MP's Column

Last week our weekly papers and news programmes covered the welcome news of plans to reinstate the helicopter link between Penzance and the Isles of Scilly.

Months of careful planning and consideration has led to this genuine commitment to reinstate this important service and I am in full support because it is part of what I would describe as an overhaul of transport infrastructure in West Cornwall.

Years of under-investment has depressed our economy and has frustrated efforts to increase skilled and well-paid employment opportunities. In the near future we can expect to hear that train journeys between West Cornwall and London will become significantly quicker.

Plans to invest in Penzance Harbour are progressing and I personally have committed to pursuing significant improvements to the A30 west of Camborne to Penzance.

Good transport links are essential because our transport infrastructure is under considerable pressure. Good transport links are also essential to ensure that we remain 'open for business' and we can deliver the high-paid, high-skilled jobs West Cornwall needs.

For more information and to communicate any views you have about the proposed helicopter link please go to

I enjoyed the rare treat of opening the St Martin Craft and Horticulture Show on Saturday. There was plenty to see and hear including over 1,000 exhibits, the Cober Valley Accordion Band and Cornwall Search and Rescue, who kindly hoisted me up into a tree (and seemed to enjoy it immensely!). This small community put on a show  that attracted people from far and wide and it was, once again, a great success.

Another great success (although it did not feel so at the time) was this year's 24-hour walk around West Cornwall to raise awareness about autism and funds to provide young Coco (from St Ives) access to the ABA therapy (find out more by searching Coco's Autism Journey). I did 25 of the total 60 miles. I had a full diary during the day of the walk but the truth is I'm not sure that I could have done the full distance. Hats off to those who did!

Derek Thomas
Member of Parliament for St Ives