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johns1On the 7 July the ferry was asked to organise a crossing from Appledore to Instow (return), for Johns of Appledore and Instow, for a party including Nigel Barden (BBC Radio 2 Chef) plus fellow judges and journalists who were involved in awarding John's the prestigious UK 'Local Retailer of the Year'. They were all visiting Instow to visit Johns and experience the delights of the local produce and to see how the ferry service contributes to the local community and visitors. 
johns4Although at the start of the day the weather was awful luckily it improved as the day progressed. Everyone seemed pleased with both the ferry trip and the food! Nigel took some local ingredients to use on Simon Mayo's Radio 2 show on the 9 July, where he duly endorsed the beauty of Appledore and Instow and of course Johns shops.


60000 passengerMonday 13th April 2015 was a fantastic day for all of us who volunteer for this remarkable community not for profit organisation! After less than two weeks into our fifth season we have carried our 60,000 passenger! Rebecca Stewart from Barnes, London was that person. She was presented with a special mug produced by Bideford Pottery. She is pictured here with her husband Alex, children Isaac and Kitty and ferry skipper Dane Stanley. Thank you to all our sponsors, supporters and volunteers who have made this incredible milestone possible. 


Instow PierDuring the winter the two boats, Misty Blue and Lizzie M have been maintained, upgraded, cleaned and painted ready for the beginning of the ferry season.  The first ferries of the season started at 1525h and took some passengers between Appledore and Instow prior to the blessing of the fleet.
blessing appledoreAt Appledore Slipway there was a huge crowd of people. Brian Moores, the Chairman of AIFL started the celebrations and emphasised what a successful community project the ferry has become.  Cllr Andrew Eastman praised the ferry operation and cut the ribbon to mark the beginning of the ferry season. Canon Dr Ian Lovett blessed the fleet, the volunteers and all the passengers using the ferries.  The celebrations were enlivened by Chris Millington playing sea shanties to the delight of everyone.

Hector ChristieThe VIPs were loaded on to the ferry and on Instow Pier, which has been beautifully refurbished, Hector Christie entranced the crowd with his good wishes for the ferry season.
 Hector cut the ribbon, the fleet was blessed in Instow and Chris Millington continued to play in spite of the very cold, howling wind coming down the estuary.  Both Appledore and Torridge ladies gig rowers accompanied the ferries from Appledore to Instow and enhanced the celebrations.

volunteers Thank you to everyone who made the launch of the ferry season so special.

As it will be the school holidays there will be two boats running over the Easter period, have a look at the timetable and see when the boats are running.  If we cannot operate for any reason we shall put a news flash on the website and also on Facebook and Twitter.

There is a variety of cafes, pubs, restaurants and shops in the two villages so come along and explore.



 On Saturday 23 August 2014, the Kathleen and May arrived in Bideford.  The Kathleen and May sailed from Gloucester where she was involved in a film with Johnny Depp making Alice in Wonderland. The Kathleen and May left Bideford on Saturday 30 August returning to Liverpool for the time being.    




In spite of rather grey skies the launch of the season took place today with a blessing of the 'fleet' at 11h on Appledore slip with a wonderful crowd of supporters.  Canon Dr Ian Lovett carried out the blessing and then we all sang a rendition of 'Ferry across the Torridge'.  The ferry went over to Instow Quay and the blessing was repeated with a great turn out of supporters including pupils, teachers and the headmistress of Instow Primary School.  The children regaled the crowd with songs and then a beautiful piece of artwork emerged through the crowd which had been made by the pupils of Instow Primary School with some outside assistance.  The Instow lily was launched on to the estuary and other artistic creations were floated on the waters.
A very succesful start to the start to the season and thank you to everyone in Appledore and Instow who came to support the ferry.

Apart from the excitement of the blessing of the fleet, the ferry, Lizzie M, carried its first passengers from Instow to Appledore and then from Appledore to Instow.  Take a look at the photos below:









There was a good article on the ferry on Friday 23 May.  As this was an extract of the hour long interview a longer article will be available on the Daily Mirror website.


The Appledore Instow Ferry Limited will feature in a book by the National Lottery to be published this Spring. The AIFL won a £30,000 grant from the Lottery's scheme that supports village community projects. The article will focus on how the Ferry service was able to benefit from the money.


One of the UK's most read national newspapers the Daily Mirror is to document the AIFL's record in successful bids for lottery money. It's after the ferry was included as a case study in another lottery project – this time as part of a scheme called Power to Change. The article was published in May and a longer version is on the Daily Mirror website.


Media stories



photo 1 01Two ferries were put into service on Saturday 19 July 2014  looking festive with bunting, balloons and even cushions on the seats.  There was also a stock of umbrellas, just in case, however, they weren't needed.  The sun shone on the beautiful bride and groom, with their attractive bridesmaids all in cream.  The ferries transported nearly 80 guests from Appledore to Instow for their reception at Tapeley Park to the enjoyment of locals and visitors on the Appledore Quay.



The ferry was used by an ITV camera crew to film Dan the Fishman in the estuary being interviewed and bringing up a lobster pot.  He was then filmed cooking the lobster on the quay and sitting eating it and drinking champagne.  The filming should show the beauty of the estuary, Appledore and Instow.  You can still see the programme on ITV Player!


Wedding couple on ferry

North Devon-20130907-00035On 7 September 2013, local couple Darren Greener and Chloe Holding married then boarded our ferry Misty Blue for a honeymoon cruise – from Instow Quay to the North Devon Yacht Club and back! Darren and Chloe then joined their guests in the Yacht Club for their reception.





Ferry 130824


The second photo here is of Chloe and her friends two weeks earlier when they were out for the evening for their hen party. They joined us on a trip across the Torridge from Appledore to Instow – as you can see, suitably dressed for the occasion! 





Final ferry day 31 Oct 2012

wayfarer2-300x225The final day in 2012 for the Appledore Instow Ferry was wet and windy, very much like most of the summer. However despite the elements being against us we had a fantastic season and we passed all of our targets with ease. The totals for the year were: 15,239 passengers, 441 dogs, 201 bikes. This achievement is due to the dedication and support of our volunteers and skippers who worked through some awful weather plus the few days of summer. We believe we have brought the communities of Appledore and Instow together and provided a service that has benefited local businesses, walkers and cyclists on the South West Coast Path, holiday makers and of course local people.  The picture shows some of the volunteers at the Wayfarer Inn after the last shift.


Mark Horton visit Sept 2012



3 October saw the return of Professor Mark Horton from the BBC Coast Programme visiting Instow and Appledore.  He booked a ferry trip with his university students to view the Appledore Shipyard and Richmond Docks. 





World Crabbing Aug 2012



Wednesday 1 August saw the World Crabbing contest take place on Appledore Quay. Click on the picture and it shows Rory McGrath who had just dropped a crab from his net. The Ferry is bringing passengers from Instow to watch the competition.




Local author Aug 2012



Photo shows Devon Author Richard Small presenting a copy of his new book to the Appledore Instow Ferry. The book and the ferry have similarities, one transports you pleasantly and safely across a tidal river and the other transports you safely and pleasantly to another time and place. For details of his latest book visit Richard's web site at






First Anniversary Jun2012

4-June2-Large-300x200The reinstated Appledore Instow Ferry reached its first anniversary on 25 June 2012. It was a year ago that the first launch took place and since then the ferry team of willing volunteers and skippers has worked to provide a professional and reliable service between the two villages with only the bad weather causing a few missed days. With support from many sources including the lottery, local businesses and individuals we have achieved an astounding result of carrying just over 12,500 passengers in our first year. This is far beyond the expectations of anyone when we started and feedback from local people, holiday makers and messages posted to us on the web and Facebook all indicate the ferry is a much need resource for the two villages and has certainly brought the two communities of Appledore and Instow together. We hope to build on this success and look forward to seeing you on the ferry this year.


First 2 months update Jun 2011

4-June2-Large-300x200Well the first 2 months of our season has passed and what a fantastic start to the ferrying season. The new engine is perfect, smooth, quiet and powerful. The boat is looking good after the work over the winter. Our volunteers are back with us for another season and the weather has been reasonable so far with only a few days lost to high winds. In April we took 1300 passengers, the most travelling over the Easter week. In May we had just over 1500 passengers crossing the river. The first of the school trips took place with 30 pupils from Appledore school using the ferry all wearing lifejackets and having a great time.  June has now started with a fantastic day on June 4 with celebrations on Instow beach and the pictures tell the story of a record breaking 258 passengers taking the ferry in the evening


Village SOS April 2012

lottery-logoI am delighted to tell you that we have been successful with our application for the Village SOS Big Lottery funding programme. We have been selected as the lead South West project and have been awarded a conditional funding offer of £30,000. This will help us consolidate the provision of the service for the future and covers the purchase of a second vessel plus other essential equipment.  Ferry operations have started and although its evening tides over Easter we are already busy taking more than 200 passengers on our first two days. Hope to see you on board in the near future.