In order to ensure harbour users had a 7-days-a-week water taxi service, Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC) has been providing a stakeholder subsidy contribution to Cowes Water Taxis Ltd for the 2017 season. This subsidy was discussed and agreed with the Harbour Advisory Committee at the beginning of the year but runs out at the end of this month. Commissioners have been consulting the Advisory Committee on the future provision of the service for 2018 and beyond.
As part of the solution, CHC will be opening a tender process for potential water taxi operators to submit a bid to receive a stakeholder dividend contribution towards the delivery of next year’s water taxi service in Cowes Harbour. We propose to use the feedback from our ongoing customer ‘Annual Moorings Survey’ to inform the requirements for harbour taxi service provision for 2018. A tender document will be drawn up and promulgated later in October; this will lay out the expected standards and minimum service levels.
Once applications have been received (process and relevant dates to be confirmed), the Commissioners will present their recommendations to the Advisory Committee and consult members on the best way forward before any decisions are made for the 2018 season.
CHC does not have the power to authorise any particular water taxi operator and those who possess the appropriate licences issued by the Isle of Wight Council may continue to offer water taxi services within the Cowes Harbour jurisdiction.Please note, full details and timings for winter 2017-18 water taxis can be found on the CHC website.