TALKS to secure the future of Condor Ferries in Weymouth are ongoing, councillors were told.

Members of the Weymouth and Portland management committee spoke about the issue at their first ‘new-look’ meeting of the year.

The council has to come up with £10million to upgrade a berth suitable for a new super-ferry Condor Ferries wants to buy.

Investigations have been going on to secure the money, but the council has also approached other ferry companies to identify an alternative operator if Condor leaves town.

The management committee heard that the council had approached five ferry operators and had received a response from one so far.

Committee chairman Cllr Mike Byatt said he realised there was a lot of public interest in Condor and said that discussions were ongoing.

Members heard that Condor was in talks with the Channel Islands regarding its operating licence and that the company would not be buying a new, larger boat until a decision had been reached. Councillors heard the boat Condor could be looking to buy is currently ‘laid-up’ in Australia but ‘available’ and that it would need to be fitted out and do sea trials.

Cllr Byatt said he and new authority chief executive Matt Prosser would be looking to talk to the Channel Islands representatives.