THE relaxation of lockdown failed to go smoothly for Cumbrae businesses due to a ferry failure.

CalMac ferry users have now been told they may put up with 'more breakdowns than usual' due to the age of the MV Loch Shira ferry, a meeting heard.

The ferry broke down on Monday when many businesses were coming out lockdown on the island for the first time.

The ferry was back in service later in the morning after the fault was repaired but caused disruption to schooling and commuters.

Conservative councillor Tom Marshall, who is a member of the CalMac Ferry Users' group, said: "The matter was discussed at the online meeting of the ferry users' group the following evening. "CalMac representative stated that given the MV Loch Shira is now 17 years old, people can expect more breakdowns than usual.

"It has had four since it had its annual overhaul - so that statement is a concern."

Ferry capacity remains affected, with frequency of sailings also reduced.

As recently reported, The Scottish Government, through Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd (CMAL) is planning to replace the MV Loch Riddon, which sails between Cumbrae and Largs in summer with a larger vessel, closer in capacity to the MV Loch Shira.