By Will Lethbridge
The proposal to reinstate a regular helicopter service between the Isles of Scilly and the mainland has moved a step closer to becoming a reality after recommendations were made to Councillors at Cornwall Council to vote in favour of the initiative.
Tom Matthews, Head of Marketing for Tresco Estate spoke to Will on Monday's Morning Show and said: “We're in a really exciting phase of the project now, we're awaiting a decision by the planning authority. By Thursday, we're hoping early afternoon we should have a answer as to whether we have planning permission to build the heliport which will be the main keystone of reinstating the helicopter link between the mainland and Scilly."
Despite the recommendations, the final vote is still down to the Councillors who will vote on the proposal this Thursday.
With regards to this matter Tom said: "The planning process is a very complicated one. We submit all our reports, things like environmental reports, social economic reports and things like that. That is then assessed by the by the Cornwall Council Planning Officers. They take into consideration all of those reports and any representations made by the public. From here the Council Planning Officers come out with a recommendation which is what they recommend to the Councillors themselves and what should be done."
Tom later added: "What the Planning Officers have done in this situation is whole heartedly recommend the scheme is given the go ahead."
On the basis that Councillors vote in favour we could see a new Heliport in Penzance and regular helicopter service in operation by spring 2018.
The Initiative, which is being spearheaded by Robert Dorrien-Smith was first announced at the beginning of September. Since then the feedback from members of the public in the Isles of Scilly and in West Cornwall have been for the most part in favour.
According to Tom the proposal for a new heliport to be built at Jelbert Way in Penzance, just opposite from where the old heliport once was, has had highest number of responses for a planning application on record.
We’ll have the reaction to the decision on Friday’s Morning Show. You can hear the full interview with Tom below.