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Business community overwhelmingly support Option A

posted Feb 22, 2010, 6:25 AM by Richard Cliffe
Press release from 'Future Penzance' 22 Feb 10 (sent to Cornishman & West Briton)

Businesses from all parts of the Penzance economy have backed the Facebook campaign to see a yes vote in favour of the Option A harbour scheme at a critical Council meeting on March 8.

Over 85 businesses have signed up their support, ranging from builders and accountants to software companies and estate agents, furniture shops to car showrooms - as well as many well-known Penzance cafes, bars and nightclubs.
And in addition well over 90% of tourism-related businesses in the local Penzance and District Tourism Associations are backing the proposal.

"March 8 is decision day for Penzance," said Mike Adams, owner of the Zero Lounge and one of the organisers of the campaign group Future Penzance. "It will be Option A or Falmouth. The Council has already voted for Falmouth as the preference if Option A fails. It's time to get real about this."

Council minutes from the 25 January meeting state clearly that "Falmouth is the fallback option if Option A is not approved." Half a million pounds is being spent by the Council to work up the Falmouth option should councillors reject Option A.

"Support on our facebook page A Future for Penzance is growing all the time" said Adams. "We have well over 3,300 supporters now, three times as many as opponents of the scheme. And we have the overwhelming backing of the business community. We also know that hundreds of letters of support have already been sent to the council, with many more to come. The vast majority of new letters being added to the list by planners are in favour of Option A."
In addition there has been a petition carried out by True Friends of Penzance with 3,175 signing in favour.
Both groups campaigning for a yes vote are highly critical of the 'Option PZ' proposal due to be revealed this weekend after weeks of secrecy. Tim Dwelly of Live/Work Network, another organiser of Future Penzance, claimed that "this should more accurately be called Pipedream PZ. It is viewed by Penzance businesses as a blatant last ditch attempt to scupper Option A on March 8. The idea that we should put our faith in a cobbled together scheme which has no support from funders at the Council or in Whitehall is ridiculous.

"Andrew George has told me in person that he would be happy if Option A went ahead, that any Penzance option will do. Yet in public he seems somehow unable to say this, perhaps for fear of the reaction from the Friends group which is campaigning to stop Option A. We think it is extremely unwise for this new pipedream idea to be put forward before the vote on March 8. Only Option A can secure the ferry link to the Scillies from Penzance."

Future Penzance is calling on opponents of Option A to state clearly whether they will accept the result of the vote on March 8. "The town is divided. We think it would be in everyone's interests to put this matter to rest once the decision has been taken," said Mike Adams. "Will the Friends of Penzance Harbour join us in this pledge for the sake of the town?"

Michael Adams

Richard Cliffe,
Feb 22, 2010, 6:30 AM