Casualty 'not big issue' – GP

THERE is not a "snowball's chance" of Falmouth doctors joining forces to run a casualty service in the town, claimed a local GP this week.

The comment was made at a meeting between four Falmouth GPs and the town council on Monday evening when councillors were told a casualty service was not the "big issue" but that securing a community hospital was more important.

All the GPs in Falmouth and Penryn were invited to the meeting to put forward their feelings on providing a minor injury casualty service for the town as originally proposed by the health authority.

Dr Phil Burnett and Dr George Davis, of Trescobeas Surgery, Dr Andrew Rotheray, of the Falmouth Health Centre, and Dr Tom Stacpoole, of the Westover Surgery, took up the invitation.

Dr Davis told them: "There is not a snowball's chance, in my opinion, of all the GPs co-operating to operate a casualty service in Falmouth. Casualty might be a big political hot potato, but it is not the big issue.

"We cannot afford to be upsetting the health authority about the casualty issue when we really want help and co-operation to set up a community hospital in Falmouth."

He continued: "I do believe we really run the risk of firing the wrong missiles. What we want is a good community hospital where all the GPs, fund holders or non-fund holders, have good working relations in the hospital.

"If a casualty somehow comes out of the side of that, all well and good."

P and O consider French ferry link from Falmouth

By Stephen Ivall

CHANNEL ferry operators P and O are investigating the possibilities of opening a ferry route to South West France, with Bordeaux or La Rochelle the favoured options.

Whether it will operate from Falmouth or Portsmouth is not clear but a P and O official confirmed this week that all options were open and being looked at.

It is expected that every effort will be made to have the terminal in Falmouth if the service goes ahead.

"We began our service to Bilbao in Spain last year. It was on the drawing board for three years before it came about. We have been looking at a possible route to the Bordeaux region for the past year or two," said public relations manager Dave Wilson.

"We are undertaking a feasibility study and looking at it carefully," he added. "It is in the very early stages. We have to see if there is a deman."

He would not confirm or deny that Falmouth could be utilised as a terminal for the new route. He was well aware of plans to build a Ro-Ro terminal at Falmouth Docks.

Preliminary work on the terminal began last year using EC grant but little has been done in recent months.

It had been stated that no ferry operator was interested until the terminal was completed.

Roundabout would cut A39 traffic speed

A SIGNALISED traffic junction adjacent to the Perran Foundry site could only be considered if a roundabout to the south of Cove Hill is unacceptable to the county council on highway or associated technical grounds.

But there could be problems on what is one of Cornwall's busiest highways where numerous accidents have occurred in recent years.

For some times residents of Perranarworthal have been concerned with the speed of traffic along the edge of the site. The cost of such a roundabout could be prohibitive.

Mr Peter Stethridge, county surveyor, in a report to this week's transportation committee, said a new access road may affect the flood plain required by the NRA and was also "likely to be less efficient in allowing egress from the site in the evening peak period".

"It would, however, affect the change of status of the A39 and slow traffic speeds in this section of the Norway Valley," he said.

It was previously felt that a roundabout fully funded by the developer would provide an improved junction arrangement by reducing traffic speeds along the main road.

For some time residents of Perranarworthal have been concerned with the speed of traffic on the main road. The 50mph speed limit has helped but not alleviated the concern.