A COUNCILLOR has asked the Cowes floating bridge is 'sent back'.

It is the latest instalment in the saga, which came as the service was suspended for several days to fix the prow hinge at the west end — which previously caused problems in June.

A foot passenger replacement service was put in place between 5am and 11pm.

Floating Bridge No. 6 was first announced in 2012 and commissioned to be built in 2016 by Welsh boat builders Mainstay Marine for £3.2m.

Its maiden voyage was in May 2017, only to be called out of action two days later, for training issues.

In November 2018 a council document showed costs of the bridge and replacement services had spiralled to more than £6.4m.

Cllr Karl Love, of the East Cowes ward, posted a statement on Facebook, calling for No.6 to be sent back and a replacement bridge ordered.

He said: "The floating bridge is an embarrassment to our people and council leadership. Once again the floating bridge fails.

"This has been a fiasco and failure from the beginning, costing taxpayers millions of pounds extra to simply keep it running.

"One cannot comprehend the position taken by Cllr Ian Ward and Cllr Dave Stewart, who have consistently stated the bridge is a good reliable service.

"What is it that prevents our Isle of Wight Council from taking a positive, proactive approach, ordering a new bridge based on taking out a cheap loan, as they have done with other projects, to admit this bridge is not fit for purpose?

"Our bridge workforce operators cannot get to grips with something that constantly lets them down.

"It’s time to make the decision once and for all."

The Isle of Wight Council has been asked for a comment.

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