‘When the G7 leaves town, Cornwall will still have its poverty and problems’

Behind Cornwall’s beautiful coastline lies a lack of secure jobs (Image: Getty)

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Cornwall is having a weekend in the sun of publicity generated by the G7 summit of world leaders.

All eyes are on Carbis Bay where Boris Johnson puts on his music-hall Churchill act for the cameras.

And the world’s media are salivating over President Joe Biden’s first foreign foray. It’s the media event of the decade.

But the warships anchored in the bay will sail away next week. The men in dark glasses with bulging jackets and strange ear-pieces will slip quietly from the scene.

The razzmatazz is short-lived and Cornwall’s acute problems will still be there when the uninvited guests go home. The area’s GDP is only 70% of the UK national average, with a high proportion in low-paid and seasonal employment such as tourism.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie Johnson walk together with US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden
(Image: Getty Images)

Cornwall was designated the second poorest region in the EU, and Brexit has not improved the economy.

Child poverty and homelessness figures are above average. In a bid to retain seats won in the county in 2019, Tory ministers have announced £65million will to be spent on making St Ives, Penzance and Camborne more “green”.

There will also be money to make Cornwall the first net-zero carbon area, planting trees, restoring peat and creating a network of cycle paths.

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But the county desperately needs well-paid jobs as well as wetlands. That’s why the Government should back
plans to reopen the Crofty Tin Mine, which could employ 275 workers directly and more than a thousand in the community.

They could start with a £15million grant to pump out water that flooded the mine after it shut in 1989.

Reviving mining, once a great Cornish industry, would be a more worthwhile and longer-lasting legacy of this weekend’s jamboree than all the hot air of international diplomacy.

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