Support Decreasing For Sunday Flying
Two years ago Clifford Freeman, the owner of Scilly Self Catering and St Mary’s Hall Hotel, backed the introduction of a seven-day air service.
And that was the view of the Council in October 2013, when members agreed by 14 votes to 2 to allow the airport to open on Sundays.
At the time it was felt that the move would boost the holiday market by allowing visitors flexibility in weekend breaks, which would allow them to return home in time for work on Monday.
In September 2013, the Council estimated that Sunday flying would cost the airport £82,000 annually but Tresco Estate Owner Robert Dorrien Smith calculated that an additional 5,000 passengers per year would cover those costs.
But Clifford says his experience of recent Bank Holidays is that people leave on the Monday, rather than travelling back on the Tuesday.
That’s reflected in his occupancy this forthcoming weekend and he fears that visitors would adopt the same approach if Sunday flights started, travelling back on Sunday instead.
That could leave empty beds at the end of the weekend.
Clifford doesn’t think that the summertime Sunday sailings have the same impact in discouraging a Sunday night stay, because of the journey time.
Earlier this year, the Steamship Company Chief Executive Rob Goldsmith said he was still open to the idea of Sunday flying but stakeholders would have to commit to supporting it.
And the loss of support by one of the islands’ biggest operators could now mean the seven-day services will be less likely.
If you’re traveling through Cornwall by train as part of your journey to and from Scilly this weekend, you’ll face disruption.
A three-day strike by First Great Western railway workers will go ahead after talks failed to reach an agreement.
The RMT union members will walk out tomorrow in a dispute over the introduction of the new high-speed trains. The train operator says they don’t intend to shed positions when the new service is introduced.
The RAC expects an extra 14 million vehicles on mainland roads this weekend because of the strike and due to the falling cost of petrol.