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Isles of Scilly Face 'Medical Crisis'

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11:08am 20th January 2013

Pirate FM has learned people on the Isles of Scilly are being forced to make the 80 mile round trip to Penzance on open-top boats.

Islanders say they also have to wait days for medical tests, after helicopter flights were axed.

Planes from Land's End have also been disrupted because the wet weather has waterlogged the runway.

Campaigner Dick Cliffe said the situation needs sorting:

"You're quite close to the water. It's literally only a couple of feet above the water. It's a two hour journey of course they'll be well out of sight of land, obviously some quite big waves that they'll have to go over and it's expensive as well.  It's £110 each way.  

"It is causing a great deal of pain for a lot of people. There are a lot of older people living on the islands who have chronic medical conditions who need regular attention and checks at hospital and it is a nightmare getting off in the winter and now with flights being re-directed up to Newquay.

Local MP Andrew George has asked the Prime Minister to meet with locals:

"The fact is that if miles between Land's end and the Isles of Scilly were in fact a slither of land the government would be responsible for maintaining a tarmac road. I still think that we as a country want to make sure that all of our communities are linked up.

"I hope that it doesn't require some kind of tragedy or risk that will actually draw people's attention to just how serious it is. It shouldn't need to come to that. The bits of the jigsaw are there but they're going to need pulling together to get this thing off the ground.

11:08am 20th January 2013

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