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Chairman: 'We're way behind on public realm'

The Chairman of Scilly's Council has said that the islands are "way behind with the public realm".

Speaking at Scilly Business Week's Tourism Forum, Cllr Robert Francis said a "big push" is needed to improve the way Scilly looks to visitors and the community.

He said: "As a lot of you will appreciate, we're way behind in our public realm on Scilly, especially on St Mary's. I'm not pointing any blame anywhere, obviously the public realm does take money and as you know with Councils everywhere, money is tight. However, we need to make a huge effort on the public realm and this is where you can help as well.

"The good thing is that it doesn't always take money. For example there's already been an initiative that the Officers have done with the U3A where they've decided to help us with the flower boxes and so on. There are people that will help if they see us taking initiative in this and there should be co-operation from all around our community to help our public realm, which is going to help us in so many ways."

Cllr Francis urged islanders to attend a workshop to exchange ideas about the public realm on Friday.

"It would be great if any of you could pitch up for that and if you know people who are interested in how we look to our visitors and indeed for our own community then please join us with that because we've got to put some pressure on the Duchy, we've got to work with the Islands' Partnership, we've got to work with all our businesses. We've all got to do this, it can't just be done by the Council.

"So the public realm is a really big thing where we want to make a big push please."

The Public Realm workshop - titled 'Improving Scilly’s public realm - Hugh Town and the retail environment' - is aimed at "retailers, gallery owners, farmers’ market stall holders and crafters, hospitality gurus and restauranteurs", as well as anyone else with an interest.

It takes place on Friday between 11.30am and 1pm at Tregarthen's Hotel. Call the IP on 01720 620601 or email to book a place.


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