SEVERAL hundred people are being held on boats in the Solent after a build-up of mud in car parks near the Isle of Wight Festival caused lengthy delays.
The mud has caused gridlock from the festival site to Wightlink Ferry’s port at Fishbourne.
The problem means Wightlink has had problems getting cars off ferries arriving on the island.
As a result the Portsmouth to Fishbourne ferry service has been delayed by two to three hours.
Three boats with about 600 people on board were being held in the Solent as ferry operator Wightlink waits for the traffic to clear to enable it to discharge passengers at Fishbourne.
A Wightlink spokeswoman said tonight: “We have about a couple of hundred people on each boat. They are fine, and there are crew and food on board.
‘We can’t do anything else with them until we can get into port to unload. At the moment we are in the lap of the Gods with the Isle of Wight Festival.
‘As soon as the berth is free they will be able to unload, but we just don’t know when that will be. It has nothing to do with us, and it’s not a problem caused by us.’
Emergency traffic plans have been implemented in Portsmouth, in which passengers are marshalled to Southsea Common to await a sailing, and some passengers have been diverted to Lymington in an attempt to ease congestion.