LIGHTS are so dark at one of Scotland's busiest island ferry terminals that state-owned Caledonian MacBrayne reported near-miss involving its staff as a vessel docked.

CalMac has issued a rare public attack on Argyll & Bute for putting the “resilience” of its second busiest service from Oban to Mull at risk

The criticism came after a local group on Mull uncovered emails in which CalMac repeatedly warned the local authority about the state of Craignure pier and how “the lack of lighting” made it difficult for staff to see the ropes being thrown over the side to tie the ferry up when it was dark.

A dossier of correspondence, obtained by the Mull and Iona Ferry Committee under Freedom of Information Laws, revealed concerns of a near-miss by a ship at Craignure due to the poor lighting.

The council changed the lights from LED to sodium, which makes the pier area darker, according to the ferry operator.

It follows an incident last month that saw the 55-year-old pier closed for a time after part of it fell off.

A CalMac spokesman said: "We have stressed to Argyll and Bute Council the issues we have with the condition of Craignure Pier on numerous occasions.

“As the main user of the pier, who contributes about £1.5 million every year through harbour fees, we do not feel the council sees these concerns as a priority. This is a