[T]he popular ‘Bike Boat’ scheme offered by Windermere Lake Cruises will return to operating a daily service from this weekend (21st July 2018), running eight crossings each-way between Brockhole and Bark Barn throughout the summer school holiday period.
The service will be available seven days a week until Sunday 2nd September, with holders of a Windermere Lake Cruises’ Local Residents Discount card being offered a 20% discount on the regular ticket prices.
The Bike Boat operates between Brockhole – The Lake District Visitor Centre and Bark Barn jetty on the traffic-free western shore of Windermere, accessed by the Wray Castle – Ferry House bridleway. Single and return tickets are available. Details are online at https://www.windermere-lakecruises.co.uk/cruises-fares/bike-boat.
Foot passengers are also welcome to use the service, but priority will be given to cyclists for each crossing. For foot passengers wishing to cross from the western shore of Windermere to Brockhole, a passenger only service also operates from Wray Castle.
As a temporary measure following the suspension of the Windermere car ferry, cyclists have been accommodated on the cross-lakes service from Bowness Pier 3 to Ferry House. However, due to the anticipated increase in the number of visitors during the main school holiday period and the need to redeploy vessels to fulfil other commitments, from Saturday 21st July, that service will revert to carrying foot passengers only.
Managing Director of Windermere Lake Cruises, Nigel Wilkinson says, “We have tried our very best to help cyclists cross the lake following the unexpected problems with the Windermere car ferry. We hope that cyclists will understand that that we are committed to operating our published timetable during the school holiday period and in order to provide that level of service we have had to reallocate our fleet.
“We hope cyclists will enjoy using our Bike Boat service between Brockhole and Bark Barn and we look forward to the Windermere car ferry returning to service as soon as possible. Immediately following the problems with the car ferry, we supplemented the Bowness to Ferry House passenger service, whenever we had boats available, to provide an alternative for cyclists, which we hope has been appreciated by the cycling community.”
Meanwhile, as a gesture of goodwill until 28th October 2018, or until the car ferry returns to service if sooner, passengers holding a Windermere Lake Cruises’ Residents Discount Card who cross from Bowness Pier 3 to Ferry House, or vice versa, will be charged 50 pence each way, the same rate as they would have paid on the Windermere car ferry.
Cumbria County Council has added additional signage on the approach routes to the Windermere car ferry, confirming that businesses are open as usual on the western side of the lake and detailing the alternative passenger services, with diversion signage in place for motorists.