A new ferry service between Saltash and Plymouth has been launched.

The first Royal William Yard to Saltash ferry arrived on May 24 at the Saltash Jubilee Pontoon greeted by a buoyant Saltash town council party.

The new river link follows a successful public transport day in March which saw hundreds of the town’s residents and visitors trialing the 30-minute Tamar river journey to Plymouth.

Owner of Plymouth Boat Trips Ben Squire said of the collaboration with Saltash Town Council: “We’re thrilled to be working with Saltash Town Council to deliver this important new service for commuters and tourists alike.

“It has long been our aim to grow our network of ferry routes across Plymouth and Cornwall and this is another very positive step on that journey.”

The boat link is planned to run throughout the summer months until September 30. It is hoped the new water link will help to drive footfall between Plymouth’s iconic Royal William Yard and Saltash, and boost the local economy at both destinations.

Saltash deputy mayor Cllr Rachel Bullock who welcomed the first visitors to Saltash from the inaugural ferry trip said: “We applied for Community Levelling Up funding to host a transport trial day. We hosted that at Easter this year with lots of different forms of transport but the most popular one by far was the Royal William Yard ferry. As a result of that, today, we have a new Saltash ferry.

“Saltash is the first town in Cornwall. I think, for a Cornish town, we are overlooked because we’re not an obvious destination as a tourist town. We have a lovely town centre though with independent shops and lots of lovely cafes; we have lots going on here and a lovely community so please come and visit Saltash.”

Plymouth resident Pippa Squire travelled across on the first trip from Plymouth to Saltash and commented: “We love to be here. It’s a lovely way to travel rather than getting in the car. It’s a great excuse to come and visit Cornwall”.

Waiting with his family to make the first journey to Plymouth, Adam Cobb, resident of Saltash said: “It will be great for the area if it works. We’d like to use it quite frequently.”

Starting at 9.45am in the morning the 70-capacity foot ferry will depart every hour and a half from Royal William Yard to Saltash and return, with the last boat leaving Saltash at 6pm.

Fares are priced at £5 per journey for adults and £2.50 for children (three to 15 years), children under two travel free. Bikes can be taken aboard for £2.50.

Book tickets and find more information at www.plymouthboattrips.co.uk/ferries/rwy-saltash-ferry