Wow, this is one long thread!
Couldn't help notice the increase in Cabin Ribs in the Scilly Isles this year.
Last year their was just one, owned by someone on Tresco I think? When the fog sets in in the summer months and the aircraft/helicopters are grounded, they occassionally use it as a high speed alternative to the Scillonian III ferry, for them 'as can afford it! A family friend coming over to join us, hitched a lift with a family from Chelsea who paid £1200 to go Penzance to St. Marys, for six pax, not including their unused tickets on the Skybus aircraft. He explained £200 quid was too much for him and he'd wait for the skies to clear and fly, but they said 'don't worry, come anyway'. (Some people have all the luck!)
Not surprisingly this year, other boatmen on the island have picked up on this, and I saw at least three more cabin ribs this year, including the one pictured here, The Wizard, owned by the St. Mary's boatmen association. Competiton has brought down the price, but its still £1000 to do a Penzance charter. When not doing that they run an inter island service as an alternative to the old open grockel boats and they've recently started doing "fun rides". Having watched them perform stunts usually reserved for a jet ski, I was very impressed with the way the ribs handled.
Clearly the boatmen think cabin ribs are the way ahead.