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Sir Ben Ainslie’s relief as plan for Portsmouth base is approved

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PLANS for Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup base in Old Portsmouth were approved by councillors today.

Speaking after the meeting Sir Ben told The News: ‘It’s a big relief, it’s very exciting to have Portsmouth.

‘We need the people of Portsmouth behind the venture and really the whole nation.

‘We identified Portsmouth as the place that we wanted to be and we’re absolutely delighted.’

Numerous deputations were heard from people for and against the building at Camber Dock in Old Portsmouth.

David Higham, of the Camber Action Group, said he was disappointed about the decision.

He said: ‘obviously the Camber Action Group are disappointed but not surprised.

‘We’re going to reflect over what’s going to be done.’

As reported, hundreds of people packed a meeting at Portsmouth Cathedral, Old Portsmouth, on Monday to hear from Sir Ben.

Many residents said they supported the scheme but some are concerned about the size of the building.

The council has already paid out £700,000 in compensation to businesses on the site who moved out and for work at the Camber.

Another £700,00 is earmarked to be spent on the same matters.

Sir Ben said 1,000 jobs could be created if the base is built, according to a report based on the America’s Cup base in New Zealand.

City planners had already recommended the base should be given the green light.

 

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