Plans to enhance the harbours at either end of a lifeline boat service between the Isles of Scilly and Cornwall have won "at least" £8 million worth of Government backing.
Transport minister Norman Baker announced yesterday his approval for a scheme to improve the facilities at Penzance and at St Mary's
The cash injection will pave the way for dredging at the mainland terminal and pier widening and improved freight handling facilities on Scilly, as well as other improvement works.
Mr Baker said: "We are putting at least £8 million into this scheme which shows that the coalition government is serious about protecting the livelihood of the Isles of Scilly.
"Improved terminal buildings will provide better conditions for passengers.
"Changes to the harbours themselves will ensure new vessels can still access the port protecting this route for use by residents, freight and holiday makers."
The cash has been awarded, subject to securing European funding and final permissions.
It follows a tortuous period in the history of the link which two years ago was all set for £62 million upgrade until the Government pulled the plug.