Newquay & St Columb local news

Reform UK makes it six out of six in Cornwall

By Julia Penhaligon The first day of the general election campaign has brought a significant boost to the chances of Cornwall electing a Labour MP for the first time...

Asylum-seekers? Rwanda? No-one’s asked us, say Newquay Airport

By Peter Tremayne Newquay Airport has said it has had no request from the government to facilitate flights to Rwanda for the forced deportation of asylum-seekers. Newquay is one...

Ley lines: Cornwall Council’s “temporary” traffic rules at spaceport are to be made permanent

By Peter Tremayne The “temporary” double yellow lines painted around Newquay airport in November 2022, in a panic-stricken attempt to facilitate Richard Branson’s rocket launch the following January, are...

Politics: always room for more fruitcake in St Austell and Newquay

By Julia Penhaligon Any threat that Reform UK might pose to Conservative MPs in Cornwall at the next election should be seen in the context of what is happening...

Chasing dreams: Newquay spaceport watches nervously as new cargo plane prepares to blast off

By Peter Tremayne A date has been set for the first launch of a new space shuttle which might – one day – land at Newquay. Sierra Nevada’s Dream...

Fingers crossed: County Hall waits to find out the latest estimated cost of the Mid Cornwall Metro

By Peter Tremayne The Mid Cornwall Metro railway project has entered a critical phase of detailed design work, which should allow for a more detailed assessment of the costs....

Blue sky thinking? How to make lots of money out of Newquay Airport

By Peter Tremayne It’s not in the sales brochure, but one of the potential future uses for Newquay Airport could see it propelled to centre-stage in a national political...

A flop on the ocean waves: Newquay’s surf “not good enough” for national champs

By Rashleigh MacFarlane This weekend’s national surfing championship, due to take place at Newquay’s Watergate Bay, has been postponed because of the conditions. Surfing England said the English National...

Newquay Airport privatisation is clear for take-off

By Peter Tremayne The future of Newquay Airport will be made at a Cornwall Council cabinet meeting on 12th June. Any chance that the decision would be taken by...

Are Cornwall’s Tories heading for defeat over airport privatisation?

By Peter Tremayne Today’s meeting of Cornwall Council’s economic scrutiny committee could upset the ruling administration’s plans to privatise Newquay Airport. The Conservative’s theoretical 6-5 majority  is vulnerable because...

Newquay Airport set to cost local taxpayers at least £7.5 million next year

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall’s taxpayers will need to find at least £7.5 million to subsidise Newquay Airport next year, councillors heard this morning. The current £4 million annual subsidy...

Newquay Airport: will it still be there in 2034?

By Peter Tremayne Scrutiny councillors have an opportunity today (Tuesday) to learn more about hitherto-secret plans to privatise Newquay Airport. Cornwall Council has spent nearly three years, and hundreds...

The Mid Cornwall Metro: a solution in search of a problem?

By Roger French Mid Cornwall Metro is a £56.8 million project providing a new hourly Coast to Coast link with direct trains running between Newquay, Par, St Austell, Truro, Penryn...

That’s the way the money goes: if it’s Thursday, it must be Bremmen

By Peter Tremayne Newquay spaceport’s world tour has arrived in Germany, just in time for a paper-dart throwing competition. Cornwall’s taxpayers have helped sponsor Europe’s first “Spaceplane Summit” in...

Motorists get that sinking feeling as A39 closes between St Columb and Indian Queens

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The main A39 eastbound from Halloon to Highgate - St Columb Road to Indian Queens – has been closed due to a depression in the carriageway. ...

End of the runway? Newquay Airport might have only ten more years

By Peter Tremayne Aviation at Newquay Airport could be forced to operate without a subsidy in only ten years, according to an official update of Cornwall Council’s plans to...

EXCLUSIVE: the curious case of the Corserv restructuring which is creating lots of extra work for someone

By Peter Tremayne The personnel department at Corserv has been plunged into an unprecedented paper-chase as it tries to transfer hundreds of Cornwall Council workers from one department to...

More rocks collapse at Whipsiderry cliffs, Newquay, posing questions over proposed property development

By Rashleigh MacFarlane There has been another cliff fall at Whipsiderry, Newquay, where property developers want to build second homes. More rocks crumbled and fell to the beach on...

Wheels down: future of Newquay Airport will be decided on 12th June

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall Council’s cabinet will rule on the future of Newquay airport on 12th June.  Airport bosses had previously suggested the decision about privatisation would be taken...

Newquay’s Hotel Bristol: money talks, as town council abandons threat of Judicial Review

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The demolition of Newquay’s Narrowcliff Hotel Bristol and its replacement with nearly 200 apartments looks set to go ahead after the town council decided to withdraw...

Proposed beach home dubbed “alien intrusion” by parish council

By Lee Trewhela A plan to build a modern six-bedroom house overlooking a Cornish beach has been dubbed an “alien intrusion” by the local parish council. An application to...

Newquay jet prang was caused by leaving the handbrake on

By Peter Tremayne A private jet crash-landed at Newquay airport last year because the pilot had left the handbrake on, according to an Air Accident Investigation Branch report. Other...

Air passengers flying Newquay-Gatwick must continue to separate liquids from baggage

By Peter Tremayne Passengers flying between Newquay and Gatwick will continue having to separate liquids from their baggage as both airports have failed to install modern security scanners before...

Newquay Airport privatisation: “viable bids are now progressing through due diligence”

By Peter Tremayne The future of Newquay Airport looks set to be determined at a full meeting of Cornwall Council on 21st May.  This is also the annual meeting...

Trewes Kernow: Cornish Sands holiday firm will make us all filthy rich

By April Prime The new Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Economic Forum is working on its first project – the creation of a package holiday company to tempt...

Cornwall’s spaceport: the never-ending world tour continues

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall’s taxpayers have found a novel use for their cash – paying for a super-soaraway “space summit” in Germany. Cornwall’s spaceport is one of the sponsors...

Mid Cornwall Metro: did we mention this is an election year?

The boys are back in town: Transport Secretary Mark Harper joins St Austell and Newquay MP Steve Double on the £60 million Mid Cornwall Metro campaign trail, looking for...

New face at Newquay airport

By Peter Tremayne Simon Ashby, a professor of financial services and risk management, has joined the board of Newquay airport. Dr Ashby has been a member of the Corserv...

Is this the launch of Cornwall’s Tory farewell closing-down sale?

By Lee Trewhela and Julia Penhaligon With fewer than 14 months before they next face the voters, Cornwall Council’s ruling Conservative administration has been asked if it is “playing...

Cornwall’s Tories set their face against a tourist tax, deciding instead to tax local residents to help tourism

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Cornwall’s taxpayers will have to fund a “more active leadership role” for the tourist industry, following a County Hall decision today (Wednesday.) In a move which...

If you’re going to Newquay, don’t fall over on Wednesdays or Thursdays

By Anne North Newquay’s minor injury unit is to close on Wednesdays and Thursdays due to staff shortages. Health chiefs say the move is only a temporary measure but...

EXCLUSIVE: Planning and property development – how it works in Cornwall

By Julia Penhaligon Cornwall Council’s strategic director for the economy, Phil Mason, has been asked to explain a confidential letter he wrote to a property developer extending his support...

We’ll give you a tenner for it: the Newquay airport bid that Cornwall Council doesn’t want to talk about

By Peter Tremayne A businessman has offered to buy Newquay airport for £10.  Captain Peter Elliott, a former helicopter pilot, is leading a consortium which wants Cornwall Council to...

Back to the future: Cornwall’s Tories duck the opportunity to seek a tourism tax, opting instead to take money from local taxpayers to fund a 1970s-style Tourist Board

By Graham Smith Cornwall Council should take “an active leadership role” in the Local Visitor Economy Partnership (LVEP), according to an official County Hall report coming to next week’s...

Failure to launch: has the departure of Newquay airport been delayed?

By Peter Tremayne Speculation is growing that the future of Newquay airport may not be decided for several months, after a two-year search for a private investor has failed...

A blank cheque: no-one knows how much the Mid Cornwall Metro is going to cost, but now we do know who is paying for it

By Peter Tremayne The development of any Mid Cornwall Metro (MCM) train service between Newquay and Falmouth will have to be on an “emerging costs” basis, Network Rail has...

Planning officer approves proposal for dramatic change to Newquay’s coastline – without a vote

 By Lee Trewhela One of the most controversial planning applications in Cornwall in recent times – a proposal to demolish a historic hotel in Newquay and replace it with...

Labour selects Noah Law to contest St Austell and Newquay

By Julia Penhaligon The Labour Party has selected its Parliamentary candidate for the St Austell and Newquay constituency. Noah Law, an economic development specialist from Lostwithiel, was selected in...

Councillors reject plans for Healey’s Cyder solar farm

By Rashleigh MacFarlane A controversial solar farm in Cornwall has been refused planning permission on the casting vote of the committee chairman. Officials had recommended approval of a six-acre...

That’s the way the money goes: would you like to ride in my £165,000 virtual Mid Cornwall Metro balloon?

By Julia Penhaligon A marketing video attempting to stir enthusiasm for Cornwall’s Mid Cornwall Metro railway project has cost nearly £165,000. The video, which was part of a “virtual...

EXCLUSIVE: “confidential” meeting to discuss future of Newquay Airport

By Peter Tremayne The 11 members of Cornwall Council’s economy scrutiny committee have been called to a confidential meeting at Newquay Airport tomorrow (Friday.)   The meeting could have profound...

Newquay Airport: it’s all cloak and daggers as County Hall races to the end of its privatisation runway

By Peter Tremayne A curious item has appeared on the agenda for next week’s meeting of a Cornwall Council scrutiny committee, proposing to expel the press and public so...

Another MOU but still no sign of take-off, as Newquay’s “Sex Bomb” counts down to next year’s flight to the Moon

By Peter Tremayne The company which has taken over the building once used by Cornwall’s aviation museum has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a high-tech firm in Manchester....

EXCLUSIVE: Operation Corduroy – what it means to the privatisation of Newquay airport

By Peter Tremayne County Hall has tried to explain why it called its proposed privatisation of Newquay airport “Operation Corduroy” – a codename not immediately obvious to prospective investors...

Project Corduroy: we will soon find out if airport privatisation plan is as pants as it sounds

By Peter Tremayne An extraordinary meeting of Cornwall Council’s economy scrutiny committee has been scheduled for Tuesday 19th March, amid much speculation that it has been called to hear...

House of Commons speaker still in difficulty over Palestine, as another of Cornwall’s MPs tells him to go

By Julia Penhaligon St Austell and Newquay MP Steve Double has added his name to the growing list of those who want the Speaker of the House of Commons...

I haven’t got a magic wand, says the man trying to find anyone who might want to invest in Newquay airport

By Peter Tremayne It is now looking increasingly likely that Newquay airport will not, after all, be privatised.  Councillors think the airport will probably remain in public ownership enjoying...

Just a minute: stop me if you’ve heard this one before

By Peter Tremayne Members of a County Hall scrutiny committee are scratching their heads over the just-published draft minutes of their previous meeting – which once again fail to...

EXCLUSIVE: the magic bus stop – a sign of the times at Newquay airport, as the curious case of the hazardous chemicals on the edge of the runway leaves leading councillors with red faces

By Peter Tremayne A bus stop at Newquay’s aerohub business park has been moved more than 600 feet to a safe distance from a hangar used to store highly...

That’s the way the money goes: Cornwall Council pays £20,000 to write begging letters to the European Space Agency

By Peter Tremayne County Hall has awarded £20,000 to Space Professionals, a Truro firm of “independent consultants with genuine deep expertise across the space sector” to pitch for grants...

Boardmasters’ bosses hope to avoid the traffic chaos of previous years

By Lee Trewhela One of the major routes to the Newquay Boardmasters festival – which always leads to congestion – will be completely changed this year to allow only...

That’s the way the money goes: County Hall dreams of high-tech drones

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall Council has just awarded itself £632,000 of the government’s Shared Prosperity Fund so as to stimulate the data, space and aerospace industrial sectors. The decision,...

Council grants Boardmasters licence for bigger-than-ever 58,000 crowd

By Lee Trewhela The team behind Boardmasters – the largest music festival in Cornwall and one of the biggest in the UK – has said it has always acted...

Parallel lines: County Hall won’t say how the public responded when asked about spaceport’s “temporary” traffic restriction

By Peter Tremayne The “public consultation” about temporary double-yellow lines painted on the road around Newquay airport will have to remain secret until Cornwall Council decides whether or not...

Is Newquay spaceport really poised to announce a new launch partner?

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall’s spaceport has said it hopes to announce a new “launch partner” next month. The ambition was revealed to a meeting of the Newquay Airport Consultative...

Police hunt Boardmasters rapists

By Harold Callahan Police have said a teenage girl was raped at the Newquay Boardmasters festival in August 2022. Detectives have now have issued an e-fit image as part...

“Bedlam” as parish council hears of threats to “let’s take this outside” during heated debate about massive new tourism development

By Rashleigh MacFarlane A parish council meeting had to be abandoned last night (Wednesday) as furious local residents demanded they could not be excluded from witnessing a decision about...

Mid Cornwall Metro is here! County Hall’s train set now has a website

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall Council’s £60 million gamble on a new rail link between Newquay and Falmouth now has a website: midcornwallmetro.com. The launch of the site is the...

Newquay’s Greens vote to raise council tax in bid to save local services

By Julia Penhaligon A curious coalition of Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat councillors in Newquay have united to criticise the Green Party-led town council over its proposed budget. Newquay...

What a stitch up: how Project Corduroy has already cost Cornwall’s taxpayers nearly £1 million in pursuit of a Newquay airport investment partner

By Peter Tremayne Estate agents and lawyers have already pocketed £800,000 in their so far unsuccessful attempt to privatise Newquay airport. Details of the County Hall spending have never...

Smoke on the water: talk of reviving an airport on the other side of the River Tamar is not helping Newquay’s quest for a sweetheart

By Peter Tremayne The search for a private investor to share the risks of running Newquay airport has been further complicated by political developments outside of Cornwall. Plymouth City...

To err is human, but to really foul things up you need a Conservative campaign co-ordinator

By Julia Penhaligon Voters in the St Austell and Newquay constituency have been puzzled by a Conservative Party leaflet urging them to vote for Conservative MP Cherilyn Mackrory at...

Are we nearly there yet? More road closures throughout February as A30 inches towards Chiverton finish line

By Rashleigh MacFarlane They’ve been talking about it forever. It became serious in 2014 when the government published its Road Investment Strategy for 2015-2020. When the government announced its...

When the wind blows: Ryanair’s Stansted to Newquay flight had to go via Malaga

Storm Isha on Sunday forced several airlines to divert flights, but few had to make a longer detour than Ryanair's Stansted-Newquay route.  Winds in Cornwall were so strong that...

#MeToo: I have now signed the letter asking the government to help finance Cornwall Council, says MP Steve Double

By Steve Double Your report on the letter from the County Council’s Network has been brought to my attention and I do feel I need to write to you...

We’ll say more about safety at Newquay airport when we have more to say, says councillor

By Peter Tremayne A three-page note attempting to answer safety concerns at Newquay airport and spaceport is still “a work in progress” and that is why it remains confidential,...

Newquay harbour toilets vandalised

By Lee Trewhela Anti-social behaviour, including vandalism and drug-taking, has hit toilets at Newquay Harbour, a meeting of Cornwall Harbours Board heard this week. The meeting heard that the...

“Confidential” Newquay Airport briefing note leaves safety questions unanswered

By Peter Tremayne A three-page “briefing note” attempting to answer questions about safety at Newquay airport has finally been distributed to some Cornwall councillors. The document, which falls far...

Tick tock, tick tock: the Newquay Airport safety document promised “before close of play” yesterday is still not public

By Peter Tremayne Members of Cornwall Council’s economy scrutiny committee are this morning (Wednesday) “furious” that answers to questions about safety at Newquay Airport have still not been disclosed....

New Cornish Stuff admits it has nothing to do with old Cornish Stuff

By Rashleigh MacFarlane The Cornish Stuff local news website has confirmed that it has no connection with the previous website of the same name. Last week Cornish Stuff said: ...

Airport safety answers today? County Hall “briefing note” promised before close of play

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall Council bosses hope to avoid yet another constitutional wrangle by finally answering questions about safety at Newquay airport and spaceport – questions first raised by...

Just a minute: Newquay spaceport safety “could be improved”

By Peter Tremayne One year to the day after Richard Branson’s rocket crashed into the ocean without reaching orbit, all eyes will be on the chairman of a Cornwall...

Change in rules about cheap flights could be good news for Our Friends In The North

By Peter Tremayne Flights to and from Newquay Airport could face a shake-up in the coming year after the government announced it will change the rules about subsidised flights....

Flybe: after the Cornish cream teas, creditors are still scrambling for crumbs

By Peter Tremayne Creditors hoping to recover any money from the airline Flybe, which collapsed into administration for a second time 12 months ago, may have to wait another...

Stick or twist? The £60 million Mid Cornwall Metro railway project steams into the general election timetable

By Julia Penhaligon A contract for the first, and most expensive, part of Cornwall’s £60 million Mid Cornwall Metro (MCM) railway project is due to be signed this month...

EXCLUSIVE: The “Plan B” to keep Newquay Airport in public ownership

By Peter Tremayne Plans to privatise Newquay airport are running out of time, increasing the likelihood that the business and its surrounding land will remain in the ownership of...

As Newquay keeps falling into the sea, consultants warn of the need for more information before developers resume plans for cliff-top holiday homes

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Plans for seven cliff-top holiday homes at Newquay have suffered a further blow with the disclosure of a confidential geotechnical engineering report on the stability of...

The curious case of the invisible report on safety at Newquay’s airport and spaceport: as expected, County Hall starts 2024 under a cloud

By Peter Tremayne The agenda for a Cornwall Council scrutiny committee next month does not include a long-overdue report on safety issues at Newquay Airport and spaceport. The report...

How Cornwall will beat Elon Musk to the moon

By Peter Tremayne Space Engine Systems, based at Newquay and backed by Cornwall Council, is still inviting prospective passengers to sign up for its first flight into orbit in...

The curious case of the airport and spaceport safety concerns whose “imminent” answers are already casting a shadow over 2024

By Peter Tremayne As 2023 draws to a close, several Cornwall councillors are starting to despair of ever getting straight answers to questions about safety at Newquay airport and...

Teddies for peace: demonstration at Truro cathedral calls for ceasefire in Palestine

Hundreds of teddies have been laid out in front of Truro Cathedral to call for a ceasefire in Gaza, where Israel's response to the 7th October Hamas attack has...

Newquay Spaceport: among the lessons learned, not a word about “let’s try that again”

By Peter Tremayne The UK Space Agency has published a report of the “lessons learned” from last year’s adventure in Cornwall, which led to Richard Branson’s failure to put...

Newquay falls into the sea, again

Three weeks after a major collapse at Whipsiderry cliffs, there has been another large fall of stone following the recent heavy rain.  The site has planning consent for seven...

Plan for 400-lodge Newquay holiday resort labelled “monstrous”

By Lee Trewhela Plans have been submitted for a 400-lodge holiday resort near Newquay. The Green Ridge Resort would cover more than 150 ares of Cornish agricultural land but...

Rocket launchers can now take the high road: Scotland aims to put satellites into orbit at least once a fortnight

By Peter Tremayne Cornwall has lost its title as home to the UK’s only licenced spaceport. The Civil Aviation Authority has now licenced a vertical-launch facility on the Shetland...

EXCLUSIVE: Cornwall councillor quits County Hall Tory group

By Graham Smith Cornwall councillor Steve Arthur has resigned from the Conservative group at County Hall, reducing the ruling party’s overall majority to only three. Councillor Arthur, a Perranporth...

Councillors fear County Hall’s MCM ambitions will damage Cornwall’s bus network

By Graham Smith The Mid Cornwall Metro (MCM) rail project is taking £1.786 million from the existing public transport budget, councillors heard this morning (Wednesday.) The transfer of money...

Speculation that former Labour MP might seek election in St Austell and Newquay

By Julia Penhaligon Labour Party activists in the St Austell and Newquay constituency are pondering who might become their Parliamentary candidate, after a national political pundit tipped former MP...

Manufacturing demand: MCM to get its own website and “brand” identity before searching for passengers

Cornwall Council's £60 million Mid Cornwall Metro project is to get its own website, similar to The Dartmoor Line.  Project priorities, to be reported to the council's cabinet tomorrow...

Slow Train Coming: get ready to be told how much you want the MCM, as Cornwall Council tries to spin its way to £60 million rail project

By Julia Penhaligon Residents and local councillors in St Austell and Newquay are about to be subjected to a ferocious marketing campaign in support of the “MCM” – County...

Cyclists get their bridge over the A30 at Chiverton

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Completion of the St Agnes to Truro "Saints Trail" route has taken a step forward with the installation of a new traffic-free bridge over the A30...

Visit Newquay before Newquay visits you: planners approve another 134 houses

By Lee Trewhela Plans to build over 100 houses, a new shopping centre, a pub/restaurant, play park and offices on land deemed an “important gateway into Newquay” have been...

Space tourism from Newquay? The idea now looks even dafter than it did two years ago

By Peter Tremayne Less than a month after laying off workers and cancelling scheduled “space tourism” flights, Richard Branson has declared that he will spend no more money on...

Planning officials back proposals for Summercourt solar farm

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Cornwall’s planning officials are recommending approval of a huge solar farm at Summercourt. The application, for Burthy Row Farm, is for a 49.9MW installation of solar...

Mid Cornwall Metro still on track – for now

By Peter Tremayne The business case for the Mid Cornwall Metro railway project has been approved by the Department for Transport and is now being scrutinised by the Treasury,...

More of Newquay is expected to fall into the sea

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Cornwall Council is warning people to avoid Whipsiderry beach, Newquay, following the collapse of hundreds of tonnes of rock last week. “Further falls could be imminent,”...

Future of Newquay’s Royal British Legion club hangs on legal challenge

By Lee Trewhela A services’ veteran was visibly moved while talking about the controversial closure of Newquay’s much-loved Royal British Legion Club. The club suddenly shut its doors in...

Newquay falls into the sea

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Whipsiddery cliffs, Newquay, have collapsed again – taking a safety fence plunging hundreds of feet onto the beach below. A footpath cut into the cliffs was...

Who knew what and when did they know it? The curious case of what the Health and Safety Executive told the Civil Aviation Authority about hazardous chemicals stored next to Branson’s rocket and why no-one told the minister

By Peter Tremayne As County Hall officials stumble towards long-overdue answers to their own auditors about safety at Newquay Airport and spaceport, some are slowly coming to realise that...

Boardmasters: a suitable case for inquiry?

By Rashleigh MacFarlane Organisers of the Boardmasters music festival at Newquay have applied to increase its capacity by 5,000 next year, a rise of nearly 9.4%  bringing a total...