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Dorchester in u-turn over job

CalMac chief decides to stay in post

Martin DorchesterMartin Dorchester has withdrawn his resignation as Caledonian MacBrayne’s managing director and chief executive for the David MacBrayne Group.

Mr Dorchester announced last October he was leaving after CalMac was awarded the Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services (CHFS) contract.

He said he felt the time was right to seek new challenges and that he would leave the company at the end of March this year.

Speaking about the decision to stay, he said: “Towards the end of last year, I announced my intention to leave my position as CEO of David MacBrayne and MD of CalMac at the end of March 2017.

“Having secured the CHFS contract for the next eight years, as well as the 35-year concession to run Marchwood Military Port in Hampshire as a joint venture, I felt I had achieved what I came to do and it was time to move on to new challenges.

“As you will all be aware, Transport Minister Humza Yousaf announced last week that the government will be undertaking a review of Scottish ferry services.

“This review will include applicability of the Teckal exemption, which would potentially remove the requirement to put ferry services out to tender, and the management structures of David MacBrayne Limited (DML) and Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited.

“Having discussed the challenges and opportunities presented by this review with the DML Board and with the Transport Minister, I have taken the decision to stay in my current post and lead the organisation through this new chapter.

“I am excited by the opportunities presented by this review and very much look forward to continuing to work with my team and with all of our stakeholders to secure the best possible results for our employees, passengers and communities, as well as the taxpayer.”

David McGibbon, chairman of David MacBrayne, said. “The board is delighted that Martin will stay to lead the group throughout what will be an important period. His experience, knowledge and leadership skills will be of great value.”

Update: Caledonian MacBrayne’s official carrying statistics for 2016 reveal that the company passed five million passengers for the first time since 1997.

The company operates the UK’s largest ferry network, with 32 vessels carrying out more than 136,000 individual sailings annually across an area which extends some 200 miles from Campbeltown on Kintyre and the Isle of Arran in the south, to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis in the north.

Many routes saw significant rises in both passenger and car numbers in the first full year after the roll-out of road equivalent tariff (RET) across all areas, with a total of 5,055,827 passengers and 1,356,396 cars network-wide.

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