(23 April 2020) Wightlink has thanked freight and delivery companies for their help in ensuring the Island receives the right supplies at the right time throughout the coronavirus crisis.
Wightlink has been working closely with hauliers and distribution companies as it prioritises the movement of freight – including much-needed supplies for the NHS – at this difficult time.
Key has been ensuring these vital supplies and deliveries get through against the backdrop of significant reductions in the number of sailings across all cross-Solent operators.
Kirstie Higgins-Day, Head of Business Development at Wightlink says: “There has been a significant increase in the transportation of medical supplies for the NHS as well as laundered linen for hospitals and medical facilities. A lot of work is ongoing so that medical and food supplies are prioritised over less essential goods.
“The cross-Solent ferry operators are also working together to make sure their timetables support the shift patterns of the emergency services and NHS staff who need to get to and from work around the clock.
“That requires the support of our freight companies and we are really grateful for the understanding and flexibility they have shown I am sure Island residents will join us in expressing our appreciation.”
Chris Hall, commercial director at Merstone-based Isle of Wight Distribution says: “You name it, we are carrying it. “We are carrying around 5,000 parcels day – we’ve not seen anything like it at this time of the year.
“These are very difficult times but it’s about working together to get through it. The ferries have had to take steps to ensure they are able to retain a lifeline service and we completely understand that. We just work with it.”
Charlie Bird, store manager of Sainsbury’s Newport, said: “There has remained a constant need for supplies – not least for the elderly and the vulnerable who rely on us.
“Wightlink have been really helpful. They have been flexible when required and the decision to prioritise freight has helped ensure we can keep our stores well stocked with the products our customers need.
“Both Sainsbury’s and Wightlink understand the need to keep the Island moving and supplied and it has been great working together in what remains such a difficult time.”