“I couldn’t believe it”: Ferry employee travels 500 miles to help passenger who missed the bus on vacation


A Wightlink ferry employee has been hailed as a hero after traveling more than 500 miles to save a passenger’s vacation.

Hilary Spink had missed her coach in Portsmouth after traveling from Ryde to the Isle of Wight and returned home in tears thinking she had missed her long-awaited vacation.

When Mark Mitchell found her, he picked her up after his shift and drove her to Halifax, Yorkshire.

Mark said: “My heart melted when I heard that Hilary had missed her vacation because it had already been canceled twice due to Covid.

“We had discussed this while sailing to Portsmouth and I was upset to learn that she was going home instead of having fun in Yorkshire. I thought about how disappointed my elderly parents would be, if that was happening to them, and I wanted to make it right for her. ”



The trip to Halifax on December 6 lasted over five hours, stopping for refreshments along the way, and Mark’s round trip was over 500 miles.

The 70-year-old former boarding school nurse said: “I underestimated the time it would take to walk from the terminal to the pick-up point. By the time I was even out of train station and saw what time it was. It was clear that I had missed it. I felt terribly upset and also annoyed at myself.

“I am really looking forward to this vacation and I was so disappointed and sad that I had to turn around and go home.

The Wightlink St Clare car ferry crosses the Solent. Credit: PA Archives / PA Images

“When I got back to Wightlink they came over to see what was wrong. I told them what had happened and that’s when Mark offered to drive me. I couldn’t believe it. C was such a surprise and I did. I don’t think someone so young would do this for someone my age. ”

Wightlink CEO Keith Greenfield said: “I was delighted to hear Mark step in to help this client and delighted the story ended well.

“. lady in distress. ”


About Lillian Coomer

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