Spending plans to replace CalMac’s ageing fleet of small ferries have been pushed back, saving £41m.

Finance Secretary Shona Robison advised MSPs the small vessels replacement plan had been “reprofiled” as had harbour improvements at Ardrossan and Gourock.

Ms Robison told the BBC it meant spending would now fall in the next financial year.

The ageing small vessels fleet includes a ferry which is now 47 years old.

Earlier this month, the vessels director at ferries procurement agency CMAL told a meeting the procurement was due to start within weeks, with the first vessel to be delivered in the autumn of 2026.

But in a letter to Holyrood’s finance committee last week, first reported by Scotland on Sunday, Ms Robison outlined a series of changes to spending plans for this financial year.

She said the small vessels plans had been “reprofiled, allowing time to fully consider the business case work, vessels design criteria, and help ensure alignment of the related shore power and port improvement works”.

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