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Manston airport sale "a chance to introduce proper planning"

News that Manston airport is up for sale is confirmation that the local infrastructure is not sufficient to sustain an airport, according to one of the most respected campaign group in the country.

Manston’s New Zealand owner, lnfratil, announced it was selling the site because it wanted to “refocus its investment profile" and concentrate on retail, production and supplying gas and electricity. The move puts 123 jobs at risk.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England says the sale is an ideal chance for Thanet council to put into force planning regulations protecting the interests of residents

Planning permission for Manston

Manston airport sale “a chance to introduce proper planning”

News that Manston airport is up for sale is confirmation that the local infrastructure is not sufficient to sustain an airport, according to one of the most respected campaign group in the country.

Manston’s New Zealand owner, lnfratil, announced it was selling the site because it wanted to “refocus its investment profile” and concentrate on retail, production and supplying gas and electricity. The move puts 123 jobs at risk.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England says the sale is an ideal chance for Thanet council to put into force planning regulations protecting the interests of residents, particularly in the issue of night flights, which lnfratil wanted to introduce amid fierce local opposition. A CPRE spokesman said:

“Of course we are saddened to think that existing jobs at Manston might be put at risk, but it confirms our long-standing concerns that Manston has been unable to become a commercial success for many reasons, not least its lack of infrastructure. Manston airport has consistently struggled to attract passengers and airline operators despite the massive amount of  investment into it.

If a fresh start means new operators are able to breathe new life into Manston, we sincerely hope Thanet  District Council will take this as an opportunity to bring the operation under the proper control of a robust planning agreement to protect the interests of all of Thanet’s residents. The prospect of intensification of night flights, while Manston airport has been unable to exploit its daytime capacity, has hung over the county for far too long.”

Malcolm Kirkaldie was a member of the former watchdog Manston Airport Group. He said:

“The former owners of the airport never fully addressed local complaints or issues. Developers who come into Thanet need to be accountable to the local community and put something back.”

kentnews.co.uk 19th Mar 2012

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No comments

  1. Maurice Byford

    The sad thing is, that the Tory councillors are so 'dim witted' that they believe the spurious and misleading claims by the compulsive liar Buchanan, that night flights are the only way to make a successful airport.There is an obvious and mind bendingly clear solution to this, which can make Manston a successful airport and a purely day time operation, achieving its longer term goals far more effectively than the night flight route.But all the time you have a conman in charge of the airport, the bleeding obvious will almost certainly remain hidden!I know how Manston could become a successful daytime busy airport and attract business and create jobs. Does Buchanan? Clearly not.

  2. Front for Red clowns

    The thing is Maurice TDC/KCC and any of Manston's owners did not have a plan 'B'.I know of at least one local idea that would really make Manston a day time operation the trouble is (as you say) the TDC/KCC blinkerered approach.

  3. If Infratil wants to refocus its investment profile" and concentrate on retail, production and supplying gas and electricity, because the airport is losing money. Why not convert it to a solar farm.Manston is on latitude 5120' N, clear view to the South, nearby connection point to the grid, non polluting installation over drinking water aquifer, and effectively mothballs the airport. If there is a need for the airport in the future, the panels could be removed.Ramsgate harbour is already associated with the offshore wind farms, adding solar power would be complementary to its image.

  4. Dennis Franklin

    I have had many letters printed in the Thanet Gazette, opposing night flights, but in recent weeks they are being severely edited, to the point they are meaningless. In the past I have made a complaint against a local newspaper, not in Thanet, because I didn't think they were being even handed over a local highly controversial issue. Myself, and others complained to the IPCC and won! Is it worth doing the same with the Thanet Gazette<

  5. "I know how Manston could become a successful daytime busy airport and attract business and create jobs." Go on Mooreece, why not share will all of us us your vast knowledge and experience in running airports

  6. I know maurices plan – and a darned good one it is too! Bring back the yanks! They bring in business, men, and very big war planes that can reach the middle east easily. Yes sir, lets get it done.

  7. "..why not share will all of us us your vast knowledge and experience in running airports."A little rich, I must say.