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10.12.04
Results published for harbour consultations

Results released today from the public consultations for development proposals at Newlyn and Penzance Harbours show an encouraging level of support. The public consultation took place in the Fishermen's Mission at Newlyn on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd July and in "Space..." at Penzance on 9 and 10 July 2004. Comment sheets had to be returned by 31st July. The technical investigations are majority invested by Objective One; SWRDA and Penwith District Council.

267 people attended the Penzance and Promenade Consultation and 100/82 comment sheets returned (respectively). An overwhelming majority (84%) agreed with the need to improve on existing facilities for harbour businesses/users and the lifeline link to the Isles of Scilly in and around Penzance Harbour. There was less agreement on where these facilities should be located but 57% preferred development on the southern side of Lighthouse Pier.

Nigel Horwell (Penzance Regeneration Manager) explains, "Since the consultation, we have explored this option with our consultant, Hyder Consulting (UK) Ltd. There are obvious advantages with this option in that it offers the location of a new passenger terminal and cargo handling facilities adjacent to a permanent, all-weather berth for the Scillonian. However, it would be built in deeper water and hence would cost £10,000,000 more than a similar facility located to the south of the wet dock (the south pier option). The development is more closely integrated with the existing townscape and it represents something that the investors believe offers better value for money. Hence we've gone for the south pier option."

Analysis of the Consultation results reveal that this South Pier option attracted a support rate of 43% with development of an inner harbour option coming a poor third (30%).

Comments received concerning the desirability of a beach along the Promenade showed a high level of support (81%). Opinion on how this might be achieved was more evenly split than for Penzance Harbour with the creation of a high level beach along the entire face of the Promenade wall coming out on top at 47%. This would need large offshore rock breakwaters in order to prevent it being washed out into the Bay. These would be visible even at high tide and the total scheme would cost £8,800,000 at today's prices. Nigel notes that: "Defra is responsible for Coastal Protection and Flood Prevention and their policy for this stretch of coastline is to 'Hold the line'. In order to create a beach we would have to persuade them to 'advance the line'. However, there is undoubted economic regeneration potential in creating a beach and Hyder's are exploring this to arrive at a value-for-money argument which we hope will be attractive to other potential investors." The recent storm is not thought to have changed Defra's strategic position. "The seawall did a sterling job in standing up to the continual pounding and all credit must go to the engineers who designed and built it," said Peter Verran, Penwith's Operational Service's Engineer.

425 people were recorded as coming through the door of the Fishermen's Mission to look at the proposals for both Newlyn and Penlee. 230 comment sheets were completed, the vast majority being residents of Newlyn. Tony Woodhams (Newlyn Fisheries Industry Officer) said: "This is an excellent response rate and confirms the high level of interest to the proposals contained in the Newlyn Strategy." 68% of responses to the question, "Do you support the idea that these proposals are essential to secure the future of Newlyn and the fishing industry?", either strongly supported or supported the proposals. Support for the modified proposals for the fish market; marina facilities and boat maintenance facilities at Sandy Cove were even higher (65 – 76%). Hyder is continuing to work with the Newlyn Pier & Harbour Commissioners on a Business Viability Study for developing the harbour. Ian George, Hyder's Project Manager, notes: "Because of the high cost of developing the present Newlyn Strategy, we have used Value Management principles to explore what other options are available to the Commissioners. As a result, some changes are being proposed which are at present being consulted upon within the industry."

A final exhibition of the proposals will be staged on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th January 2005 in St John's Hall, Penzance for Penzance Harbour and the Promenade. This will be followed by an exhibition in the Fishermen's Mission later in January/February on the updated proposals for Penlee Quarry. Whether the revised Newlyn proposals will be ready for this latter exhibition will be "touch-and-go", says Tony Woodhams, Newlyn Fisheries Project Officer.

More information on the Technical Investigations (including Penlee Quarry) can be found on the website: www.pnpteam.com.

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Editor's notes:

 

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Clare Morgan
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439

cmorgan@cornwall.gov.uk

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