Which Plymouth leaders believe the city airport should be protected?
THE Herald is calling on city politicians and other leading figures to nail their colours to the mast over the future of the airport site.
This newspaper has made its position perfectly clear - the airport site must be protected from development to preserve it for a time when we will once again need an air link.
Now we are asking people in positions of power in this city to speak as clearly on the issue and say whether they believe the Roborough site should be protected from the bulldozers for the foreseeable future.
This is an issue which needs honesty and openness to help safeguard a cornerstone to any ambition for a better, more prosperous future. The people of Plymouth deserve to know what our politicians and leaders believe and can hold them to it.
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We have got the ball rolling by contacting some of the most prominent figures in the city and asking them the straightforward question: Should the land at Roborough be retained as an airport for the foreseeable future, or should development be allowed on the land?
Online at thisisplymouth we have published the names of those who have answered with a clear yes. It is far from being a comprehensive list and over the coming weeks we are calling on all councillors to add their name to the list and state their position.
Ultimately we will publish the full list of responses showing who has spoken clearly in favour of protecting the airport for the foreseeable future and who has not.
THE Herald is asking Plymouth’s political and business leaders to nail their colours to the mast over the fate of the City Airport.
The airport closed last December and its operators, Sutton Harbour Holdings, has published a development masterplan.
The Roborough site is protected from development until 2021 under Plymouth City Council’s core strategy, but Sutton Harbour wants that status to be reviewed as part of the Derriford and Seaton Area Action Plan.
The council says the long-term fate of the airport should be part of the wider Plymouth Plan, which will guide city developments to 2031.
The dispute will be settled by a Government inspector next Spring at a public examination into the Derriford and Seaton area action plan.
The Herald is asking the question: Should the land at Roborough be retained as an airport for the foreseeable future, or should development be allowed on the land?
The following people have already clearly spoken out in support of retaining the airport site.
We are calling on all councillors to answer this question - contact Keith Rossiter at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01752 765529.
Cllr Richard Ball (Con, Compton): Yes – we already have enough development in the north of the city for the infrastructure that is there.
Cllr Sally Bowie (Lab, St Budeaux): Absolutely, yes.
Cllr Ian Bowyer (Con, Eggbuckland): Yes, absolutely. I don’t want the council in future to say that there are no takers [of the airport] so we are going to develop it.
Cllr Lynda Bowyer (Con, Eggbuckland): Keep it as an airport.
Cllr Thomas Browne (Con, Southway): Yes. It has always been an airport and that’s the way it should stay.
Cllr Nigel Churchill (Con, Plymstock Dunstone): For the time being I would support retention.
Cllr Mark Coker (Lab, Devonport): We need to protect the land for the period we agreed to.
Cllr Jill Dolan (Con, Stoke): 100 per cent keep it as an airport. I’m a member of Viable [the group campaigning to save the airport].
Cllr Jonathan Drean (Con, Budshead): Absolutely yes. I feel very strongly that we need an airport for connectively and easy access.
Cllr Tudor Evans (Lab, Ham): Said in full council that it will be protected from development for at least nine years.
Cllr Mark Lowry (Lab, Honicknowle): Until every opportunity has been adequately explored it should be retained as land for an airport. There might come a stage in maybe ten years if nobody is interested.
In the meantime we have sufficient land to meet our needs for new homes and growth.
Cllr Patrick Nicholson (Con, Plympton St Mary): Yes. Keep it as an airport.
Cllr Vivien Pengelly (Con, Plymstock Dunstone): Yes, protect it. From day one I have always maintained both to officers and to the public that the airport should stay as airport land on any document that is being produced in the future because I firmly believe when times get better there will be someone out there who will be able to invest and bring back the airport.
Cllr Steven Ricketts (Con, Drake): I believe it should be retained as an airport for as long as possible.
Cllr Chaz Singh (Lab, Drake): In favour of keeping it for the next nine years, in line with Tudor Evans’s stated aim, and then deciding its fate through the Plymouth Plan.
Cllr David Stark (Con, Compton): Retain for the foreseeable future. The situation might change and an operator might be forthcoming.
Cllr Jon Taylor (Lab, Budshead): I am very keen to see the land kept for potentially an airport in the future.
Cllr George Wheeler (Lab, St Budeaux): Yes, keep it.
Cllr Kevin Wigens (Con, Plymstock Dunstone): Yes, definitely keep it.
Cllr Mike Wright (Lab, Moor View): We are against development there. We’re going to keep it going for the next nine years.
Alison Seabeck (Lab, MP for Plymouth Moor View): Yes. Keep it.
Gary Streeter (Con, MP for South West Devon): Yes, keep it.