From R. J. Barton, Chandlers Ford:

I recently spent a weekend on the Island. It was glorious weather and we had a lovely day at Wolverton. Then I read the pieces in the County Press regarding the ferries (CP, 31-08-18, and letters).

I was born, and lived for over 40 years, on the Island so I am not just another ‘grockle’ commenting. I was astonished at some of the naivety in the debate about either subsidising or, heaven forbid, the council taking over the ferries.

Islanders surely need to accept a fixed link is desperately needed and get all their force (and the MP who seems equally bizarre in his views on ferry nationalisation) behind achieving it.

I sometimes feel residents are in denial about a fixed link, because apparently there is still not a majority for such a solution. Can they not see the slow and serious degradation in services, education, health and infrastructure resulting from both council mismanagement and not being sufficiently attached to the rest of the UK to make it attractive for professionals to want to work there?

Then I read a staggering 30 to 40 per cent actually backing the ferry proposals. What form of denial is this?

I listen to Radio Solent in the mornings with regular headlines of ‘floating bridge out of service’.

Who on earth specified this lumbering monster and failed to do any systems engineering, of even the most basic type, before installing this ridiculous white elephant? I can only guess it is the same council whom 30 to 40 per cent of residents think is capable of running the cross-Solent ferries.

It’s high time reality dawned and Islanders collectively build consistent pressure to achieve a fixed link. I suspect most people would gladly pay something similar to the current ferry fare for the convenience and ease of getting to and from the Island without the loss of up to four hours’ travelling a few miles. The Islanders would surely have concessionary fares as many do now. I hear the doubters will say it will ‘stop being an Island and change totally’.

Well there are plenty of offshore islands around the world with fixed links that have benefitted immensely without drastic change occurring.