Pressure mounting to reopen Plymouth City Airport

It’s been closed for nearly a decade but Plymouth business leaders say they would fly from Plymouth airport if it was reopened.

A straw poll on Twitter found 78% of respondents wanted flights to resume from a reopened aerodrome.

And dozens of business leaders sent messages on social media with the majority saying they would back the resumption of services from what was once Plymouth City Airport.

The airstrip was closed in 2011 when long-lease-holder Sutton Harbour Group Plc (SHG) triggered a so-called “Armageddon clause” enabling it to stop flights if the aerodrome was deemed uneconomic.

The Derriford site has been disused ever since, and SHG now wants to turn it into a mixed-use housing-led “garden suburb” estate called Plym Cale, though planning inspectors have stalled development of the site until 2024 via the Plymouth and South West Devon Joint Local Plan.

But now Cllr Tudor Evans, leader of freehold-owner Plymouth City Council, has said he would like to see the site reopened, with finance from the Government.

And businesses have backed the call.

Stuart Elford, chief executive of Devon and Plymouth Chamber of Commerce, said: “It is fair to say that numerous businesses would like to see it reopen.

“If a sustainable and viable plan is put forward then I would support it. It may be some way off until scheduled flights return, but general aviation, military and business jets etc would be a good start. “

Brett Phaneuf, president of Submergence Group, which runs Plymouth submarine manufacturer M Subs, said he would like to see: “The airport open so that we could fly to London City Airport, or elsewhere in the UK and EU.”

He added: “It would be a great way to back up the rail-line service as well. Great to see this being seriously discussed. I'd use it almost weekly if it were to reopen.”

Darren Lawson, owner of Lawson Estate Agents, said: “This would be a huge step for the city’s business credibility and viability. I’d certainly be a regular patron.”

Sarah Greep, who runs Janner Jam, said: “It's just crazy not to have one in or at least nearer to Plymouth than Exeter and Newquay.”

Social media expert Ash Mashhadi said: “I used it for business trips to London when it was open and would again if it reopened. So long as the cost wasn’t prohibitive this time.”

Quality consultant Allan Proudfoot said: “If Plymouth intends to attract high-profile international business then an airport is one of the checkboxes that competing locations will have filled.”
I used to use the flights quite a lot, flying not only to London but Scotland as well.
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Staff member
They need to make up ;their minds one way or the other. If it's not going to be re-opening then get rid of it.
I would prefer if Sutton Holdings was kicked out and the airport taken back from them. I can see they are waiting for it to get past the point of repair so they can build houses on it and make a big big profit out of something that doesn't belong to them.

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