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Tag Archives: MasterPlan

Manston’s dreams and nightmares

"Nostrildamus nose the future"Nostrildamus says:

  • Infratil's Charles Buchanan will shortly unveil his plans to stuff our ears with plane noise 24 hours a day.
  • He will brandish carrots and sticks as if they were real.
  • He will repeat the mantra that the airport will have to close if the proposals aren't accepted.
  • He will never say that he will close the airport - far too personal.
  • He will want to distract attention from the fact that the closure of the airport is  a purely commercial decision, already more than half-made.

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Surely we can trust Infratil’s numbers?

Infratil (who own Manston) also own Prestwick Airport near Glasgow. In autumn 2008 Infratil’s forecast for passenger numbers at Prestwick was 5.7 million by 2018 and 12 million by 2033...

Almost immediately, freight and passenger business plummeted, and Prestwick ran at a loss for the rest of the year. Shortly after that, 50 staff lost their job. By autumn 2010, passenger business had fallen so much that another 120 staff had been made redundant... so much for Infratil’s forecasts.

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If it’s in the Master Plan, it must be right. Right?

If only! Even the Department for Transport says that airport Master Plans tend to be so over-optimistic about future passenger numbers that it applies its own “pinch of salt” discount when it produces its national forecasts. For example: in 1991 Manchester Airport wanted to build a second runway, and promised this would create 50,000 direct, indirect and induced jobs. The …

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Manston boss claims it wasn’t a “sweetener”

Charles Buchanan, chief executive, Kent International Airport, ManstonBitter-sweetener

Manston's boss has defended efforts to persuade the government to underwrite the costs of a new service out of the Kent airport. Chief executive Charles Buchanan said subsidies from the public purse were commonplace and it was unfair to describe them as sweeteners.

His comments follow our disclosure that KCC and Infratil, which operates the airport, had sought to persuade ministers to provide £600,000 to underwrite a twice-daily service out of Manston for the first three years of its operation.

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Passenger flight plans grounded at Manston

The global financial crisis has delayed plans to run more passenger services out of Kent International Airport. But airport chiefs, confident it is a short-term dip, have published a master plan that foresees gradual expansion over the next 20 years to around six million passengers a year. Freight operations are forecast to reach 400,000 tonnes. Matt Clarke, KIA chief executive, said:

"Like most businesses in the UK aviation marketplace our business has felt the impact of the recession. Our air cargo business has proved itself to be resilient but the recent market activity has delayed our plans for passenger service expansion in 2009.

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In a nutshell: airport manners

The Draft Masterplan for KIA is indicative but insubstantial – it needs to be redrafted, and then put out to consultation properly. The Section 106 Agreement should reflect the needs of everyone affected by the operation of the airport, not just Infratil and TDC. There is absolutely no need or justification for night flights (other than emergency diversions). Flight paths …

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Airport Working Party, 19 May 2009

Hours' worth of minutes

Dear reader, this is how some of us frittered our lives. There's plenty to pick over here, all comments welcome. I've added paragraph numbering for ease of reference and some comments (original version on TDC's website HERE). Council Officer in charge of the AWP: Charles Hungwe.

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