• Forum Contest

    Enter here, for a chance to win an Ultimate Boat Bar from Carabarlife!

  • UPDATED INFORMATION & ADVICE - PLEASE READ NOW

    'I didn't know/I wasn't told' will not be a valid defence if you fail to comply and lose your access to the off-topic area, core topic areas, or the entire YBW forum as a result. Full details can be found here, please read before you proceed.

Turntable ferry

westhinder

Well-known member
Joined
15 Feb 2003
Messages
2,143
Location
Belgium
Did the Kyle of Lochalsh to Kyleakin ferry not have a turntable in the late 50s - early 60s?
I was wondering, I have vague memories of a turntable ferry from my first visit to Skye (‘77 I think) and I thought it was Kyle of Lochalsh - Kyleakin.
 

JumbleDuck

Well-known member
Joined
8 Aug 2013
Messages
23,588
Location
SW Scotland
Not quiet the same thing, but the Aust ferry across the River Severn was a turntable ferry, in that the turntable was central to the boat. One drove on to the turntable which then rotated and one drove off into a parking space.
The Saturn - and I think the other streakers, Juno and Jupiter - had a turntable. Cars drove on via a side ramp at Rothesay, were turned on the turntable and then got into position to drive off by the stern ramp at Wemyss Bay. It was only really needed on busy days and for late arrivals, though. The ABC predecessors, Arran, Bute and Cowal, had a lift with a turntable: onto the lift, down, turn to drive onto the car deck, reverse the process to get off.
 

Giblets

Well-known member
Joined
5 Mar 2006
Messages
8,985
Location
Surrey
I was wondering, I have vague memories of a turntable ferry from my first visit to Skye (‘77 I think) and I thought it was Kyle of Lochalsh - Kyleakin.
My reason for thinking that was that, whilst disembarking at Lochalsh on the family's way back home from two weeks on Skye, the guys had not put the timber blocks/ramps down in the right place and dad's 1953 Vauxhall Velox fell off the ramp onto the slipway and broke the o/s/r leaf spring. The ferry operator accepted full responsibility for the incident and we were put up FOC for two days in the Lochalsh Hotel while new springs were bought by train over from Inverness the following day and fitted before we could trundle off home.
 

JumbleDuck

Well-known member
Joined
8 Aug 2013
Messages
23,588
Location
SW Scotland
Is there no longer a turntable ferry at Cromarty?
As far as I can see, the Cromarty Queen had a turntable on the car deck, but is now running the Tanera Mor service, while the Cromarty service is run b the Cromarty Rose, one of the former Renfrew ferries (Renfrew Rose) designed by Ian Nicolson, and has no turntable.
 

ProDave

Well-known member
Joined
5 Sep 2010
Messages
12,322
Location
Alness / Black Isle Northern Scottish Highlands.
Is there no longer a turntable ferry at Cromarty?
It's a lottery from year to year if the service will start up again next year and of so which vessel.

A few years back it was the "Cromarty Queen" that took 4 cars and was bow loaded but had a turntable so you could drive on forwards spin on the turntable and drive off forwards. That vessel got replaced due to "harbour issues" I never heard the full story but I think it used to tie up overnight to the outer structure at Cromarty harbour that was then declared derelect and unsafe, so it was replaced with a smaller 2 car vessel which although it appeared to have a turntable that was never used / did not work, so you had to reverse off up the steep ramp that caused some issues for some people.

I never got to travel on it last year and I await what vessel it might serve up this year.
 

Mark-1

Well-known member
Joined
22 Sep 2008
Messages
3,165
Thanks OP. Been past it, didn't understand the significance.

Nearly didn't view the vid, glad I did.
 

prv

Well-known member
Joined
29 Nov 2009
Messages
37,038
Location
Southampton
But going back to this thread topic, the Skye turntable ferry deals with up to 9 knots cross tide without problems
That‘s because it’s not a chain ferry so can point into the tide instead of taking it on the beam. What’s your point supposed to be?

Pete
 

Ink

Member
Joined
28 Nov 2020
Messages
87
The Saturn - and I think the other streakers, Juno and Jupiter - had a turntable. Cars drove on via a side ramp at Rothesay, were turned on the turntable and then got into position to drive off by the stern ramp at Wemyss Bay. It was only really needed on busy days and for late arrivals, though. The ABC predecessors, Arran, Bute and Cowal, had a lift with a turntable: onto the lift, down, turn to drive onto the car deck, reverse the process to get off.


The streakers all had turntables but were for the Gourock - Dunoon run were all RoRo.

Ink
 

alan_d

Well-known member
Joined
15 Mar 2002
Messages
2,173
Location
Scotland
Did the Kyle of Lochalsh to Kyleakin ferry not have a turntable in the late 50s - early 60s?
I think in that era pretty well all the Highland short-hop ferries were turntable: Strome, Kylesku, Corran, Ballachulish and Kessock as well.
 

penfold

Well-known member
Joined
25 Aug 2003
Messages
4,545
Location
On the Clyde
The streakers all had turntables but were for the Gourock - Dunoon run were all RoRo.

Ink
They must have done away with the turntables at some point as I don't remember them at all, travelling on them on and off from the late 80s onwards.
 

Uricanejack

Well-known member
Joined
22 Oct 2012
Messages
3,601
As far back as I can recall the Kyle of Lochalsh ferry was a bigger ferry landing on the quay with a ramp at ither end. I was on it one day when it got stuck and left high and dray as the tide went out. Fortunately I was on the sailing which managed to get unstuck friends on the next one were stuck.
We rarely took the Ballachaulish ferry, its was about an hour to drive round via Kinlochleven.
I haven’t been through kinlochleven since the bridge opened. 75 or 76?
The Corran Ferry was still turntable until the the early 80s we used to hope it was the big ferry which took 9 cars rather than the small ferry which took 6 until someone pointed out you have to be able to get out of your car and they were both 6 car ferries.

The one we used to take regularly was Colintrive I think back in the early 70s it was a turntable but I could be wrong. If we took the car we always went by Colintrive. Weems Bay to Rothsay we only went as foot passengers.

The old MV Hebrides had lift and turntable for coming alongside the pier in Tarbet. Meanwhile until late 70s the Malaig Armadale Ferry brought cars on by Dericks, Can’t remeber if they were union purchase or swinging. I only ever took it as a foot passenger.

Back in the 60s my first sea going adventure was on the Scalpay Ferry, which I think was a turntable. it would wait for my Dad to arrive for the first sailing on a Tuesday morning. when he did his visits on Scalpay, Occasionally when no school. I would go with him, I would stand on an old orange box in the wheelhouse and Steer while The Skipper and crew would chat with my Dad.
I remember hearing a story where the crew were called out at night to come over for my Dad. By the time he got there. A character had heard about the call out. Had arrived at the pier before my dad, with a bull. The services of which were required on Scalpay.
The crew weren’t to pleased and the Bull had to wait until regular service was resumed.

I liked the old turntable ferries, Grey Wooden Hulls with red wheelhouses. Cant say I miss waiting for them, My dad didn’t mind he would ussualy go for a pint at the hotel, while I waited outside with a packet of crisps. I also would roll the car down the hill as each ferry took its half dozen.
The fact I was only about 12 and had no idea how to drive wasn’t considered an obstacle.
 
Top