Results of Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey revealed

The Pro-link campaign say the survey was completed by just under 5,000 people on and off the Isle of Wight. OnTheWight has the full details.

fl survey results chart 1

The results of a survey on whether there should be fixed link feasibility study have been released.

The survey was commissioned by the Pro-Link group, headed by Carl Feeny and Kevin Price.

The data provided revealed that just under 5,000 people – from the Isle of Wight and mainland – completed the Solent Tunnel survey.

Of those completing the survey, 77.8% believe that alternatives to existing cross-Solent transport should be investigated.

The results
All the raw data has been provided to the media so we have created the tables below to help you make sense of the results.

Jump to the relevant tables:

Further details can be found in the Report at the bottom of the article.

Q3: What is your age group? - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer OptionsResponse PercentResponse Count
Under 20 years old4.7%233
20 - 30 years old17.9%891
30 - 40 years old20.5%1018
40 - 50 years old20.3%1008
50 - 60 years old19.0%946
60 - 70 years old13.3%659
over 70 years old4.3%212

Q4: Are you... - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer OptionsResponse PercentResponse Count
A permanent Island resident.87.7%4356
A mainland resident.12.3%611

Q5: Which are you? - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer OptionsResponse PercentResponse Count
Student studying on mainland3.5%175
Student studying on Isle of Wight3.4%168
Currently Unemployed4.3%216
Employed and living on on Isle of Wight52.5%2605
Employed on Isle of Wight but live and commuting from Mainland0.8%41
Employed and living on Mainland8.9%444
Employed on Mainland but live and commute from Isle of Wight7.6%378
Other (please specify)532

Q6: Do you believe that alternatives to the existing cross Solent transport should be investigated? - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer OptionsResponse PercentResponse Count

Q7: Do you think that it is reasonable for the IOW Council to request an independent FL Study to ascertain the correct information concerning options for future Cross Solent Transport? - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer OptionsResponse PercentResponse Count

Q8: In order of importance (10 most important to 1 least important) please rank the following factors that should be considered as part of feasibility study. Please note that you cannot use the same number twice. - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer Options12345678910Rating AverageResponse Count
Traffic management3524625195095324504705474826445.774967
Social effects3255315786624985385455023903985.404967
Ferry services17924675382992412552673302405384.094967
Types of tunnel8609784983533203052873355344974.754967
Safety in tunnel4746885283913543363293916208565.714967

Q10: At the present time before the study is undertaken, would you consider the prospect of having a road tunnel "Fixed Link" from the Island to the mainland as positive, or negative to the overall future welfare of the Isle of Wight? - IW Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey (2017)

Answer OptionsResponse PercentResponse Count
Please explain why you have answered either Positive or Negative.4218

The Report
Click on the full screen icon to see the larger version.

Friday, 7th April, 2017 9:30am



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

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109 Comments on "Results of Fixed Link Feasibility Study Survey revealed"

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All meaningless. Question 8 was a fix.

So of an Island of 130,000, less than 4000 are interested in a feasibility study. How many people put in multiple replies, who knows?

Nothing to see here, move along.


Perhaps you should go back to school and learn about statistical significance and representative samples.

Too many term-time holidays when you should have been studying, perhaps?


No, I was studying Ivan Pavlov. You?




You should ask for your money back.


And you should stay away from bicycles.


Could be tricky.


People’ll just have to put up with your drooling when they ring their bells, I guess.



I thought you said you were being studied by Ivan Pavlov…

Mason Watch
Yaaaaaaaaawnnn…….. I suppose we are now in for more of “the majority say” propaganda based on the responses of approximately 4% of the population of whom roughly 3% want an “alternative” It’s a fantasy perpetuated by people who have opinions but no facts. Mr Feeney and friends are doing nothing but alienating the Island population with this nonsense which clogs up numerous threads of totally unrelated news.

I refer you to my answer to “Colin”.

Another one confusing a survey with a referendum.


What exactly do they mean by ‘commissioned’? Wasn’t it just a Survey Monkey form they threw together? Are they trying to imply it was a proper study done by an independent company?

Also love all the angry stuff that is ALL IN CAPS and highlighted in red. Totally a professional quality document.

Needless to say, this ‘study’ is completely worthless.


Before I attract the anger of the Mr Feeney and the the Flixers, I of course meant ‘survey’ instead of ‘study’.

I do find this whole approach extremely regrettable. Whatever your views on a fixed link, being fronted by such a half-arsed and aggressive (to the point of bullying) group will do no one any favours whatsoever.

Andrew Garratt

The results are interesting and informative. They provide information about what the people who knew of, and decided to respond to, the survey feel about the issues.

However, are they representative? Market research is backed up by a lot of statistical methodology to cover all sorts of issues – representativeness, question bias, the very many human cognitive biases, and so on.


Colin, I agree.

There was no tick box anywhere where you could respond “Yawn”

Perhaps it would be best if all those dozy types who can’t see beyond those sort of comments were to go back to sleep whilst the rest of us have an intelligent discussion about what is a very important issue, that of cross Solent connectivity.

Geoff lewis

There are lies, dam lies and statistics.
Show me a data set and I can present that data in many different ways to represent any point of view.
You just have to look to Westminster to see this at work.
A skewed and pointless peice of smoke and mirrors.


Pretty clear that there is an appetite for a fixed link to the IW, despite the vocal opposition of the minority.


Errr.. no. there might be an appetite for a feasibility study, which is what this survey was supposed to be about. However it is statistically meaningless and could be completed many times by the same person with even a small amount of technical ability.


Errr, yes.

It is certainly not statistically meaningless.

A 4.5% sample of an entire population is quite significant.

And the spread of data suggests that little “fixing” took place (if any)

How do you know that all respondents are Islanders? Was it limited to just Islanders – or could anyone from anywhere do it? That 4.5% of the ‘entire population’ is not provable. How do you know that each entry is from a unique individual? The questions were not written in an unbiased way. How can the data ‘suggest’ it hasn’t been fixed? It was not independent –… Read more »

If you had bothered to read the article, you would have noted that 4356 respondents were IW residents (87.7%) while 611 (12.3%) were mainland residents.

The survey *is* credible, and you blindly stating it isn’t has no credence at all.

You sound rather like Donald Trump, squealing “fake news” and “fixed” when things don’t go your way.

Grow up.


What the minority of 4% of the islands population it means nothing


4% is a statistically significant sample.

It means quite a lot.


4% of 5000 people is not a significant statistically out of a population of 130000 it is complete nonsense. But if you want to carry on deluding yourself carry on

Errm, yes it is. Using the figures in the survey for a confidence level of 95% (that the result of 77% want an investigation into the feasibility of a fixed link), for a sample size of 5000 from a population of 140000, the confidence interval is 1.5 In other words, between 75.5% and 78.5% of the *actual* population would agree. So, yes, the result *is* extremely statistically… Read more »
Ok fair enough but how do you know how many of the people who completed the survey done it more than once I personally filled it in 3 times which I bet I was not the only one which then does make it pointless. For what it is worth I am all for a feasibility study to be done I was just testing the survey to see… Read more »

OK, Richard.

You admit to trying to rig the survey against a Fixed Link and then, when it turns out that, despite your efforts, the opinion is strongly in favour, you cry “fixed” the other way?


If you read my last comment I don’t think I was the only one who filled it in more than once people have admitted to filling it in more than once on previous stories it is not about crying fix it is reality this survey is worthless and does not represent the majority of islands population. Get a proper feasibility study done and I will then start… Read more »

When you only get a little over 3% of the Island population responding to this survey it should tell you 97% are not interested. A survey carried out by people who are in favour of a fixed link and heavily promoted on their Facebook group is always going to be biased.

The poll carried out at Ryde Academy shows a different story 57% against and 43% for.

Sorry for you anti-linkers. The sample size was statistically significant and the data spread suggests it is genuine. You can bleat all you like, but this suggests, very strongly, that you are in the minority, and a fairly small minority, at that. And what was Ryde Academy’s sample size? What were the questions, what was the spread of respondents? I can see all of these things for… Read more »

There were 484 students in Ryde Academy’s sample size done over a week reported in the CP along side their report on Carl Feeney’s study. Isn’t this fixed link supposed to be for our children and their children and from the Ryde Academy’s survey they don’t want one.


So you present a survey based on an age range of, what? 11 to 18?

And even then 43% were in favour.

Seriously? Is that the best you can do?


I had nothing what so ever to do with the Ryde Academy’s survey I am only saying things are often not as clear as some (like you) portray. A survey carried out by students with no real agenda is probably more representative than one carried out by the pro group for the pro group after all the person who set the survey is pro link.


Sorry, but you are 100% wrong. A survey of 484 11 to 18 year old students is in no way representative of anything other than the views of 11 to 18 year old students.

It doesn’t matter how much you twist and turn, the pro-link survey *is* significant.


The only thing you can be sure of with statistics is that you’ll never know the truth.


Statistics don’t convey truth, just probability.

And the probability, with a high degree of confidence, is that more people are in favour of a fixed link than not.


Keyboard warriors at it again, if it is meaningless to you why do you continue to negatively comment on anything FL related. If it’s no threat to you then don’t worry about it, and yes there is a alot of people on the island that want a FL despite the survey.


And if a FL is built (more likely now) and they don’t like it, they can….

wait for it….


here it comes….



(Not so nice when the boot’s on the other foot, is it?)

Mason Watch
As a daily commuter of 27 years and counting this is not meaningless but fails to look at reality. On a majority of days the road network in the Solent area is clogged and to see the junction of the M275 and M27 clear is rare. I would say that this whole situation is very much like a two Michelin star meal being promoted when the reality… Read more »

**”The idea is admirable but in the real world it’s just an irrelevance”***

Not to the 80% of those who bothered to express an opinion it isn’t.

Wise words

How about if you don’t want to pay for the ferry you MOVE and give us all some peace and quiet.


I would have taken part in the survey if I had known about it. I wonder how many other people were unaware of it?

With all due respect Mason Watch you still have to use the motorway and trunk roads to get to the ferry terminals, in fact a direct link to the M27 will have a big role to play in relieving both Portsmouth and Southampton city centres of the congestion caused by the location of the ferry terminals. With a direct link to the M27 both the M271 &… Read more »
Mason Watch
And where is this exit coming out on the mainland? The roads by Hedgend are constantly at a standstill. My point was that the junction was an issue due to traffic on the M27. It’s that which is the issue. This is the constant problem, no one who supports the link has yet to come up with any coherent explanation of where and how it would work… Read more »

Mason Watch. To reiterate, the ferry traffic already uses the M27, the benefit is not having to cause congestion in Portsmouth and Southampton City centres.

Where the new link roads connect to will be a matter for the experts at the DfT to decide so your question is better addressed to them.

Let us all know what their response is please.

Some one with common sense
You have a very long wait for dft to decide . You have more chance of a fixed link to France than to mainland England. I’ve enjoyed past 2 years watching idiots talking get about fl. You get less than 5000 people voted.. you are meant to have that amount in your group alone. However you say it’s a good result REALLY are you that stupid half… Read more »
Richard Lee Ridley

You only have to look at the picture portraying what a fixed link will look like in the IWCP to realise its all irrelevant.
What I would like to know, is how far that dual carriage way being portrayed will be progressesing as one here on the Island? Before meeting B and A roads!


I’d guess that it will link into the racecourse roundabout at some point, but really this is a question for the DfT.

No doubt in a few years time when the link road has been built all these matters will be resolved one way or another.

Some one with common sense

It’s 2017 not 2517. When it’s built April 1st is over


Gosh! I’m really suprised by the really low ‘turn out’

Richard Lee Ridley


Let’s just build the fixed link and hope for the best when it comes to the extra congestion it will bring, and that it doesn’t bring any negatives to ruin islanders everyday lives.


Everyone knows that you can make figures say whatever you like.

Until there is a 100% island resident referendum on whether people want a ….. …. the whole survey and this article means nothing.


Page 12 of the IWCP, it’s really up there with importance and interest.


As it is now obvious that the majority want a fixed link and government infrastructure funds are plentiful the big question is which isolated island are those opposed to a fixed link going to move to?

St.Kilda or the Shetlands perhaps? or may be somewhere even more isolated like the Falklands?



Have you got a link where those funds are supposedly available? Could you post it on here please.
The majority, hmmm, I would say this would make the survey front page news!!
I won’t have to move.



The majority!, this survey should be front page news on the local rag, and be all over our local radio station then, your stickers should be on nearly every house and car on the Island.
I won’t have to move..

Surveys are fine, you get what you ask for. It would be equally interesting to ask all of us overners why we came here. Mostly i believe it was because it is an island, and to “get away from it all”. One of the questions could have asked if the responder was an overner. As for tunnels and bridges we use the M25 Dart Crossing fairly often.… Read more »
Thank you chippy2. My family have been here since the 1700,s and are all very anti a fixed link. It is good to read a view from a seemingly newcomer to our wonderful island. We are an island (thank goodness)and physically adjoining to the mainland is not desirable, practical or, thank goodness, affordable. Those proposing bridges and tunnels are living in cloud cuckoo land! The only proposed… Read more »
I suspect, Billy B you are not a pensioner. As a volunteer driver for the aged – as you will be one day – ask an 8o year old suffering from cancer what’s it’s like having to get up at 6.30am to catch a ferry, an hour’s journey followed by a 30 min drive to Southampton hospital plus return journey. Having finally arrived home at 6.30pm, knackered,… Read more »

Chris, well done for the volunteer bit. I am a pensioner, also 80, luckily healthy, after mailand ops, but still prefer to be here. Have you thought that an improved hospital might cost less than a fixed link? The problem there of course is getting the budget transfer from DoT to NHS – it won’t happen. I remain against a fixed link.


The problem is, improvements to the hospital can easily be rolled back in the next round of government cuts.

Undigging a tunnel, not so easy.

I'll Get Flamed
It’s not just about funding! The NHS is increasingly focussing resources in specialist centres of excellence. The reason for this is that they are proven to deliver better treatment. A cardiologist or oncologist working on the Isle of Wight will not see the same number of cases as a specialist centre and will therefore lack the experience and expertise. St Mary’s is simply not big enough to… Read more »
billy b

I do not need to take a more active role “in the campaign against an FL”.
I do not think such a campaign exists, and there is no need for such a campaign in any case.

A fixed link is not necessary, not desirable, and even most certainly not a scheme worthy of investment from whatever source.

I'll Get Flamed

Others disagree and given the lack of sensible argument on your part, our chances of success are growing by the day!

Chris, I am 70 later this year and still in work. Fortunately I am in reasonable good shape! I admire your volunteer aspiration and pray that I will not require your services in the future. However residents of the Channel Islands and the Scilly Isles (and of course there are also the wonderful Northern Islands) choose to live in their own particular “paradises” in the knowledge that… Read more »
I'll Get Flamed
I’m pleased you are in good health Billy B. A very close relative of mine was also still in work, and incredibly fit, at the age of 73 …. when he was diagnosed with cancer! He turned down the most advanced treatment because he couldn’t face travelling to Southampton whilst so unwell. He died at 74. He didn’t “chose” to live here … he was born here… Read more »
My family have been on the IW for (at least) 7 generations, and are mostly strongly in favour of a fixed link, so you can drop the “natives don’t want it” act. There is absolutely no point in the antis putting their fingers in their ears going “la la la, not listening” and claiming their own unsubstantiated opinion as “fact”. The only fact is that this survey… Read more »
I'll Get Flamed

BillyB … I’m wondering … if the ferries are “practical” … why are there so many delays and cancellations … not to mention fires, collapsing mezzanine decks and accidental sewage spillages. All of the above at a time of increasing prices and reduced services.

A FL is infinitely more practical than the outdated and unsustainable ferries.

I'll Get Flamed

PS Billy B … the world has changed a lot since the 1700s! Do you really consider that to be a sensible part of your argument?



I'll Get Flamed

Then please take a more active role in the campaign against a FL. please go out there and spread the word that the Island does not need a FL because your family have lived here since the 1700s.

paul carter
Whether or not there is a genuine support for a fixed link on the Island, it’s irrelevant. Nobody is going to find the money to build either a tunnel or a bridge, both of which would also meet massive environmental opposition. Even if it survived all that, think it through. The crossing charges would have to be comparable to ferries now to recover the investment. And finally… Read more »
Someone else with their head in the sand going “la, la, la, not listening “. If the cost of crossing using the fixed link was the same as the ferries (it won’t be, though ), that would be absolutely fine. 24/7 and no delays would *still* make it preferably to the ferries. And the notion that a company would *raise* prices to stay in business in the… Read more »
I just hope we do get to see a comprehensive feasibility study, to give facts and see off all of the conjecture. Until then, I have to challenge your ‘belief’ that the journey cost would be less than the ferry. Given the billions any link would cost, it is my opinion that the cost per journey would be more than the ferry. Also, your last point about… Read more »

Challenge away.

You will still be wrong.

Simple maths and statistics. Not my fault if you don’t understand.

I'll Get Flamed
Paul … I don’t believe any of us are qualified to decide whether or not anyone will invest in a FL proposal. Before anyone could make a decision there needs to be a proper proposal … before that can happen a lot of other things need to happen … first and foremost a professionally conducted and independent feasibility study. Cynicism on your part is no reason for… Read more »
billy b

Well said Paul,

We do not need a bridge/tunnel. A bridge/tunnel is not viable. Even if it is, who would be daft enough to fund it?

We are an Island; relish it!



Less than 5000 people could be bothered to fill in that very dubious survey.
If it was that high up in people’s priorities, it would of been front page news.

I'll Get Flamed

It was a survey and surveys generally do not get a high response … even when people do care … it’s a sample of the population and the organisers have provided the raw data for scrutiny. At this very early stage it’s what would be expected.

Interesting that he results reflect the e-petition numbers.


Fixing the ferries comes under changing central government policies, that doesn’t come easy or quick.
Just like your trying to do with trying to get councillors who are pro fixed link voted in, how is that going by the way?

I'll Get Flamed
Ah – pretty poor attempt at diverting the argument away from the fact that the campaign to fix the ferries has achieved nothing! Whilst I am a supporter of the FL campaign I am not a member of it so can’t answer your specific question. However, I can say that three years ago anyone supporting a FL on a forum such as this was Flamed. Now, Islanders… Read more »
As much as not even 5000 people of a dubious survey has been nothing but a poor attempt to justify that the majority want it. The fact is, that pro link campaigners are only interested in a road tunnel and nothing else, be it A rail tunnel, or other method, tram for example. Getting the ferries cheaper, by regulating them for example. Getting more services, by regulating… Read more »
I'll Get Flamed

We all have our own views on the best way to solve the problem.

Unfortunately, opponents of a FL keep talking about regulation and making the Island a special case but have achieved nothing to that effect.

Is there actually any organisation of any form (campaign group or political party or ?) actually working to achieve those goals?

IGF If the pro fixed linkers are really about the Island, they should be encompassing and encouraging all ways to possibly solve the Island issues ( though I believe these issues are not unique to us ), not just one, surely to put some eggs in different baskets will improve the chances of success one way or another. I personally don’t see any issues here that I… Read more »
I'll Get Flamed
Richard – the converse argument applies. If you were “really about the Island” you too should be encompassing and encouraging ALL ways to possibly solve the Island issues. Personally, I am not campaigning for a FL – I’m campaigning for a feasibility study so we can understand the true facts. If the study revealed the negatives you forecast I would not support a FL. If the study… Read more »
One thing the anti fixed link people forget is the rate that the Island is becoming populated with all the building going on, in a few years there will be nothing special about the Island. It will become another suburb of Southampton. My wife and I first visited the island in 1986 In the 30 years since the ambience of the place has changed. In time it… Read more »


When have I said I’m the only one that cares?

My alternative suggestions, are there as many negatives involved as with a fixed link?

Will feasibility studies be required?

I hope to see you encouraging them more in the future.

I'll Get Flamed

Richard – as previously asked, is there actually any organisation of any form (campaign group or political party or ?) actually working to achieve your alternative suggestions?

Can you point me at the “regulate the ferries” petition or FB page for me to support?



I’m not aware of any groups.

But that does not make my points any less valid.


If the fixed link campaign says that a fixed link will improve tourism and the economy, my alternatives offer the same outcome, with in my opinion far less risks. So they should be encouraging them, which I haven’t seen them do.

I'll Get Flamed
There are two reasons why I don’t support your alternatives. Firstly, there is nothing to support. You have admitted that there is no group or organisation actively proposing and campaigning for your alternatives. If you believe so strongly, why not form one … why not stand for the Council or as MP? Secondly, I read the newspapers and have seen UK Givernment policy (under Conservative, Labour and… Read more »


So you expect support for your scheme, ( where is the evidence that you are gaining support ? )

But you won’t support others.

I'll Get Flamed

No – I said there is nothing to support – if you believe what you’re saying do something about iit and start a campaign for regulation.


Support has to start somewhere, myself I’m not fussed.. I don’t see any problems that I don’t see anywhere else



I already am doing something about it..when I vote at local and general elections.

But I think you are missing my point..if all that support a fixed link, stating how it would increase tourism and the economy, they would support any idea that may give them that goal, and take it on board..not just dismiss it, especially when these alternatives carry no risks, and therefore no resistance.


I think the fixed link brigade dismiss these alternatives because they are very real alternatives..and they want a fixed link at all costs.

I'll Get Flamed
Real alternatives that no single organisation is actively campaigning for? You criticise FL supporters for not “supporting” your alternatives, yet your own “support” is limited to voting in elections. Not exactly leading by example are you? I don’t want a FL at all costs. I want a feasibility study so that we understand the facts. I have also said very clearly that I will change my position… Read more »

Many people do vote, and then things change.
The alternatives are there..however much you try and downplay them.


And if voting does not change anything…maybe you should try telling that to all the fixed linkers on their website looking for pro fixed linkers candidates for future local councilours.

I'll Get Flamed
That’s exactly the point Richard. The FL campaign has brought together hundreds (possibly thousands) of people who want change, lobbied the Council to secure the release of the previous FL feasibility study, lobbied Government to find out if funding is available and how to go about applying for it, generated awareness, sought our expertise from specialist in tunnelling, lobbied Councillors to ask them to state their views,… Read more »
The pro link campaign is only looking for councillors that are only interested in a fixed link. How about the councillors that want change via central government policy, to gain the same advantages a fixed link will possibly bring? I’m writing to my local councillors asking amongst other questions, what is their stance on regulating the ferries, and getting the Island special status. How many of the… Read more »
I'll Get Flamed
Shock news … pro link campaign only looking for Councillors that are interested in a fixed link … how terrible … I mean that’s like the Labour Party only selecting Councillors who support Labour. Totally unacceptable behaviour! If you and others believe that the answer lies in regulation then form a campaign group … or a political party … or something … and build a case. If… Read more »
And I don’t need to do seeing nothing wrong here that I don’t see anywhere else. And I’m happy here..sorry if that upsets you. But I will speak up if that happiness is risked for a scheme like a fixed link..with it’s many many risks. It’s up to the likes of you and the fixed link crew to convince those in power that we deserve the… Read more »

Sorry I should of said that possibly 5000 people say they want billions spent on them…the other 135000 couldn’t care less, or are happy.

Try a different approach maybe?

Again..good luck.

So we need to cancel Brexit, then? That vote was *FAR* closer than this survey, and less than half of those eligible to vote, voted to leave the EU. No. It’s not going to happen, is it? That is because neither referenda or surveys work in that way. Those who do not vote, or do not take part, *do not count* A survey is a sample of… Read more »


Less than 5000 completed a highly dubious survey.

Good luck with getting your billions.


Again showing your ignorance about how surveys work.

Another proponent of the Trump school of fact finding.

If you don’t like it call it fake, despite the evidence to the contrary.

News for you. It isn’t fake. You are the minority.

Suggest you start getting used to it.

Billy b

Very interesting that Ryde Acedemy students voted against a fixed link recently. Good for them.

StS When I see all the fixed link stickers on all the cars and houses here on the Island, front page news on the local rag ( and not page 12 ) I will admit I’m wrong…I’m big enough to do that!! You are so blinded by having your fixed link it’s bordering on being unhealthy. You can call it the whole population of the Island wants… Read more »