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Night Flights: too hot to handle?

Calling all TDC-ologists: what’s going to happen on Thursday?

Cllrs Hart and Poole have tabled a motion about Night Flights for the Council meeting on Thursday 14th July 2011. The blurbs that come with the meeting handouts say that there are two options:

  • To note that the motion stands referred without discussion to Cabinet; or
  • To debate the motion.

All the Councillors who pay any attention at all will have registered that night flights are a hot topic. All the manifestos made some kind of reference or pledge, and the results in several seats in Ramsgate were decided on the strength of the candidates’ stance on night flights.

The election is over, the dust has settled, and there’s no longer any need to pussy-foot about. The Council is now in a position to knuckle down and get on with the job it was elected for: representing the wishes and interests of the electorate.

So, what’s it to be? Kick it into the long grass, or debate it? Click here to find out what happened.


“The Council adopts a policy of not allowing scheduled, pre-planned or otherwise timetabled flights between the hours of 23:00 and 07:00. That a period of 1 hour at either end of the flying day be allowed for late/early arriving flights only. That a penalty be applied to any flights arriving during the 1 hour periods. No take-offs will be allowed between 23:00 and 07:00 hours and a schedule of exceptions to the above be prepared to include ‘mercy flights’, and flights for medical emergencies, coastguard movements etc.”

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  1. Why move next to an aiport? It's been there before most of the homes as well as being a well used airport.Can't understand people who go and live next to an airport area then moan about *noise* aw

  2. When I moved to the area, the airport had a ban on night flights. It still does. That's how I want it to stay. Night flights will damage the area more than they would help it.Given that they only have a few flights a day, don't you think it would make more sense for them to get busy during the daytime before expecting us all to put up with night flights?If they were bursting at the seams with nose-to-tail air traffic every day it would be different, but as it is, there's simply no need for night flights.

  3. But still you moved next to an airport, which at any time it's operational status could change.All very well saying fill up the daytime slots – it would depend on where the flight was departing from/timezones etcCan you say 100% that all the supporters on here have never been on a flight going into another country during night hours?The more flights Manston gets the better, this area is rank, full of unemployment. Anything that would increase traffic and income would only be a plus. How would it damge the area? I find the amount of lights comming off the golf courses more damaging to local wildlife. The heaving traffic every day on the A256 is more damaging.I work nights – can sleep fine with daytime flights. More needs to be done to encourage flights into Manston no matter what the time – Thanet is a struggling, run down place and needs what ever money it can grab – from landing / take offs fees is only one option.

  4. Frutus Kiwius

    LisaAnd what do you do at TDC, or for the community for that mattter!!Just thought I would ask.

  5. THE RETIRED IN THIS AREA WISH FOR PEACE AND QUITE AND DO NOT WANT UNDUE NOISE AT NIGHT. THIS AIRPORT WAS RAF OWNED WHEN I MOVED HERE AND I ONLY EXPERIENCED ONE OVERHEAD FLIGHT A WEEK BUT HAS HAS SINCE CHANGED USE. CAN SOMEONE PLEASE COMMENT ON THE LAW AND COMPENSATION ASPECTS REGARDING 'CHANGE OF USE'. A FRIEND OF MINE RECEIVED COMPENSATION WHEN A NORMAL RAILWAY LINE WHICH THEY RESIDED BY STARTED TO USE THE CHANNEL TUNNEL TRAINS WHICH CREATED MORE NOISE-SO ARE WE ALL DUE COMPENSATION IF AFFECTED BY INCREASED AIRCRAFT DISTURBANCE AND NOISE?.

  6. Last week in Singapore I stayed at a hotel right under the flight path to Singapore International Airport (Changi). The runway was approx a couple of kilometres away. Obviously the hotel itself was airconditioned and double glazed so no chance of hearing the noise from the many night flights.However, a walk outside made all the difference. Once you'd spotted an aircraft just a few hundred feet over head you could then make out the sound of its engines. At no time were these engines loud, noisy or offensive. By the way, take offs and landings all seem to be towards or from the sea.Surely if an airport the size of Singapore's can enforce such stringent noise control regulations then why can't a tinpot operation like Manston do the same? And why can't TDC's self servers look, listen, learn and implement similar standards given so few aircraft movements?Or is that too much to ask?

  7. common sense

    "Can you say 100% that all the supporters on here have never been on a flight going into another country during night hours?"Yes… BECAUSE OTHER AIRPORTS DON'T OPERATE AT NIGHT, and for good reason.

  8. Wellington Clam

    Has their not been a land mark case for a noise issue that could bankrupt TDC, with the compensation costs? I have read the case notes….oh dear TDC!!!!

  9. craig under the flightpath

    I love the tired old 'what did you expect when you moved next to an airport' argument. I live adjacent to a road but I'd be pretty put out if they decided to make it into the Canterbury bypass for lorries!All we'll end up with is the night freight flights that no other airport is willing to accept. There will be very few if any extra jobs and the extra income to the area will only come if the occasional lorry driver stops off to buy a bag of crisps from the one petrol station that he passes in thanet on his way out of thanet. Any money the airport earns will go towards off setting the massive losses the airport continues to make.

  10. craig under the flightpath

    Oh, just thought of another point that turns Lisa's first comment on its head.Why purchase an airport that has a night flight ban and then whinge that you can't make a profit for your New Zealand shareholders without night flights? Doh! Glad they're not running my pension fund.

  11. Commercial sense

    Why buy an airport that has gone bankrupt because not enough people want to fly from it and then whinge that you can't make money? Why buy an airport that Easyjet and Ryanair have already rejected because it's too far from a sensible catchment area for them to be able to fill their flights and then moan that you can't attract airlines to use your airport unless they are funded with taxpayers' money? This is what Infratil have done. Why then expect that local residents will be thrilled when you want to rescue your dead duck airport by making it a night freight airport?It's simple. Infratil did not do their homework when they bought Manston and now they think we should all suffer just so they can attempt to pull their dismal investment out of the fire. No way, guys. You cocked this one up. Time to own up to your shareholders that this was a bad investment and decide to do something with the site that WILL create jobs and make money.

  12. jean robinson

    Conservative M.P.s in Biggin Hill have seen the light!! So why are our M.P.s being so difficult. We do not want night flights over Herne Bay. We get all of the problems and none of the benefits. This is a peaceful town and has been since the 2nd world war so let's keep it that way and ban all night flights.

  13. Common sense

    Oh, and by the way, I bought a house in Beltinge, a few miles from the airport, not NEXT to it. Yet the house is right under the flightpath. I hope to God that we will not be stitched up and have to bear the brunt of a compromise solution of allowing night flights, just not over Ramsgate. The fact is, for people living anywhere other than this tip of Kent, Gatwick et al is just as easy to get to and offers an infinately better choice of flights and airlines, so the incentive to come to our little corner of Kent just isn't there. Manston will never be able to compete as from day one they couldn't offer the same choice. Infratil's argument that they cannot attract passenger flights without the night time slots is bull. Who wants to fly off on holiday at 3am… That's right, nobody. that leaves those rusty old freight flights for which the airport is no where near capacity, if the 3 or so planes a day that fly over my house are anything to go by. And why should we suffer the consequences of night flying just so some flowers can make it to market in the early hours, whilst my chance of a heart attack goes up 48%? Infratil, fill your daytime slots to capacity then we'll talk again…. Let's face it, that time won't come.

  14. The equalizer

    I have read all of your arguments with gusto and just wanted to say a couple of things… Firstly when the airport had flights to Portugal, Jersey etc how many of you used this facility… not a lot, that's why the operators went bust. I actually did go to these places and I saw about 6 staff manning the whole airport… so not a lot of jobs there!Secondly, we all know that London is the hub and this airport supposedly is aimed at them?… do you think that with Heathrow and Gatwick approx 50 miles away from the centre of London and 30 minutes by train or underground that they will at great expense of time and money go to an airport 90 odd miles away on the promise of cheaper parking and 1 gift shop. I rest my case.