Scarinish Pier Car Park Closing

Car park closing sign Isle of TireeMay 2014 sees the beginning of Argyll and Bute Council’s £1.1million road reconstruction project which will tackle road surfaces on all of the public roads on Tiree.

Last week Co-op shoppers were greeted with a notice stating that ‘All cars must be removed from the Pier Car Park by Monday 28th of April’. Karen Jameson confirmed that Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd (CMAL) will be facilitating Argyll and Bute Council in their endeavour to re-surface the roads. We decided to get in touch with Mark Calder from Argyll and Bute Council to find out more:

“Argyll and Bute Council is currently undertaking £1.1million of road surface dressing work on all of the public roads on Tiree as part of the 2014 roads reconstruction project. The council has commissioned Kiley Brothers, one of the UK’s leading specialists in carriageway and footway surface treatments, to carry out the work on our behalf.

“ The public car park at the pier head is not publicly maintained; and the contractor needs storage space for up to 300 tonnes of surface dressing material and this is the ideal location. The council has obtained written approval from CalMac to use the car park. Notices have been placed locally to advise of the closure and those businesses directly affected have been informed. The material will be delivered to the island in three separate loads, with the first one expected on May 7th. The programme of works indicates completion by the end of May; however, this is dependent on the weather.”

Losing this parking space, which is already congested at busy times from Easter onwards, leaves us wondering where on earth people will park at the pier… Catriona MacLennan, a concerned local business owner has also been in touch.

Catriona, who is firstly delighted that road improvements are being carried out also raises some of her concerns about the impact that this work will have on her business.

Catriona expressed that “No alternative parking is being provided for ferry users. Congestion to MacLennan Motors fuel and garage will be intensified. The road at the top of the pier to the left is a dead end and no sign is in place to inform travellers coming off the ferry who park all around the area making access more difficult.” She also stated that “Communication with the local public and businesses in the area has been non-existent, which is extremely disappointing.”

The Local Community Development Trust states that, “It’s great that money is being spent on the roads, however, it’s unfortunate that as well as the disruption that upgrading the roads will cause, there will be further disruption and congestion at the pier during this busy time of the year.”

Further communication with Finlay McRae of CalMac assures us that “there will be no impact or change to ferry operations at Scarinish”


Sophie Isaacson & Louise Reid


  • Lachie Brown jnr

    The resurfacing of roads on Tiree is very welcome, however surely there must be more “ideal locations” to store 300 tonnes of chips?.

    Where are people supposed to park at the ferry now, on the grass opposite Deobedal?, in front of the Garage?

    Place is going to be chaos especially as Tiree heads into the tourist season.

    I would like to understand how Mr McRae intends to mitigate the impact to ferry users?


  • Perhaps Mr McRae will, after the work is complete, finally get on with “Maintaining” the car park…. the car park next to my house….for the last 6 years at has been me who picks up the rubbish….and me who fixed the fence.

    Why on earth did they not store the road surfacing material at several locations ? they still have to move it again….

    Plenty of hard standing at the old camp …

    Anyways whats done is done, as ever, nobody decided to inform the island residents.

    Karl….. House next to the big piles of gravel.

  • John Gunderson

    Having just travelled the length and breadth of the Western Isles (Highland Region) it really brought home to me how bad the roads are in Tiree. I recall writing to the newspaper just before ‘Tilley’ became operational about how bad the roads were from Scarinish to Caoles. Several months later there was a reply from the Council to say the potholes, ruts etc. had been fixed. Suffice to say the remedial work done can only be described as either temporary or shoddy. Judging by the number and extent of faults throughout the island I do not see just what 300 tons of gravel will do to sort the problem out in the long term.
    I am glad I am not a cyclist or motor cyclist!

  • Well we all have the option to sue the Council if we are injured or our vehicles sustain damage due road deemed as hazardous or dangerous.

    The council lads have been fighting a never-ending battle with the roads…all repairs are temporary…as for “shoddy” ? I think this is a bit over the top…given the limited resources provided by A&B council the have done the best they can.

    Personally I just hope once the new surface ( thats all it is, a new surface…the substrata is not suitable for HGV or heavy agricultural use) is laid all the loose gravel is removed from the roads…if it is not, then accidents will happen.

  • I dont know where the figure of 300 tons came from when it was actually 3000 tons .get the facts right before you complain

  • I think An Tirisdeach in the above article states 300 tonnes ? Looks like John Gunderson was a visitor.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.