Will the Cowes Floating Bridge be back in service as planned? (Updated)

News OnTheWight has been attempting to get a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ from the Isle of Wight council all day. So far they’ve not been able to confirm one way or the other

floating bridge suspended sign

At the end of September, the Isle of Wight council announced that the Cowes Floating Bridge – which has been suspended since 14th July 2020 – would return to service on Saturday 17th October.

Engineers have been working on the Bridge in the water this week and it’s even been spotted travelling across the River Medina.

Will it be ready?
Keen to ensure readers have the more accurate information available News OnTheWight sought an assurance from the council that the Bridge will be returning service tomorrow as planned.

We’ve been waiting all day for someone within the council to give us a ‘yes’ or ‘no’, but at time of publishing and despite the comms team chasing, there was still no news.

A spokesperson for the council told a News OnTheWight,

“The Isle of Wight Council can confirm the floating bridge will return to service early next week following repairs to its hydraulic systems.

“Staff are due to undertake essential safety training on Monday (19 October) with the vessel entering service at 5am on Tuesday.”

Major upheaval
Vehicles wanting to cross the river have had to divert via Newport – and battle the St Mary’s Roundabout roadworks – to reach the other side for over three months.

Meanwhile foot passengers have had to use the water taxi (with many reporting long delays in all weathers) or take a bus via Newport.

Hopefully before the day is out, we’ll be able to let you know whether you can use the Floating Bridge from Saturday.

Article edit
6.38pm 16th Oct 2020 – statement from IWC added

Friday, 16th October, 2020 4:14pm


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

Filed under: Cowes, East Cowes, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Roads, Top story, Travel

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14 Comments on "Will the Cowes Floating Bridge be back in service as planned? (Updated)"

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Mr Magoo

Incredible, less than 24 hours before the floating bridge is due to be back in service and the Isle of Wight Council cannot say whether it will be operating. Keep trying to get an answer OTW; other Island media don’t seem to have this on their news’ agendas.

Benny C

County Press struggles to hit the definition of journalism! Waste of paper, it will not survive . Typical poorly run business lacking appropriate management nt outlook on future risk or reward.

Due to a recurring brain failure the IoW Council have taken itself out of service for an undisclosed period. Following routine competence checks it was revealed that there was none to inspect, although the Council’s contract with the taxpayers required that there should be. A manufacturing fault has been blamed for this oversight in that, whilst the design of the council assumed a specific level of common… Read more »

That assumes there’s a brain there to fail!

Benny C
Will Ian Ward be back in post after the local elections? Hopefully not. Will Ian Ward be held accountable for the disruption, cost, mismanagement and embarrassment engulfing the chain ferry procurement project, exacerbated by his failure in role as cabinet member for infrastructure? Probably not. Let’s ditch these expensive bungling pale stale male fails. No more Dads Army. Ward browsed while the ferry replacement process buckled. He… Read more »
Mr Magoo

Incredible, less than 24 hours before the floating bridge is due to be back in service and the Isle of Wight Council cannot say whether it will be operating. Keep trying to get an answer OTW unlike other Island ‘news’ outlets.


It’s the sense of urgency that impresses?


Forgive me for falling about laughing, what an absolute farce. How much more time and money is going to be spent on this disaster. Shame on this Council.


Looks like it is going to be Tuesday now. So I’ve heard anyway.


Has anyone been down to the bookies and found out what the odds are?


“ Will the Cowes Floating Bridge be back in service on Saturday as planned? ”

Oooooo it’s soooo exciting. Does anyone know the odds in the bookies?


Telling people they are useless is rarely constructive.
Surely, as no-one has used the floating bridge for weeks, and have found ways around the situation, now is a good time for a long term boycott, to get the message across. I.e. The management of the bridge, over many months, is just not good enough.


Useless is being to kind. When your in the hot seat your there to be counted, no excuses, if your not up to the task you shouldn’t be there and this Tory led shambles shouldn’t be there pure and simple.

Benny C
No one is going to cut their nose off to spite their face. And no one is telling Ian Ward he is useless. The bigger point is that folks should understand what accountability means, what they are entitled to expect from their Councillors, the choices they get to make at election time. This is a great opportunity for the real impacts of either not properly questioning candidates,… Read more »