March 7, 2023 6.30 pm This story is over 15 months old

Excitement for Scampton heritage plans and concern over asylum seeker rumours

£300m regeneration plans were announced

By Local Democracy Reporter

Villagers in Scampton have reacted to RAF Scampton news after a rollercoaster 24 hours.

West Lindsey District Council confirmed yesterday they were looking into buying the former RAF Scampton site in a bid to bring in £300 million investment.

However, the Home Office is now strongly rumoured to be housing asylum seekers there temporarily.

Council Leader Owen Bierley told The Lincolnite that the regeneration plans were made in the “best interest for the future of West Lindsey”.

He said: “The reason that it is such a tremendous opportunity is because it helps preserve the heritage of Scampton and creates the right environment to bring high-value, high-tech businesses to the district.

“Hopefully, in time it will provide really high-quality employment and also raise aspirations for our young people, which I think is absolutely crucial.”

Under the “landmark deal”, the site will continue to act as an operational airfield and will benefit from site-wide regeneration.

 

The base will continue to act as an operational airfield under the council’s plans | Photo: Ellis Karran

In response to the council’s plans, Ian Francis, 72, said: “I think it’s great that it’s being salvaged as an active airfield, although I’m disappointed in some respects with the vagueness of the plans.”

The 72-year-old went on to say that he hopes this development might see the Red Arrows return to the base.

“They’re practicing here anyway,” he continued. “We have all the inconvenience of the noise of them and no kudos from them being resident.”

Mr Francis was also the first to admit that he did not like the idea of migrants being housed at the base, saying: “I think the general impression around the country is that we don’t really want asylum seekers here.

“I think it would probably devalue properties in the village.”

Colin Wilson, 76, echoed Ian’s thoughts, as he branded the council’s initial ideas for the site as “guesstimates”.

He added: “In my personal opinion, what Lincoln needs, and it will probably never happen in my lifetime, is a new prison and a new hospital.

“That’s a dream, but it would be of practical use, rather than just covering it in even more cheap houses.”

When addressing the rumours of asylum seekers being housed at the base, he said: “I’ve worked abroad for a long time and I can see why they want to come here.

“Whether we should let them is another matter.”

The Dambusters Inn, Scampton | Photo: James Turner

Manager for the Dambusters Inn, Steve Plews, 59, welcomed the council’s plans as he felt it would keep the memory of the famous airmen alive.

“I think it’s brilliant because they’ll keep the Heritage Centre and they will keep the history there, which is important to people around the area,” he said.

The 59-year-old later shrugged off the idea of migrants being housed at the former base, calling it “scaremongering rumours”.

“I don’t think it will happen personally, because the council are not going to spend £300 million and then place a load of asylum seekers in there, I don’t know where people get these rumours from.

“As a country, we’ve got issues with asylum seekers, we know that. Why are they ending up in Lincolnshire?

“We are the further from any coast other than Skegness and I don’t think we’ll get many beaching there like we do in Dover.”

Exciting news for MyLocal app users and The Lincolnite readers! Our latest update is now available to download from your app store and comes packed with the best local news experience you can enjoy.

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Update your MyLocal app from your app store (version 2.73) now and start enjoying these great new features today!

P.S.: Start your MyLocal membership today to support MyLocal and The Lincolnite deliver you a better local news experience and honest journalism from across Lincolnshire.

P.P.S.: We have some huge things in the pipeline, stay tuned!

Exciting news for MyLocal app users and The Lincolnite readers! Our latest update is now available to download from your app store and comes packed with the best local news experience you can enjoy.

Discover MyLocal: Download the app today for iPhone or Android

Download now to enjoy:

  • Revamped News Feed: Enjoy faster loading times and smoother scrolling that make catching up on local news a breeze.
  • New Play Video Feed: Dive into a dynamic video feed that brings local stories to life in a whole new way.
  • Enhanced In-App Browser: Access external links quickly and efficiently, right from the app, without any distractions.

Update your MyLocal app from your app store (version 2.73) now and start enjoying these great new features today!

P.S.: Start your MyLocal membership today to support MyLocal and The Lincolnite deliver you a better local news experience and honest journalism from across Lincolnshire.

P.P.S.: We have some huge things in the pipeline, stay tuned!

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