Airport petition to be debated by councillors
A PETITION calling for State ownership of Plymouth City Airport will be debated by councillors next Monday.
The petition was signed by more than 37,000 people, well above the threshold of 5,000 signatures, which automatically triggers a debate at the next full city council meeting.
The airport was closed last December by the operator, Sutton Harbour Holdings.
The company has a 150-year lease on the land and has put forward a masterplan to build homes, shops and businesses on the site.
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Council leader Tudor Evans, who was handed the bundles of petitions last month by campaigner Maddi Bridgeman, said: "A lot of time and effort went into getting all these signatures and people feel very strongly about what has happened to the airport.
"I do too. Throughout my life as a councillor for this city I have tried to keep the airport open and what has been allowed to happen is a huge shame for the city.
"There is a lot of effort and passion involved in this issue and we will try to do it justice in our debate."
The petition reads: "Plymouth City Airport is a vital hub for the South West but it is due to close, like so many other UK airports to satisfy property developers. We need flexibility as well as investment in our transport infrastructure.
"Regional airports offer much greater flexibility than trains for both domestic and international travel. With investment and the right management, Plymouth City Airport would be profitable. The state should take ownership."
The petition organiser is allowed five minutes to present the petition and put forward their case to the meeting of the full city council.