Talks for a joint Teignmouth and Dawlish airshow have begun. Early stages of negotiations around a two day event at the back end of the summer of 2018 are under way and an emergency Teignmouth town council has been arranged for Tuesday night to discuss the proposal.
Tens of thousands of pounds would be needed to finance the airshow, but Cllr Paul Burgess, the mayor of Teignmouth, said that they would hope to cover the costs of the displays through corporate sponsorship and that the event would not go ahead unless it was certain to break event.
The long-running Dawlish Airshow was grounded in 2016 and 2017 as the organisers felt they needed to take a break and that the event couldn’t be financed respectively, but it is hoped that a two day airshow across the two towns could be held in 2018.
And Cllr Burgess said that the event would be even better than the two day airshow in Paignton if it got the go-ahead and would not make a loss.
The first Torbay Airshow held in 2015 made a thumping loss of more than a quarter of a million while the second show in June lost £7,000.
Torbay Council agreed a £455,000 underwriting over the next five years, with the addition of the ‘maximum’ cap, for the airshow at their meeting on Thursday night, but Cllr Burgess said that unless the airshow would not make a loss, it would not go ahead.
Cllr Burgess told Devon Live: “This is an idea that I support this 110 per cent and think that it would be absolutely brilliant and a fabulous event for both Teignmouth and Dawlish. It has great potential to attract 100,000 people across the two towns and would be a great event for the calendar. People love the Red Arrows.
“There is lots of work to do behind the scenes and we need to discuss it would sponsors and we also need the support of the public for this, but I believe that the public would overwhelmingly support this, and the type of sums we are talking about would not place any real burden on the tax payer.
“The way we plan to finance this is that unless we were 100 per cent confident of getting the financial commitment we need from sponsors then this wouldn’t go ahead. No-one’s intention is that this event makes a loss and if anything, we have the skills and the knowhow behind this to make a profit.
“I know I am biased, but I think this would be a better airshow that than the one in Torbay. There is the historical connection with the Dawlish Airshow and that we have better seafront viewing points with two miles of seafront at Teignmouth and five miles of seafront at Dawlish. We have a natural arena for an airshow with our coastline and I know that the flyers love coming to this part of the world.”
He added that discussions between Teignmouth and Dawlish town council’s about the airshow have begun and that an emergency Teignmouth town council next week would be told more about the plans and whether to back it.
The airshow is proposed to run over two days, with one day in Teignmouth and one day in Dawlish.
Cllr Burgess said: “We have to book well in advance so we need to have the discussions now about whether we want to support this or say that we have discussed it and have chosen to go another way and are not on board.
“Before it stopped, the Dawlish Airshow was voted the best free airshow in the country, the people who were behind that are still on board and they have the skills to make it a success.”
A decision on whether to proceed with an airshow in 2018 will be taken at a later date.
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