As he lay in the ambulance, blue lights flashing, all Trevor Osborne could think was of his unfinished plans for Porthleven and who would complete them now.

His brush with death last month has now only strengthened his resolve to see his vision through to the end – and sooner rather than later.

Speaking exclusively to the Packet as he made his first public appearance in the port since suffering a heart attack in early October, he said: “When I was in the ambulance, with the blue lights flashing, I thought I was probably going to die.

“My greatest concern was the fact I have not yet finished the project of establishing Porthleven in its proper place in the arts, with a strong local economy.

“I was wondering how the ideas that I yet have could come to fruition without me there. That was my greatest concern.”

Happily, that question can remain unanswered as the doctors were able to treat Mr Osborne, who has now made a full recovery – although the episode has only made him more focused and determined to achieve those goals.

“I got to the hospital in time and I didn’t die, so I’m back to deal with the challenge. I have to accept I’m older than I was and I have to keep my energy now in moving the project forward for the benefit of not me but Porthleven,” he added.

Mr Osborne was at the Old Lifeboat House Gallery on Saturday for the private viewing of just some of the artwork created by this year’s students who won the Porthleven Prize – an art residency he founded in conjunction with Bath Spa University, now in its fifth year.

It is this arts focus that he really wants to cement in Porthleven, which has already become known for its food – something that Mr Osborne describes as an art form in itself these days.

He said there was a huge amount of talented people in Porthleven and the surrounding area, adding: “Everyone recognises investment in the arts brings strong benefits to the local economy. I want to stimulate the local economy – more jobs, better pay for the local population.

“I’d like to see students at Falmouth and Exeter [universities] want to be in Porthleven, want to bring the benefit of their talents to the village.”

Mr Osborne also revealed that he intends to appeal Cornwall Council’s refusal for his planned Innovation Centre in Porthleven’s shipyard – while simultaneously submitting a new planning application to the council featuring a revised design.

His intention is to address the concerns over the mass of the building on the site – and he hopes that people will speak to him directly with their views, rather than on social media, which he refuses to respond to.

“I’m confident in due course we will get permission to do it,” he said.