Waitrose tell OnTheWight about importance of ‘frequent and reliable’ floating bridge service

The high-end supermarket has been quietly observing the problems with the floating bridge service but now talk about the importance of safeguarding local businesses.

waitrose trollies

When Waitrose chose to locate their only Isle of Wight branch in East Cowes, it’s likely their decision was based on a “frequent and reliable service” from the Cowes floating bridge. It’s fair to say that a good proportion of their trade would come from residents living across the River Medina in Cowes.

A catalogue of failures
As has been comprehensively documented through OnTheWight over the last 12+ months, the failures of Floating Bridge 6, have impacted heavily on many businesses in East Cowes, including Waitrose.

The high-end supermarket – which has been quietly observing the problems with the floating bridge service over the last 12+ months – has now broken its silence.

Waitrose: “Important that a solution is found”
Waitrose branch manager, Dan Olive, made clear how important the company feels it is that a “solution is found to maintain a frequent and reliable service”.

Speaking to OnTheWight, he said,

“The floating bridge plays a significant role in bringing trade to East Cowes, so it’s important that a solution is found to maintain a frequent and reliable service, which will avoid further uncertainty and help safeguard local businesses.”

Concerns to Solent LEP
On Monday, the Floating Bridge Stakeholders Group – which includes many of the businesses in East Cowes – sent their concerns to the head of the Solent LEP.

They are calling for a meeting with the funder of the new floating bridge.

Image: sean_hickin under CC BY 2.0

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Tuesday, 20th February, 2018 2:03pm


ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2g3e

Filed under: Business, Cowes, East Cowes, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Retail, Top story

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

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8 Comments on "Waitrose tell OnTheWight about importance of ‘frequent and reliable’ floating bridge service"

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Let’s now see how much contempt Dave Stewart can heap on this business. He has ignored the small businesses. Loss of business could make them decide to pull out, endangering jobs and other businesses in East Cowes.


Small businesses shouldn’t feel victimised – Call me Dave ignores everyone except Central Office.

I had the pleasure of using the Itchen bridge yesterday, and the thought I had was, wouldn’t it be marvellous if someone on the IW had the vision to bring something like this to the island, to cross the Medina. It would solve the Cowes/East Cowes vehicle traffic problem, and ease the Newport congestion problem, and dare I say the floating bridge problem, as only a foot… Read more »

Rumour is spreading that every business is in line for a £10,000 compensation package time will tell.


Sally, is this your opinion? Wasn’t clear on the first paragraph, or whose quote you are putting in? Be interesting if that was from the mouth of Waitrose representatives


I always felt this “high end supermarket” made a huge error in choosing East Cowes. (Not because there is anything wrong with East Cowes) Waitrose really needed to be sited nearer Seaview or Bembridge so perhaps on the outskirts of Ryde or at the last resort – nearer Newport.

Will the Leader of the Isle of Wight Council now listen to Mr Dan Olive and finally understand the amount of damage he and his Officers have inflicted upon local businesses and people in East and West Cowes? Will the Scrutiny Committee be allowed to undertake its statutory role and investigate the awful procurement process of the Floating Bridge? Will the SLEP awaken and demand answers regarding… Read more »