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Riviera Airshow hailed 'great success'

Saturday, 22 June 2024 08:51

By Guy Henderson, local democracy reporter

Red Arrows at the English Riviera Air Show (image courtesy:Torbay Council)

And public money invested was cut

The 2024 English Riviera Airshow was a sky-high success, according to the leader of Torbay Council.

This time last year Cllr David Thomas (Con, Preston) warned that the future of the two-day event was in jeopardy because the council could no longer afford it.

He said last year’s show cost the council £300,000, although opposition councillors disagreed with the figure. Cllr Thomas said such spending was unsustainable.

This year the town hall’s contribution to the costs was slashed to £100,000, with a challenge to local businesses and the community to make up the rest. A number of local organisations and business sponsors stepped in, and the show went ahead over two days at the beginning of June.

Crowds packed Paignton Green and vantage points all around the bay to see a show which featured the Red Arrows along with a packed programme of other flying displays.

A meeting of the full council heard that some people felt the new-look event had been ‘too corporate’ and had not involved the community enough, but Cllr Thomas said it had been ‘fantastic’.

Details of how much the show had cost and how much it had brought into Torbay would be discussed at later meetings, he said, and added: “The crowd numbers were huge, and whoever was responsible for the weather did an absolutely marvellous job.

“I’ve heard nothing but praise for this year’s event, and some people say it was the best year yet.

“What I’m hearing about the finances at the moment is very, very good news.”

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