People hoping to hop aboard ferries for non-essential travel have been turned away.

CalMac turned away 35 hopeful travellers last weekend at Ardrossan and other terminals.

Robert Morrison, CalMac ‘s director of operations, said: "It should not have to be down to staff to ensure people are not travelling.

"There has to be an element of personal responsibility taken and people really need to be asking themselves is my journey really necessary.

"If it’s for leisure and recreation the answer is clearly no."

The ferry operator is continuing its checks on people travelling for non-essential reasons with port staff now asking to see a driver’s licence for proof that they are an island resident, or evidence that they are a key worker, before being allowed to board.  

CalMac is seeking to reinforce the government’s "stay home, protect the NHS, save lives" message after seeing a recent increase in people trying to travel for day trips.

Mr Morrison said: "The good weather may tempt people to get out and about, but I would urge everyone to continue to follow government guidelines and stay home.

"Getting a day trip to the beach is not essential travel and we will have no hesitation in refusing to board anyone who does not have a legitimate reason to sail with us."

Travellers were also turned away from Largs and Wemyss Bay at the weekend.

Passenger and vehicle numbers are down 95 per cent across CalMac’s 28 routes, and the ferry operator is hoping for a repeat of Easter this May holiday weekend when people heeded the advice to stay at home.

Ayrshire's Police Chief Superintendent Faroque Hussain previously said: "Ayrshire has some great parks and beaches including those on Arran.

"If you are thinking of having a day trip to any of these, please do not come."


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