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FOPH and MP struggle to find an alternative to Option A

posted Feb 1, 2010, 5:39 PM by Richard Cliffe

Our MP, Andrew George, set up a meeting at St Clare, Penzance, on 1 Feb 10 attended by representatives of the interested parties.  Despite the presence of ‘matter’ and ‘anti-matter’ (FOPH on one side and Chamber of Commerce/PDTA/True Friends of Penzance & IoS on the other) the meeting was skilfully conducted and without rancour. It lasted 3.5 hours.


Andrew George clearly understood the predicament he was in.  "It is Option A or Falmouth or X - what is X".  He quickly identified that X needed to be a solution within the scope of the existing HRO because anything else was irrelevant to the decision making process (a new HRO takes 3 years to approve).


The MP’s predicament was made starker by the announcement during the meeting that the planning consent application had been re-submitted with a 3 week consultation period (the same or very similar application to one refused earlier by 12 votes to 7).


Having invited a lot of vested interests to be represented, he had to let them speak.  There were some interesting presentations but most dealt with proposals outside of the scope of the existing HRO.  Keeping the focus on solutions achievable within the approved HRO proved difficult.   Our MP reminded the meeting that the project is about a link to Scilly rather than Penzance and it was not just Penzance that lost out if the project did not go ahead.

That all parties could meet and have a useful discussion about the future of the Harbour was a  positive outcome.  Whether a credible alternative to Option A could be found was another matter. 

 There will be a follow on meeting on 2 Feb 10 at which ‘True Friends’ will be represented.