CMAL’s head of vessels says that the new Ardrossan to Arran Ferry will be the pride of the fleet.

And Jim Anderson confirmed that they hoped they MV Glen Sannox will be taking passengers to and from Scotland in Miniature from next September.

Jim told the Herald about the latest at last week’s stakeholder event and said: “What the shipyard are saying to us is, for the first vessel which is Glen Sannox, is summer of next year. “Following the delivery to us there will be around two months of crew familiarisation. That is when Calmac, the crew and the fleet will just iron out any problems on the vessel.

“I think this is a great opportunity and it is certainly something that CMAL are about. CMAL are really big into stakeholder engagement and I have been in this job now for nine years and been on the board for the last two and a half years and it is a big part of what we do with any ship.

“Even before we started looking into the ship and the ins and outs, we had lots of stakeholder engagement and said ‘here are the plans’ and we just welcome input from people, especially on things like accessibility and one of the big things this ship has really included like no other vessels we’ve got on the fleet is accessibility for everybody.

“For us, these will be state-of-the-art vessels and they will be operating on dual fuel, the level of passenger and crew comfort will be much greater than anything we’ve done before. When these ships come online they will become the new pride of the fleet, there’s no doubt about that.”