We always welcome a Letter to the Editor to share with our readers – unsurprisingly they don’t always reflect the views of this publication. If you have something you’d like to share, get in touch and of course, your considered comments are welcome below. This from Mark Lansbury, Newchurch, copied also to Ed Miliband and Nick Clegg. Ed
Dear Mr Andrew Turner,
I’ve had to book a car ferry yesterday in order to take our son back to university at the weekend. While we managed to avoid Wightlink’s dreadful pricing and services, Red Funnel managed to offend us with their punitive and abusive pricing structure. To quote the late Lance Corporal Jones, “Captain Mainwaring, they don’t like it up ’em!” Neither to my wife nor myself.
I was coordinating car ferry transport for our son, my wife and a friend.
40% price rise in less than two hours
At approximately 1208 yesterday afternoon (24 Sept) I checked sailings and pricing for an outbound sailing on 26 Sept, Friday. The 0835 departure displayed a rate of £23.75 with a Red Funnel promo code of TLM20.
After coordinating and getting the responses needed (balancing prices with departure times), I went to book the journey.
At approximately 1340 (about 92 minutes later) Red Funnel had increased the outbound fare at 0835 an abusive 40.6% to £33.40 (up from £23.75)!
Red Funnel’s argument will be along the lines of ‘managing capacity’ which, of course, is maximising profits. It’s an argument that seems to be accepted by some.
Red Funnel’s goal … to empty my bank account
However, let’s look at this from other than a corporate post of view: Looking at it from a human being and a voting British citizen, Red Funnel’s (and WightLink’s) action has one simple goal … that of emptying my bank account as much as possible.
Our ferries – my mistake, the corporation’s ferries – are, in a very real and practical sense, part of the UK’s national road network and should be operated as such.
Part of the road network?
Ferries connecting the Island’s roads to the mainland roads should be operated with this sole purpose as a goal.
They should not be operated in order for the elite to accumulate or transfer wealth from British working citizens to corporations and the elite who benefit from this exploitative behaviour.
I look forward to your solution to this chronic Island problem.
Best regards, Mark Lansbury, Newchurch