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Cornwall risks losing out in economic partnership – MP

By This is Cornwall  |  Posted: August 14, 2010

Andrew George

Andrew George

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An economic body serving the whole of the Westcountry risks leaving Cornwall "strait jacketed", an MP has warned.

Local authorities this week revealed they are working up plans for a "Devonwall" Local Economic Partnership (LEP) to lobby for Government funding for Torbay, Devon, Plymouth, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Under the proposals, a separate coalition between just Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly would work together on economic development on a day-to-day basis.

Ties between the two counties have been strongly opposed by some in Cornwall over fears the interests of the far South West will be neglected. In the late 1990s, campaigners were successful in severing the formal link between the two counties after Cornwall was denied hundreds of millions of pounds of European regeneration cash.

St Ives MP Andrew George has warned against returning to a Devonwall structure to "avoid being strait jacketed by others".

The Liberal Democrat said: "Cornwall has achieved more in economic development terms in the last decade since it achieved separation from Devon and secured Objective 1 – now Convergence – status than it had in the decades before, when it followed the 'Devonwall' agenda.

"Don't get me wrong. Cornwall should always seek to work in partnership with others whether in Plymouth or Portsmouth, Devon or Devizes, Torbay or Taunton, on an issue-by-issue and project-by-project basis.

"But we mustn't lose control to others. Cornwall and Scilly do best when we stand on our own two feet. We do worse when we become dependent upon others."

Stephen Gilbert, Lib Dem MP for St Austell and Newquay, also warned that Cornwall risked losing control of its own destiny as a result of the tie-up.

He said: "Over the last decade Cornwall has achieved so much to develop the local economy by working as one, rather than the 'Devonwall' that it used to be.

"Our county is unique in so many ways and we have exceptional issues affecting us and distinctive challenges ahead."

A final decision on which submissions have proved successful will be taken by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills.

The LEPs will take over some of the functions of the soon-to-be-abolished regional development agencies and bid for funding from a central Government pot.

Advocates of a body covering the entire peninsula say it will have a stronger voice when battling with other regions for money.

Cornwall councillor Alex Folkes had tabled a motion in favour of a partnership independent of Devon. It was unanimously supported by his counterparts.

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    youngcornwall, uk  |  August 16 2010, 1:24PM

    I am afraid West Cornwall has absolutely no effective representation. Jane Goodall, Marazion, Nr Penzance I would say with all this new blood coming into the area things should be looking a lot better for Cornwall. Too much of the same old clap trap like we get on here from some nats just shows they have not got the ingredients to represent anyone, and are just waiting for someone to come along and take them by the hand and lead them to what they think they want.

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    Paddy Trembath, Praa Sands  |  August 16 2010, 12:39PM

    Gary, Saltash wrote:- "Yawn" . You really must stop sitting up so late watching all the old films and repeats on "Once upon a time" TV Gary. Then you might just realise that other opinions are as valid as yours (some would argue more valid), and that you are not the fountain of all knowledge. . . youngcornwall, uk wrote:- "That is the sad thing Gary some think their situation is real and the County of Cornwall should be separated from all the other counties in England, thank goodness these people are few numbers." . It is a sad thing that there are a small number of people who ran away from Cornwall years ago, who think that they have a right to criticise those who stayed. Whats the weather like where you are youngcornwall?

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    Gary, Saltash  |  August 16 2010, 12:06PM

    I am afraid West Cornwall has absolutely no effective representation. Jane Goodall, Marazion, Nr Penzance And you are saying the rest of Cornwall does, come to think about it the entire south-west, the only disgrace are those that voted for Andrew George after he milked the tax payer for every penny he could lay his hands on. Of course a few see him as the subversive MK candidate within the ranks of a real party. People get what they vote for, I voted for Sheryll Murray and seem to have a drunk http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1293762/I-drunk-vote-Budget-confesses-Tories-Mark-Reckless.html Sheryll Murray, was allegedly rude to a parliamentary official after she, too, had been drinking on the terrace overlooking the Thames The extraordinary scenes came during a six-hour drinking session that lasted until 2.30am on Wednesday, involving dozens of MPs and their aides.

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    Gary, Saltash  |  August 16 2010, 12:04PM

    I am afraid West Cornwall has absolutely no effective representation. Jane Goodall, Marazion, Nr Penzance And you are saying the rest of Cornwall does, come to think about it the entire south-west, the only disgrace are those that voted for Andrew George after he milked the tax payer for every penny he could lay his hands on. Of course a few see him as the subversive MK candidate within the ranks of a real party. People get what they vote for, I voted for Sheryll Murray and seem to have a drunk http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1293762/I-drunk-vote-Budget-confesses-Tories-Mark-Reckless.html Sheryll Murray, was allegedly rude to a parliamentary official after she, too, had been drinking on the terrace overlooking the Thames The extraordinary scenes came during a six-hour drinking session that lasted until 2.30am on Wednesday, involving dozens of MPs and their aides.

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    Jane Goodall, Marazion, Nr Penzance  |  August 16 2010, 11:47AM

    Of course our MP Mr Andrew George wants Cornwall to break away from the rest of UK. He is basically a MK supporter but know he cannot get elected on that platform, so choses to become a wishy washy fence sitting Lib Dem. Thats is the only way he can continue his expenses claiming. His own party consider him "the enemy within", that's why he has absolutely no power and has been given no position of authority in the Coalition Government. He is the third longest serving Lib Dem MP, yet his own party do not trust him, when nearly half of all the Lid Dem MP's have Government posts. Even Julie Goldsworthy, who actually lost her seat, has been taken into the coalition Government. I am afraid West Cornwall has absolutely no effective representation. And what about the flip flop on VAT. I will stand up for keeping VAT at 17.5%, and when the finance bill vote comes, guess what. Mr Andrew George MP supports the budget. A disgrace to politics.

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    youngcornwall, uk  |  August 16 2010, 11:44AM

    Yawn Gary, Saltash That is the sad thing Gary some think their situation is real and the County of Cornwall should be separated from all the other counties in England, thank goodness these people are few numbers.

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    Gary, Saltash  |  August 16 2010, 10:41AM

    Yawn

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    Paddy Trembath, Praa Sands  |  August 16 2010, 10:07AM

    It's Ewing, Bobby Ewing. But thanks for confirming that you live in a world of fiction.

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    Gary, Saltash  |  August 16 2010, 8:56AM

    Quote Advocates of a body covering the entire peninsula say it will have a stronger voice when battling with other regions for money. Reminds me of that wonderful Stanley Holloway movie passport to pimilico The infuriated British government retaliates by breaking off negotiations. Burgundy is cut off, like the western sectors of post-war Berlin, and the residents are invited to "immigrate" to England. But the Burgundians are "a fighting people" and, though the children are evacuated, the adults stand fast. As Mrs. Pemberton (Betty Warren) puts it, "We've always been English and we'll always be English; and it's precisely because we are English that we're sticking up for our right to be Burgundians!" With negotiations successfully concluded, an outdoor banquet is prepared to welcome Burgundy back into the fold. Just as Big Ben strikes the hour of reunification, the Burgundians realise they truly are back in England when a torrential downpour sends everyone scurrying for cover. And Bobby Ewins awakes to find it was all a dream

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    PTG, Bodmin  |  August 15 2010, 3:19PM

    Sorry the page kept stalling when I submitted comment

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