Ryde councillor: Wightlink’s 20min pier waiting time change ‘not properly thought through’

Ryde Town Councillor, Julian Critchley, has asked for a meeting with Wightlink as a matter of urgency to help them understand the impact of the planned 20 minute waiting time on the pier.

julian critchley

Yesterday, OnTheWight reported the news that Wightlink plan to reduce the waiting time for vehicles on Ryde Pier from later this month.

The new plans allow only 20 minutes of waiting time on the pier, instead of the current hour. The move has come under fire from many residents.

Critchley: Idea “not been properly thought through”
After reading of the plans through OnTheWight, Ryde Town Councillor, Julian Critchley, told us,

“This idea has not been properly thought through, and Wightlink would have been well-advised to consult the Ryde Town Council before making such an unwise decision. 20 minutes is completely insufficient to ensure those waiting to pick up relatives/friends can be off the pier.

“The journey up and down the pier can take ten minutes, and the boats are frequently 5-10 minutes delayed in offloading passengers.

People will be caught out by fines even if they have turned up on time, through no fault of their own.”

Knock-on effect of traffic
Cllr Critchley said the traffic feeding into the roundabout at the end of the pier already became blocked-up a peak times and that problem could be averted by something as straightforward and simple as extending the waiting time to 30 minutes.

He said,

“In addition, Wightlink have clearly not taken any account of the knock-on traffic problems which will be caused by drivers trying to time their arrival in a much smaller window.

“Queuing traffic is likely to back up Union Street, bringing central Ryde to a halt at peak commuter times. This cannot be allowed to happen.”

Meeting requested as matter of urgency
Cllr Critchley finished by saying,

“I have contacted fellow RTC councillors, and have asked for a meeting with Wightlink as a matter of urgency to ensure that they understand the need to take account of the local community they serve.”

OnTheWight have put a series of questions to Wightlink and will update once we hear back from them.

Thursday, 14th June, 2018 11:54am


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

Filed under: Ferry, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Ryde, Isle of Wight, 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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18 Comments on "Ryde councillor: Wightlink’s 20min pier waiting time change ‘not properly thought through’"

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Absolutely spot-on from the councillor. 20 minutes is hopelessly inadequate to drive up and down the pier and collect someone. We already pay a £1 charge for the privelege. Yes, the answer maybe for passengers is to use the train down to the Esplanade but this will only lead to congestion elsewhere. The use of ANPR cameras would no doubt be to make money out of those… Read more »
I worry about the motive behind the 20 minute decision. It’s transparently obvious to any pier user that 20 minutes would be a very well-timed pick-up with a very well-timed Catamaran. I don’t think it’s hard to see that many drivers might feel so anxious about a possible fine that they would feel compelled to pay a parking charge even if they were not actually going to… Read more »

Totally agree. This is a move to squeeze more money from people for using their service. Where I have a choice I will travel by hover or go via Southampton.


Thirty minutes is reasonable. Especially when collecting disabled passengers.
In future I won’t be risking the 20 minutes limit so they will be losing my pound.

Another Perspective

The solution is simple

Use the Hovercraft


Whilst I completely agree the proposal is stupid and needs to be reconsidered, in the event there is no change, it is worth remembering that Government regulations means that you get an extra 10 minutes beyond your ticket time in case you are late, so it will be 30 minutes. A little bit more but still very tight!


Why not arrange to pick someone up 10 mins after the ferry is due to arrive? They could wait in the enclosed waiting area by the ticket office, or in the cafe if it’s chilly. That way you have a total of 30 mins.


Make travel to and from the island take even longer – what a bright future you offer.


Can you not see what an over reaction your comment is? As if 10 mins spent in a cafe looking over the sea at the lovely Ryde skyline is a an appalling experience.

I made a reasonable suggestion for those who don’t want to risk a fine.


It’s unreasonable. If you’ve been off the island on business, returning late at night from a day/free days/weekend away, then (a) you want to get home and (b) the go forsaken cafe is probably closed!

If it’s so late that the cafe is closed – it’s usually open till 9pm – then there should be no problem picking someone up in 20 minutes. I find it very strange that some have marked my original suggestion down 17 times. I’m not supporting the 20 minute rule, merely making a reasonable suggestion for those who worry they won’t make it in time and don’t… Read more »
It doesn’t always work out that way chrisinthe morning because of the many variables :- tides on the Solent, or because of the weather -it can be sunny and clear in for instance Ventnor and then icy in patches and misty over Brading Downs or viceversa. The people in Ryde don’t want us driving round and round the one way system if we get there a bit… Read more »

Yes indeed Odie;it’s the same with any journey, which is why I suggested arranging to meet a little after the ferry is due to allow for things going astray.


Why would anyone want to sit in their car for more than 20 mins at the end of the pier ?