Local Enterprise Partnership Says Scilly Should ‘Not Be Short Changed’ Following Brexit Vote
The Chief Executive of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership has called on the government to make sure the islands are “not short changed as a result of the referendum result.”
Sandra Rothwell says the LEP will be working to ensure the current EU funding programme, worth around £500m, doesn’t change over the next two years while the UK’s exit from the EU is negotiated.
Scilly has been a big beneficiary of EU funding over the last decade, with European Regional Develop Fund money being used for projects such as the regeneration of Porthcressa, the airport and runway refurbishments and the construction of work units at Porthmellon.
The project to bring superfast broadband to the islands, via an undersea fibreoptic cable, was made possible through European funding.
Plans are also being put in place to use EU funding for an ambitious renewable energy project – the ‘Smart Islands’ scheme.
On Thursday, Scilly’s population voted to remain in the EU by 803 votes to 621.
But our larger neighbour Cornwall, which has also benefited from several rounds of EU structural funding, voted for Brexit by a majority of 56%.
Sandra says the funding for Cornwall and Scilly was allocated in recognition of “the very real needs of our economy to support growth and create jobs.”
And she says the exit campaign pledged to match it at least pound for pound to 2020 in the event of a leave vote.
Sandra says the LEP will work with the business community, Cornwall Council, the Council of the Isles of Scilly and local MPs to maintain investment at EU levels.