Ships of the Fleet
Traffic continued to pile up
at the CSP's Kyleakin outpost and another new ferry was duly ordered for the
service. Launched without ceremony at Port Glasgow on Wednesday 5th
October 1966, the second BROADFORD was, like the previous year's Portree, a
product of Lamont's yard, of identical dimensions and similar design. Her
navigation bridge, however, was placed aft for greater stability and her
side-ramps were hydraulically operated; they were also significantly wider, as
PORTREE was struggling to load large vehicles. The new BROADFORD cost £34,000
and in December 1966 repaired briefly to Greenock's Albert Harbour before
entering service at Kyleakin on 7th January 1967.
The 1954 BROADFORD, a 4-car
turntable craft, had been renamed BROADFORD II the previous June and remained in
service till the end of 1966. Though sold in January 1967 to the Orwell and
Harwich Navigation Co. Ltd, they never collected their new acquisition and
BROADFORD II deteriorated at Kyleakin for over a year. In March 1968 she was
sold on to Marine Transport Services Ltd. of Cobh, in the Republic of Ireland,
and crossed the Irish Sea later that spring after an overhaul at Campbeltown.
She remained in Irish service and appears to have been scrapped in 1981.
Her ramp submerged whilst loading in the Kyles
These 9-car ferry boats
certainly helped to clear up the vehicle traffic which was threatening to
overwhelm the Kyleakin service, but – unlike the surviving turntable ferries -
in wet weather passengers got soaked. In 1968 a very small shelter was fitted to
protect pedestrians on BROADFORD at least.
With the advent of the 28-car
KYLEAKIN (III) in August 1970, and the service's conversion to drive-through
operation, BROADFORD languished for some months as spare vessel and was
eventually summoned to the Clyde for service on the Kyles of Bute crossing, with
her old consort PORTREE. She underwent near-identical conversion at Lamont's
but, unlike PORTREE, was not re was neither re-engined nor (very marginally)
BROADFORD duly took up her new
Rhubodach-Colintraive career in June 1971 and, like PORTREE, was notionally
chartered to the Bute Ferry Co. Ltd, though both vessels continued to fly the
Caley pennant and the arrangement was technical only.
Like PORTREE, BROADFORD
occasionally assisted at the Largs-Cumbrae Slip station and, from the early
1980s, enjoyed her annual overhaul at the Ardmaleish boatyard on Rothesay's
outskirts. Latterly she seems to have been in service less frequently than her
With the advent of LOCH RIDDON
(1986) on the Colintraive station, the old Skye sisters were laid up and on 4th
November 1987 both PORTREE and BROADFORD were acquired by Mr Hooper of Sandbank
on the Holy Loch. If the former PORTREE now languishes as a glorified mooring in
that haven, BROADFORD has been more fortunate; she continues to ply the Clyde as
a workboat, minus a vehicle-ramp, in bright blue livery and glorying in the name
of BROADFORD BAY. She has spent much of 2004 at Renfrew harbour.
Text thanks to John MacLeod (C)
Laid-up with sister Portree in Sandbank,
As 'Broadford Bay' at Renfrew, Glasgow
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