An Isle of Wight delegation could be formed to further highlight impact of cuts to Wightlink ferry services.
FEARS Wightlink debts to parent company Macquarie have led to damaging service cuts and redundancies have been raised by Andrew Turner MP in a meeting with business secretary Vince Cable.
The meeting on Monday was described as extremely constructive by Mr Turner, who said he hoped an Isle of Wight delegation, including union representatives and commuters, could be formed to further highlight the impact of the cuts on the Island.
Wightlink’s funding arrangements were among the issues discussed by Mr Turner and Mr Cable.
Mr Turner said: "Yarmouth resident, Peter Bonnell, raised this issue recently at a public meeting. I have followed it up because I believe Islanders deserve clarity about the funding of a company which provides us with lifeline services.
"The discussion with the Secretary of State was extremely wide ranging and I am pleased to say he very quickly understood the impact that the ferry services have, not least because he has used them to travel to the Island himself in a private capacity.
"I am also trying to find out if the complex inter-company financial arrangements are in place to minimise tax liability in the UK and will pass the Secretary of State the answers I receive to the questions I have asked."
He added: "I now intend to set up a meeting with Stephen Hammond MP, the Transport Minister responsible for Maritime Affairs, and I hope that can include a delegation to explain the impact the latest service cuts are having on individuals and the Island as a whole."
*Isle of Wight Trades Union Council spokesman Steve Butler said they welcomed the intention of a meeting with Mr Hammond, when they would present him with the facts.
"We expect action," said Mr Butler.