Hopes high for new ferry
A CONSORTIUM hoping to bring back the Swansea Cork ferry is waiting to hear whether they have secured a boat to run the route.
It is estimated the route, which was axed in January 2007, was worth £65 million a year to Wales in 2006.
The co-operative led by West Cork Tourism has been locked in negotiations to buy a 340-cabin, 1,400-passenger ferry called the Julia for the past few days.
The vessel is owned by the Finnish-based Aktia Savings Bank, and operated between Helsinki and St Petersburg until last year.
If the deal is ratified by creditors of the Finnish firm that used to own it, the deal could be sealed as early as Tuesday. The ferry could be operational as early as June.
Chairman of West Cork Tourism Conor Buckley said he was hopeful.
"We are close to agreeing a deal now," he said.
"It's a case of waiting. We are expecting to hear before Tuesday whether they want to go ahead, and we are hopeful of a positive outcome."