“Gale’s View – 17th January 2018
Thanet has an excess of land available to meet the projected demand for housing without recourse to the use of Manston airport.
When I stated that fact some weeks ago I was challenged by the Leader of the Council, Cllr. Wells, to “put up or shut up”. my assessment has now been confirmed by a report prepared by the independent planning consultancy RPS group.
In their findings, published last week, the consultants show clearly that without building houses on Manston Airport well in excess of 100% of the space required to meet Government targets to 2031 has been identified and it is arguable that not only is Manston not required but that some of the Grade One agricultural land that the present administration has included in the draft Local Plan should not be prioritised either.
It is also the case that even if the changes to calculations proposed by the DCLG, and quoted by Cllr Wells and officers as a ‘ frightener’ should Thanet Council reject the draft local plan, were to be imposed then a new figure of 21,260 houses, however unlikely they are to actually be built, could readily be achieved without including Manston Airport in the land bank.
Cllr Wells and his administration was elected on a promise that ” Only UKIP can be trusted to issue a compulsory purchase order for Manston Airport” under the slogan “Love Manston, Vote UKIP”. No equivocation, no ifs or buts, no mention of RiverOak or any other ‘Strategic Partner.’
The 2015 Thanet Draft Local Plan states that “it is considered that a successful airport has the potential to be a significant catalyst for economic growth” and adds that the principle purpose of the Manston Airport Area Action Plan ” should be the retention, development and expansion of the airport and aviation operations”. That Draft went out to consultation and gained wide public support.
Cllr. Wells’ administration now seeks to change the current designation as an airport and for aviation uses to a new mixed- use development combining, by 2031, a minimum of 2,500 dwellings in addition to those already identified and provided for, together with other commercial development. That proposal is not supported by an adequate environmental impact assessment and makes no provision for vital infrastructure including not least water supply.
I hold to the view that post- Brexit it is vital that we retain and develop Manston as an airport in the National and in the local interest. Once lost, it can never be replaced. Unless, therefore, the Council is prepared to withdraw its’ change of use proposals for Manston, which can be done swiftly and without further consultation, then elected Councillors should ignore the dire warnings of Cllr. Wells and officers and reject the current draft local plan. Given the political will there is still time to revise and adopt a realistic plan before the end-of-March deadline and I do not believe that the Secretary of State is likely to take precipitate action to seek to penalise Thanet for the preservation of the unique national asset that is Manston Airport.
Sir Roger Gale MP – MP for Margate, Herne Bay & The Villages”
Thanet District Council Cabinet agrees to publish the draft Local Plan
October 26, 2017 (Source SuMA)
At last night’s Cabinet meeting the Draft Local Plan (DLP) was progressed to the publication stage by a vote of 5 to 1. This is however the start, not the end, of this particular process.The DLP, as we are well aware, includes the re-designation of the Manston Airport site from aviation only to a mixed use development under revision SP05. There will now follow a series of cross party Overview and Scrutiny meetings. Most of these meetings will be held in private before a public meeting on 21st November when their final recommendations will be made.The Cabinet voted to agree to the following recommendations:
1. That Cabinet agree the draft Local Plan, with the changes proposed in this report, the Sustainability Appraisal and draft Transport Strategy for Publication for a period of 6 weeks to allow comments to be made;
2. That Cabinet agree to publish the Thanet Landscape Character Assessment for comment, with the intention of adopting it as a Supplementary Planning Document (SPD);
3. That Cabinet recommend to Council that, following the Publication period, the draft Local Plan be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate for Examination; and
4. That Cabinet agree the proposed amendments to the Local Development Scheme. More details on the meeting and proposals, can be found here
There will be another Cabinet meeting on 14th December and then a full Council meeting on 18th January when all Councillors will have the opportunity to vote.A Public Consultation lasting 6 weeks will take place in the new year. Summaries and updates will be available nearer the time.Remember you can already view the major changes to the proposed DLP, including SP05 relating to Manston, here
Even if you have responded before to previous consultations it is imperative that you submit a new response once the consultation goes live because at this stage the submissions go directly to the Secretary of State who will look at the responses with fresh and independent eyes.
Planning Inspector Dismisses Stone Hill Park
appeals against the rejection of change of use
The decision of the Public Inquiry regarding Lothian Shelf ‘s (718) appeal to allow the re-designation of buildings on Manston Airport has been released with the Inspector, Mr Nunn, dismissing all 4 appeals.
Mr Nunn explains the decision over 52 points and concludes –
“Overall, I conclude that the appeal schemes would conflict with Policy EC4 of the Local Plan, as well as its wider economic development and regeneration objectives.
The proposals would conflict with the Council’s current approach to the location of new development within the airport, which is consistent with national policy.
The benefits of the scheme put forward by the appellants do not justify departure from Policy EC4 of the Local Plan.
Hence I find there are no material considerations of sufficient weight that would warrant a decision Appeal Decisions APP/Z2260/W/15/3140990, 3140992, 3140994 & 314099512 other than in accordance with the development plan.
Accordingly, I conclude that the appeals should be dismissed”
Originally, the owners of Manston, Stone Hill Park applied for the change of use of four existing buildings from aviation use only. The Planning Committee of Thanet District Council rejected the original application, but failed to respond in time on the other applications. They did however later resolve that they would have made the same decisions on the other cases.
Stone Hill Park appealed against the rejections, but such was the detail of the matter, the Planning Inspectorate decided that it required a Public Inquiry in March 2017. Thanet District Council withdrew their objections to the original applications.”
RiverOak announces partnership with Securitas
(Source: Wordsmith Communication UK Limited 05 July 17)
RiverOak Strategic Partners has announced an exclusive partnership with Securitas to implement and operate a full suite of fire and security services at Manston Airport in Kent.
Securitas, specialists in all aspects of aviation security, will provide fire and safety expertise, manage specialist detection teams, handle general-purpose security dog teams and provide an City and Guilds-accredited onsite security resource, in conjunction with state-of-the-art security technology.
RiverOak is proposing to reopen Manston Airport as a vibrant air freight hub with associated business aviation and passenger services, creating almost 30,000 jobs by the airport’s 20th year of operation. It is currently consulting on these proposals before submitting an application for a Development Consent Order to the Planning Inspectorate. The consultation runs from Monday 12 June 2017 to Sunday 23 July 2017.
Following the statutory consultation, the DCO application will be submitted later this year. A decision by the Secretary of State is expected by the end of 2018, with opening of the re-built and refurbished airport planned in 2020.
RiverOak director George Yerrall said, “We have been working alongside Securitas for some months now and are delighted to be able make this announcement. Securitas looks after security at 220 airports in 53 countries and they have a deserved international reputation, not just for their high security standards, but also for their progressive attitude to pay, conditions and staff training.”
Shaun Kennedy, Director of Specialised Protective Services, Securitas, added: “Having worked closely with the RiverOak team we understand their vision but we also recognise the future security challenges in this sector. Our vast experience in aviation, security, fire and safety, canine and risk management makes us a perfect fit for RiverOak Strategic Partners. By blending people, technology and knowledge, Securitas is perfectly placed to provide a total security solution at Manston Airport.”
PRESS RELEASE FROM RIVEROAK STRATEGIC PARTNERS
Friday 26th May 2017
Seven public consultation events will be held between Wednesday 14 June and Saturday 24 June, as part of a six-week consultation period on RiverOak Strategic Partners’ proposals to reopen Manston Airport as an air freight hub, creating thousands of jobs for Thanet and the wider regional economy.
RiverOak has published details of the consultation in a Statement of Community Consultation. The 2017 consultation will include seven consultation events as follows:
- The King’s Hall, HERNE BAY, Wednesday 14 June: 2pm – 8pm
- The Pavilion, BROADSTAIRS, Thursday 15 June: 2pm – 8pm
- CLIFFSEND Village Hall, Friday 16 June: 2pm – 8pm
- The Sands Hotel, MARGATE, Saturday 17 June: 10am – 2pm
- The Guildhall, SANDWICH, Tuesday 20 June: 2pm – 8pm
- Abode Hotel, CANTERBURY, Thursday 22 June: 2pm – 8pm
- The Comfort Inn, RAMSGATE, Saturday 24 June: 10am – 2pm
These events are open to any member of the public that would like to attend and further details of the locations, local public transport services and other information can be found in the Statement of Community Consultation which can be downloaded from www.rsp.co.uk.
George Yerrall, Director of RiverOak Strategic Partners, said: “The consultation is very important to us as it allows the local community to scrutinise our proposals and share their views and thoughts with us. This, in turn, will enable us to refine our proposals further before submitting the Development Consent Order application to the Planning Inspectorate, later this year.
“At the events visitors will be able to view consultation documents, talk to members of our professional team and give their feedback. Feedback forms can also be emailed or sent to us, right up until the closing date of the consultation on Sunday 23 July.”
Copies of consultation documents will be available from 12 June at www.rsp.co.uk and at these public libraries during their normal opening hours: Birchington, Broadstairs, Cliftonville, Deal, Herne Bay, Margate, Minster-in-Thanet, Newington, Ramsgate, Sandwich and Westgate. As the full Preliminary Environmental Impact Report (PEIR) is a very large document, it will only be available in full at Deal, Herne Bay and Margate libraries. A non-technical summary will be available at all libraries, at the seven consultation events and on the RSP website, as part of an Overview Report.
In addition to the public events there will be two business-only briefings, at The King’s Hall in Herne Bay, on Wednesday 14 and at the Pavilion in Broadstairs, on Thursday 15 June. Businesses interested in attending should email email@example.com. uk for further information and to secure a place.
The full consultation period will run from Monday 12 June 2017 to Sunday 23 July 2017.
Statement of Statutory Consultation: https://static.secure.website/ wscfus/10240501/5819830/rsp-st atement-of-community-consultat ion-may-2017.pdf”
Decision on Manston Airport change of use appeals delayed
May 19, 2017 (Source SuMA)
RiverOak Strategic Partners’ plans for Manston set to create almost 30,000 jobs in Thanet
Even in first year of operation almost 6,000 people will find employment as a result of Manston’s revival.
Under RiverOak Strategic Partners’ plans to reopen Manston Airport, as an air freight hub with passenger services and business aviation, more than 4,200 people would be employed directly at the airport site by its twentieth year of operation, with a further 26,000 jobs created in the wider economy.
The figures have been revealed as the final report in a four volume set, entitled Manston Airport: a regional and national asset, is published, considering the socio-economic impact of reopening the airport.
The four reports were commissioned by RiverOak Strategic Partners, from respected aviation academic Dr Sally Dixon of Azimuth Associates and include detailed business modelling, interviews with airlines, freight forwarders and integrators, together with analysis of the pent-up demand for air freight, which is currently costing the UK economy more than £2 Billion in lost income.
Dr Dixon’s reports show that air freight is increasingly being bumped from busy passenger aircraft, causing delays as goods bound to or from UK businesses and consumers have to be flown into and out of northern European airports and trucked across the Channel. In comparison to its congested neighbours in the South-East, Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, Manston Airport represents an ideal opportunity to deliver runway capacity to meet this pent-up demand – and, in doing so, thousands of jobs will be created for Thanet and the wider Kent region.
George Yerrall, director of RiverOak Strategic Partners, said: “From the date that the airport reopens, almost 6,000 jobs would be created – around 850 jobs on the airport site itself and a further 5,000 indirect and catalytic jobs in the wider economy, in associated industries or businesses.
“The positive economic impact grows each year along with the airport. We have forecast up until the twentieth year of operation, by which time 30,000 people in Thanet and East Kent would be able to trace their job to the revival of the airport.
“We have a real opportunity to tap into a proven demand for air freight that other South-East airports simply can’t meet. The £2 billion lost to the UK economy each year is set to almost double by 2050, even with an additional runway at Heathrow. Manston Airport is ideally placed to help recapture this traffic, which is being displaced to northern Europe. In meeting this demand, we create huge employment potential for Thanet and provide a powerful economic boost for the nation.
“We are in the process of discussing with local colleges and businesses how best to maximize career and supply chain opportunities in Manston.”
Employment at the airport would be a mix of role types, including:
• Freight services
• Passenger services
• Rescue and Fire Fighting Services
• Airport operations
• Site and freight security
• Air Traffic Services
Dr Dixon is an academic attached to Cranfield University. She is a specialist in stakeholder involvement with major airport infrastructure, lecturing on stakeholder influences on airport master planning to Cranfield MSc students. Dr Dixon holds a PhD from Cranfield and an MBA from Kent University and is a member of the Royal Aeronautical Society.
She adds: “Thanet District Council’s economic development plan is ambitious. The council is starting from a challenging situation, given that local employment, productivity and wages are generally lower than in other parts of Kent. My research evidences that a vibrant air freight hub at Manston will be vitally important in stimulating thousands of high quality jobs at the airport and in the local area, helping the council to deliver an economic output that puts Thanet on a par with rest of Kent.”
RiverOak Strategic Partners is preparing for the next stage of consultation on proposals to reopen Manston Airport. The consultation is now expected to start in June, after the General Election. Full details of how local people across East Kent can participate in the consultation will be published shortly.
Wordsmith Communication UK Limited
12th May 2017
Dedicated to support retaining Manston first and foremost as a centre of excellence for aviation facilities
RiverOak Strategic Partners confirms consultation on plans to re-open Manston Airport will start on Monday 12 June
RiverOak Strategic Partners has announced that their statutory pre-application consultation will start on Monday 12 June, directly after the General Election.
The consultation will last for six weeks and will close on Sunday 23 July. In order to give as many local people and organisations as possible an opportunity to participate this is two weeks longer than the minimum required for statutory consultation. The consultation will also be publicised widely, via letters to those closest to the site, leaflets to those further away, and local newspapers and other media for those in the rest of Thanet and beyond.
During the consultation copies of the proposed airport masterplan, detailed research reports into the demand for Manston as an airport, the economic and social impact of reviving the airport and the Preliminary Environmental Impact Report (PEIR) will all be available for inspection and comment. RiverOak Strategic Partners will also be holding consultation events across Thanet and East Kent, which anyone is welcome to attend.
The consultation is an opportunity for members of the public to scrutinise our proposals and suggest any changes to them. RiverOak Strategic Partners is also keen to hear any ideas about how to maximise the benefits to the region from reopening Manston Airport.
Full details of consultation events and how to participate in the consultation will be published in due course in local and national newspapers, online and via leaflets delivered to households in communities living around the airport.
2. Azimuth Associates: Manston Airport a national and regional aviation asset – Volume II a qualitative study of regional demand
3. Azimuth Associates: Manston Airport a national and regional aviation asset – Volume III the forecast
4. Northpoint Aviation: The Shortcomings of the Avia Solutions Report and an Overview of RSP’s Proposals for Airport Operation at Manston
Gale’s View – Sir Roger Gale M.P.
The two meetings held at the weekend, at Margate Winter Gardens on Saturday and at the Manston Sports and Social Club on Sunday, should have sent a very clear message to the Leader of Thanet District Council (who attended for part of Saturday’s meeting), to those at present in control of Manston Airport and to what at present passes for “leadership” at County Hall. Contrary to the suggestion made recently that Thanet’s second Draft Local Plan, which seeks to zone Manston for housing and industrial use, has “killed off hope” of re- opening Manston as a commercial airfield progress towards the necessary Development Consent Order is moving inexorably forward.
The decision by the Planning Inspectorate to dismiss the feeble objections raised on behalf of Messrs Cartner and Musgrave leading to a Ministerial decision to grant RiverOak access to the site to carry out the necessary Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) denote a recognition that the project to re- open Manston is, as I have consistently said, of National significance.
In tandem with the most thorough EIA ever undertaken in East Kent the company seeking to acquire Manston will, having identified every household with a potentially affected interest in the airfield, not only in Thanet but in Herne Bay, Canterbury, Sandwich, Deal and Dover write to them to seek observations. There will then be a full round of on-the-record public consultations available to each location culminating in the formal submission of the full environmental and business case for consideration by the Planning Inspectorate. There will then be a full public inquiry and a recommendation made, following consideration of all the evidence, by the Inspector to the Secretary of State for Transport who will take the final decision whether or not to grant the Development Consent Order. This process will take time and will cost RiverOak a great deal of the money that Cllr. Wells, the present Leader of TDC, claims that the company does not have. When national interest is at stake the effort and expenditure are worth it.
Last year air freight traffic grew by nearly seven per cent. With Brexit and the need to compensate for the loss of European business by developing new markets in Asia and the Far East we are going to need much more freight, as well as passenger, capacity in the South East. That capacity, without Manston Airport simply will not be available. The facility is going to be vital to service our Country’s immediate and future needs.
For the sake of UK limited, as well as for the prosperity of East Kent, I urge all of those in the area who support this cause to both write in objection to Thanet’s Local Plan proposals for the airport and to respond to a Kent County Council consultation on the proposed Thanet Parkway station from which County Hall has noticeably airbrushed out Manston Airport while concentrating on a ‘ Stone Hill Park’ that does not exist on any map known to man. It is the future of our children and our grandchildren that is at stake.
Sir Roger Gale MP and Carol Vorderman launch all-party group for general aviation
“RiverOak – Manston Airport Aviation Academy
Manston Airport Public Support Meeting – Gate Closing!
Public Meeting for Supporters to be Held on Saturday 4th February 2017
Tickets for the Public Support meeting for an Aviation future for Manston have been very popular. There are just twenty tickets left for anyone who wishes to attend and show their support. An excellent line up of speakers will detail the business opportunities at Manston as an Aviation hub. The meeting will be chaired by David Foley, CEO of Thanet Chamber of Commerce.
This technical meeting, supported by groups fighting to save the airport, will take place in the Winter Gardens (Queens Hall) Margate, from 10 am till 2 pm on Saturday 4 February 2017. It will be a platform for relevant subject experts to explain how Manston Aviation Hub could generate a viable business and revenue streams for Manston from cargo handling, aircraft recycling, pilot training and private flying, and a spaceport.
Overall it will amount to a clear statement of the case for accepting that Manston can be a sustainable, viable aviation services hub, bringing employment and innovation to Thanet for many years, and making full use of a valuable existing asset.
The meeting has been organised by Thanet Liberal Democrats – but is in no way a political platform and there will not be any political speeches. All those who support Manston as an Aviation Hub are welcome.
MAN UP Manston Meeting Saturday 4th February 2017
January 2nd 2017
1. Access ticket checking, microphone stewards, donation receivers (with buckets) – volunteers welcome
Public Enquiry for Change of Use Planning Appeal (24th Jan 2017) – Delayed
RiverOak welcomes permission to access Manston Airport site from the Planning Inspectorate
December 15, 2016
On Monday 19 December the Planning Inspectorate confirmed to Bircham Dyson Bell, lawyers for RiverOak, that Section 53 authorisation (permission to access the Manston Airport site), has now been granted.
Thanet District Council withdraw change of use planning objections
December 15, 2016
2. To allow the public and press to listen to the debate and the vote but exclude them during the Barrister’s advice
3. To hear the whole item in full session.
The motion was subsequently carried.
“The UKIP committee members voted to follow officer and barrister advice, as to vote in any other way would have been considered an unreasonable decision which would in all likelihood have resulted in reputational and financial damage to the Council. Also the credibility of the planning committee could have been brought into question.
“UKIP councillors remain hopeful that required evidence will still come forward in support of an operational airport with evidence to satisfy a planning inspector.”
Manston – case study in conflict by Lembit Opik