KCC still think it’s a good idea to build a new station 2½ miles west of Ramsgate Station. The countless dozens of air passengers will be transferred by shuttle bus to Manston from the new Parkway station, which will obviously be much better than being shuttled from Ramsgate. KCC are asking for £10m as a starter for the hundreds (?) of millions the station will eventually cost – as if they can’t think of anything better to with that kind of money.
Mind you, if the China Gateway saga is anything to go by, I would be completely unsurprised to find that some canny TDC councillors have had the foresight to buy some land (that would then need to be compulsorily purchased) slap-bang where the station is proposed. Stay tuned.
Kent County Council seeks £10m grant for rail station at Manston airport
Kent County Council is today (21st Jan 2011) making a bid for £10 million Government investment into a train station to serve Manston airport. The Access to East Kent bid, spearheaded by KCC’s Councillor Nick Chard, hopes to grab a slice of the Regional Growth Fund, worth £1.4 billion, over the next three years. He said:
“The parkway station will have an enormous, positive impact on Thanet and the surrounding area by creating new jobs and regenerating the area. For me, it’s a question of when we do this, not if.”
The bid will ask for a contribution to the cost of building the rail station south of Manston and west of Cliffsend, on the main Ashford to Ramsgate line. The bid also includes potential funding for a new daily air service from Manston to an undisclosed European “hub airport”. Manston airport’s boss Charles Buchanan, who believes the bid will support owner Infratil’s ambitious expansion plans, said:
“In our own master plan for growth we identified access to rail as a key element to going forward. I can’t tell you the name of the airport because we are in sensitive negotiations. We think the parkway deal, which is linked to our airport discussions, is a real prize for east Kent. I want the area to be linked to developing countries, and businesses from east Kent travelling to them.”
Infratil has also agreed in principle to making a £500,000 contribution towards the cost of a Thanet Parkway Station. The potential for a station was identified in the county council’s plan Growth without Gridlock, published last month. The report says that improving transport links to the airport and bringing journey times from Thanet to London St Pancras down to 64 minutes will help deliver airport growth and generate jobs in Thanet. KCC will find out if it has secured funding in seven weeks.
thisiskent 21st Jan 2011