An Air Show at the Maze could really take off

Vulcan Bomber. Pic: Air Waves.
Vulcan Bomber. Pic: Air Waves.

The Ulster Aviation Society must be supported to put on a much needed air show at the Maze Site- a local MLA has demanded.

Assembly member Jenny Palmer (UUP) issued her challenge to the Executive following a written question to the First and deputy First Ministers.

Mrs Palmer had asked the First Minister and deputy First Minister for their assessment of the restrictions on the Ulster Aviation Society opening to the public’s impact on social, economic and tourism projects at the Maze/Long Kesh site.

Responding to Mrs Palmer, the two Ministers wrote: “There is no current agreement on Maze/Long KeshSite issues. The Ulster Aviation Society (UAS) has a licence agreement with the Maze / Long Kesh Development Corporation (MLKDC) which permits it to store its collections at the MLK site.

“By agreement with the MLKDC it can give limited access to small groups to view its collection. More general access to the site is a matter for agreement on a case by case basis by Ministers.

“There is no impact on the wider development of the site. This remains a matter for discussion by Ministers,” the First and deputy First Minster told Mrs Palmer.

Mrs Palmer added: “The Stormont Executive needs to stop pussy-footing about with the Maze issue and get it settled once and for all so that the site can be developed to the maximum.

“Given the tremendous popularity of air shows in other constituencies, we need to get the UAS to be given the green light to be able to host an air show in Lagan Valley. This would be of equally tremendous value to both tourism and the local economy.

“Perhaps the inclusion of an air show at the Maze would also spur the Executive departments on to resolve the traffic nightmare in terms of road access to the Maze site itself. I intend to keep pressing the Executive on this important issue,” said Mrs Palmer.