Friday, 3 July 2009

The Importance of Proof Reading

Mary O'Driscoll, one of the directors of RIFL, gave me a copy of their leaflet 'Rathlin Island Walks'. A friend drew attention to the distances from Ballycastle printed underneath the location map so I've used Google maps to check them out. Here are the approximate distances according to Google:

Belfast to Ballycastle 55m/90km
Dublin to Ballycastle 160m/255km
Derry to Ballycastle 50m/80km
Coleraine to Ballycastle 20m/32km

I collected one of Mary's Cape Clear leaflets along with the current timetable for the Rathlin ferry route. It seems that catamarans have become very fashionable, North and South.

Adds July 13, 2009

It would appear that the phantom catamaran advertised in the Cape Clear leaflet has not yet been spotted in the waters off Cape Clear. Is there a Cape Clear Triangle? Is this a variant on the Loch Ness monster yarn?

There seem to be two other schools of thought on this miraculous vessel: the mass hypnotists and the traditionalists. The mass hypnosis theorists believe that since the boat has been passed by the M.S.O. it must exist. If islanders can’t see it then we are all the subject of some kind of general delusion.

A RIFL spokeswoman said that the Rathlin Express, currently moored in Rathlin Harbour, is expected to go into service in about a weeks time when some things have been sorted out and the crew has been trained.

I wonder who is financing this vessel. RIFL and its sister company in Cape Clear appear to be strapped for cash - reported redundancies, wage cuts, industrial tribunals and death in service benefits - and the DRD budgeted £1.2 million for a passenger only vessel has been withdrawn. Strangely enough, this is the approximate cost of the Rathlin Express, according to its builders. Does the DRD have a Mystic Meg or is there an alternative explanation? It really is uncanny. It seems that the Committee for Regional Development has no crystal balls.

By the way, Government ministers and senior MCA officials are still struggling to provide a convincing explanation as to why MCA permitted the MV Canna to carry passengers in September 2008 with an invalid passenger certificate and presumably no insurance.