ANOTHER big step has been taken towards the reinstatement of the Hayling Ferry.
Councillors who sit on the Langstone Harbour Board (LHB) yesterday voted to alter the pontoon fees for the ferry operator.
The licence fee for using the pontoons at Eastney and Hayling had been fixed at around £20,000.
But councillors – made up from Havant and Portsmouth councils – voted to abolish the flat rate fee at a meeting at The Plaza, in Havant.
The fee will now be based on the number of passengers carried, payable monthly in arrears.
The price per passenger will be discounted as passenger volumes increase.
Cllr Jackie Branson, vice-chairwoman of the board, said it would lead to a much-reduced fee for the ferry operator, Baker Trayte Ltd.
She said: ‘The board has been very much the facilitator in getting this going.
‘It’s in everybody’s interest to get the ferry going as quickly as possible.
‘They would wish to get it going by the summer holidays.’
As reported, The Hayling Ferry Trust was launched this week and some £1,000 has already been raised through crowdfunding.
This is on top of the £5,000 that has been given by Virgin billionaire Sir Richard Branson.
Clare Satchwell, from the trust, said: ‘This has been months in the making and it represents a brilliant change that will help enormously.’
A report by the LHB states: ‘It is important that any new ferry operation is resumed as soon as possible to take advantage of the relatively high volumes of summer traffic.
‘Officers will meet with Baker Trayte Ltd to discuss and obtain agreement on the terms of the licence.’
The trust is aiming to raise £40,000 over the next few weeks.
To find out more visit Facebook and search for Hayling Ferry Trust.