2016)... people regularly making the journey would be commuting to Edinburgh. Parking is a major issue in Edinburgh. Depending on your car it would cost £5-10 a day in petrol; would be another £5-10 depending where you park and I have heard suggestions that the new bridge will have a £5 toll...

...however since the new bridge will have no additional vehicle capacity (beyond the level actually experienced in 2006) it will be 10 years out of date when it is finished and in need of any way they can find to reduce traffic!
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Old 19 November 2009, 17:28   #5
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I think it should go ahead - It would make crossing the forth a LOT more exciting
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Old 20 November 2009, 08:12   #6
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I think it should go ahead - It would make crossing the forth a LOT more exciting
Untill it breaks!!!

Just think of Forth Nav - There going to have a more joyfull time than they do already - Anybody think to ask them wat they thought of it? ? ?
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Old 20 November 2009, 11:16   #7
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I ' think' the IOW hover service manages without public funding - but I 'think' its pretty damn close as to if its profitable.
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Old 20 November 2009, 14:24   #8
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Just think of Forth Nav - There going to have a more joyfull time than they do already - Anybody think to ask them wat they thought of it? ? ?
There's a lot of information here: http://www.sestran.gov.uk/files/BACK...0Collation.pdf
about the trials / feasibility study. Forth Ports were part of the group that organised the trial... so I think its safe to assume they are in favour (or at least neutral!).

I guess from the point of view of the VTS staff it is good for them - without complicated navigation / ship movements to manage they don't have a job.
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Old 20 November 2009, 14:44   #9
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Just think of Forth Nav - There going to have a more joyfull time than they do already - Anybody think to ask them wat they thought of it? ? ?
I would say that a fast craft running across the shipping lanes where the forth is quite wide, running to a known time table would be the least of their worries...
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Old 20 November 2009, 15:11   #10
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Kirkcaldy to Portobello driving takes about an hour and as long as the public transport is set up at either end would be good for shopping in Edinburgh and something different for the kids.
20 mins back on the hovercraft and 10mins drive back home seems a great idea.
Taking the Phantom across to North Berwick takes about 10-15 mins so the crossing at portobello must be about 10 -15 miles slightly narrower there.


gaZ
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