The Isles of Scilly Steamship Group welcomed its 4.5 millionth ferry passenger aboard the Scillonian III ferry today (Tuesday 21st May).

Jacky Shepley from Paignton boarded the ferry to visit the Isles of Scilly with her husband and two dogs on 21st May and was greeted by the company’s Deputy Travel Centre Manager, who presented her with a celebratory bottle of fizz and travel tickets for 2020.

Mrs Shepley was the 4.5 millionth passenger to catch a ferry to the Isles of Scilly since the Steamship Group began its regular ferry services in 1926, following the formation of the Group in 1920.

Since then, there have been three Scillonian passenger ferries in service operated by Isles of Scilly Travel – with the current ferry, Scillonian III, in service for the last 42 years.

Isles of Scilly Travel also operates fixed-wing Skybus flight services from Exeter, Newquay and Land’s End.

Mrs Shepley said: “We come to Cornwall every year and always wanted to visit the Islands.  We finally got around to it today as the local’s offer was a great incentive. It was a lovely surprise to find out I was the 4.5 millionth customer and look forward to using our voucher to spend some more time exploring the Islands next year.”

Stuart Reid, Managing Director of the Isles of Scilly Steamship Group, said: “Providing regular and reliable ferry services to the Isles of Scilly is one of the core, fundamental services which the Steamship Group prides itself on offering, providing both a vital lifeline for the islanders who live and work on Scilly and a popular and affordable way to visit this stunning destination for the many thousands of holidaymakers who return to the islands year after year.

“Since 1926, there have been passenger ferries travelling between Penzance and St Mary’s, and it was fantastic to reach the milestone of having transported 4.5 million passengers by ferry this week, and to congratulate our 4.5 millionth passenger in person as they came aboard Scillonian III.”

The Scillionian III ferry began service on 17th May 1977, replacing the Scillonian II which serviced the route for 21 years before her.

During the last 42 years, Scillonian III has made more than 9000 return journeys between the Isles of Scilly and the Cornish mainland, travelled more than 648,000 nautical miles, and carried more than 4.5 million passengers – including visiting Royals, past Prime Ministers and many celebrity visitors to Scilly.

Scillonian III sails from Penzance to St Mary’s on the Isles of Scilly daily between March and November.

This summer, to offer more opportunities for people to travel between Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and to support growth of the visitor market, Isles of Scilly Travel is offering double return sailings on Saturdays throughout the peak summer months.

For sailing times or to book a crossing to the Isles of Scilly, visit the ferry timetable and booking page.