Today (Friday) marks 140 years since the historic train and ferry links between Portsmouth Harbour and Ryde Pier Head were established.
The news comes as Wightlink’s FastCat foot passenger service is due to be reinstated - which had been suspended for the longest period in its history in April because of coronavirus.
To celebrate its return and 140 years since the Island was connected to the mainland via the route, the Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, City Councillor Rob Wood and the Mayor of Ryde, Town Councillor Michael Lilley will make the journey across the Solent.
Today is also 55 years since Hovertravel started travelling between Southsea and Ryde.
Both Wightlink and Hovertravel will also be engaging in promotional activities to encourage visitors to take a ‘Ticket of Ryde’ in August.
Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, City Councillor Rob Wood said:
“Our connection with the Isle of Wight is very important to us. We are proud to be celebrating this relationship and recognising how closely we work together.
“This is our opportunity to mark the importance of good, strong and reliable transport links, celebrate these important anniversaries and underline how vital it is to continue to do all we can to help businesses to recover from this difficult period.”
Mayor of Ryde, Town Councillor Michael Lilley said:
“We are proud to celebrate 140 years of the historic train and ferry links between Portsmouth Harbour and Ryde Pier Head and 55 years of hovercraft crossings between Southsea and Ryde.
“We are grateful for both Wightlink and Hovertravel for their daily services, Covid-19 showed how important they are to Ryde’s residents and businesses. We have much to celebrate and offer in community spirit and friendship.”