HC Deb 20 May 1963 vol 678 c12
16. Mr. Rankin

asked the Minister of Aviation what proposals, in addition to the building of a high-class hotel, Sheraton's Motels Limited have placed before him for adding to the attractions of Prestwick Airport and increasing the numbers of passengers using it; and if these further proposals have been approved.

Mr. Marten

Sheraton Motels' plans for the hotel at Prestwick Airport include various attractions for golfers. The company envisage arrangements for parties of golfers from North America to fly by charter aircraft to Prestwick and stay at the airport hotel. I welcome these enterprising ideas, which should not only help to ensure the success of the hotel, but generate useful additional traffic for the airport.

Mr. Rankin

Does the hon. Gentleman accept the view that air passengers alone will not fully utilise the hotel with its 166 bedrooms? Will he give full support to the company's attempts to introduce attractions such as golf, in a golfing county and a golfing country, immediately adjacent to the hotel, with children's putting greens, swimming pools and all the other things to make Prestwick a first-class attraction?

Mr. Marten

We shall give all the support we can towards making Prestwick Airport really profitable—those attractions and, I hope, others.

Mr. Ross

It is very good to know that we are to introduce golf at the place where the first championships were held—several years ago. Can the hon. Gentleman tell me whether this is a firm proposal, whether it has been accepted and approved by the Minister, and when we in Ayrshire shall be able to see the projected plans for this new hotel?

Mr. Marten

The proposal has been made and letters of intent have been signed. We are now awaiting the final details of contracts and checking up on the financial reliability of the purchasers.