Portsmouth MP raises whether improved cross-Solent travel would have impact on economic prosperity or well-being

The MP for Portsmouth South has asked if the Dept for Transport has assessed whether improved transport links between the Isle of Wight and Portsmouth would have an effect on economic prosperity or well-being of Islanders

official portrait of Stephen Morgan MP

Stephen Morgan, the Labour MP for Portsmouth South, who is also Shadow Minister for Local Government (Communities), has raised the issue in Parliament of improving transport links between the Isle of Wight and Portsmouth.

As well as asking what steps the Secretary of State for Transport’s Department have taken to improve transport links between the Portsmouth and the Island, Mr Morgan asked,

What assessment has his Department made of the effect on the (a) economic prosperity (b) well-being of people on the Isle of Wight of improved transport links between the Isle of Wight and Portsmouth?

Freeman: Half-hourly train service to the pier
In a written reply, George Freeman MP, Minister of State (Department for Transport) spoke about the recently-announced £26m for Island Line,

He said,

“The department recently announced a £26 million investment in new trains and track improvements on the Isle of Wight’s Island Line. The improvements will include a new passing loop at Brading, which will help to deliver an even interval half-hourly service to the pier.

“This will allow the train to connect better with local ferry services. This follows a multi-million pound commitment for Network Rail to make improvements to renew Ryde Railway Pier where trains connect with ferries to Portsmouth.”

Freeman: Up to ferry companies to determine
He went on to talk about the ferry services, but said the frequency of services, fares and other matters relating to the services are for the ferry companies to determine. He said,

“The Government of course recognises the importance for local residents and businesses of good quality ferry services between Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight . These locations are linked directly by ferry services provided by Wightlink between Portsmouth and Fishbourne or Ryde as well as hovercraft services operated by Hovertravel between Southsea and Ryde.

“These services are provided on a commercial basis by Wightlink and Hovertravel, without financial support from Government. The frequency of services, fares and other matters relating to the services are for those companies to determine.”

Mr Freeman went on to add,

“The Secretary of State met the hon member for the Isle of Wight (Robert Seeley MP) in August to discuss ferry services between the Island and the mainland generally, including fare levels and service reliability.”

Thursday, 17th October, 2019 5:18pm


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Filed under: Ferry, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Top story, Train, Travel

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5 Comments on "Portsmouth MP raises whether improved cross-Solent travel would have impact on economic prosperity or well-being"

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Perhaps Portsmouth is concerned the increasingly unreliability cross Solent ferry service is resulting in fewer Islander’s travelling to the mainland on shopping trips.

Angela Hewitt
Portsmouth Council are aiming for less air pollution from traffic – Like London – less emissions etc. They have even considered an emissions charge. Better Island rails links to ferries and therefore mainland trains may increase users and less vehicles on car ferries. Also as someone else has commented earlier to get to work in Portsmouth and surrounding towns. Portsmouth, obviously will offer good ,cheap, even free… Read more »
Mark L Francis

Since I have never been a tourist on the IOW, I never took a “Mystery tour”. I believe they went along Beacon Alley & ended up at the Buddle but maybe that was just a rumour. now all the buses seem to end up in Newport.


Great to see the Labour party step in where Bob has failed to deliver, hopefully Julian will grow a pair and join in!


What’s it got to do with him?