Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Isle of Wight ferry company Scoot makes staff redundant

A Scoot ferry Image copyright Scoot Ferries
Image caption Scoot Ferries started running services between Yarmouth and Lymington, as well as Portsmouth and Cowes, earlier this year

Thirty-two workers at a new Isle of Wight ferry firm have been made redundant four days before Christmas after the company went bust.

Scoot Ferries, based in Cowes, cancelled all sailings over the weekend after buyout talks failed.

Staff received their P45s at a meeting earlier. One worker said he felt "let down" by the management.

Chief executive Zoë Ombler blamed a lack of sustainable investment and "a fair amount of bad luck".

Worker Jon Gayle said: "We've got four days until Christmas, I haven't got any type of security to fall back on.

"It feels awful for the dedication and time and effort I've put into this company to be let down so astronomically.

Image caption Worker Jon Gayle said it was devastating news to get just before Christmas

"I think poor management led to bad decisions and we've all taken the brunt of it."

Chief executive Zoë Ombler said: "Running a ferry company is an expensive business and it's fair to say we were under capitalised from day one and desperately looking for additional investment.

"I'm devastated for the sake of all of my team and our loyal customers who were let down tremendously badly."

She admitted the firm had made mistakes but said there was still support for the service.

Image caption Chief executive Zoë Ombler blamed money problems on issues with finding investment

David Meany, of Ashtons Recovery LLP, has been appointed as official receiver and said he was hopeful a new buyer could be found to take on the firm.

He added: "We've been in discussions with two or three potential parties this morning, we're not sure at the moment whether they are looking at buying the company or buying the business and assets."

Scoot Ferries started running services between Yarmouth and Lymington, as well as Portsmouth and Cowes, earlier this year.

Angry customers who had booked journeys took to social media on Saturday to complain about a lack of information from the firm.

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