Public consultation on proposed amendment to the Strangford Lough ferry service timetable

Consultation opened on 05 October 2015. Closing date 11 December 2015.


The proposed change is to introduce a sailing from Portaferry at 7.20 am on weekdays all year round.

This would be offset by dropping the last two sailings in the evening (Sunday to Friday) from 1 October to 31 March. From 1 April to 30 September the existing evening sailings will be unchanged.

Over the course of the year, the total number of sailings offered by the ferry service will be the same.


Consultation description


TransportNI is considering an amendment to the Strangford Lough ferry service timetable to provide an additional early morning sailing from Portaferry on weekday mornings.

Over recent years TransportNI has received several requests for a permanent early morning sailing from Portaferry.  The first sailing from Portaferry on weekdays is at 7.45 am and is generally at full vehicle capacity.

Since 2011, an additional sailing at 7.15 am from Portaferry has been provided during the annual refit of the MV Portaferry II.  During the refit the smaller ferry, the MV Strangford, is in service and does not have the capacity to cope with the demand for the normal first sailing at 7.45 am.  The early sailing is welcomed by many commuters from Portaferry who either have to travel by road to get to work on time or get to work later than they would prefer.

Passenger count records show that, on weekdays, the early morning demand exceeds the demand for the last sailings in the evening.  In response to this demand and requests from the public and public representatives, TransportNI has decided to explore the possibility of making the early sailing permanent. 

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