Thursday, May 24, 2012

Another day another dollar TDC discuss Manston

Disappointed not to see any excitement outside the council offices tonight as the council debate Manston Airport with extra helpings of night flights. Any how THE COMMENTS IN THIS POST WILL BE MY OWN VIEWS AND SUBJECT TO CORRECTION and may well be wrong please use the comments section at the bottom of the post to correct the inevitable errors.

A quick thought before hostilities in the debate begin, apart from two members in the labour(Greens), the group were in support of night flights last time this was debated.

A petition presented to the council will not be considered by the council as of the 2200 odd signatures only 700 of those could be confirmed by email or read addresses. A bit odd ?

Clive Hart says Airport boss Charles Buchanan is a man he could do business, really. Bob Bayford pointed out that the time he had to challenge the councils motion was at three minutes not enough which seems a fair point . Still for those of us who distrust opinion polls Bayford, pointed out that while the council found 70 odd percent not in favour of night flights although Manston have found a similar number in favour.

As you can imagine things get heated at these meetings, Sandy Ezekiel upset at being barracked, by some members of the public sitting to my left, some of whom were making offensive and defamatory comments. These in my opinion were a rabble, however the mob being referred to looked to me like the usual crowd attracted by the Labour group. No surprise Sandy complained at the barracking from these people, referring to them as a rabble Still oddly the Chair unsympathetic to free debate rather than support him, demanded Ezekiel apologise which he did to those of us who respect elected representative although not mob.

One overall impression is how jobs really don't come up on the Labour horizon, although concerns of Thanet people in respect of having an opportunity of work are uppermost in those on the conservative side. Still at the heart of Labour, the dependency culture is uppermost, we see it with the unprincipled way they acquired support to keep in power at the AGM, support for a bloated public sector, and keeping people trapped in the benefits system.

Well at half eight it looks like the debate will drone on for some time, unfortunately and I have to go work, still I don't doubt Labour will win the vote how sad. Any way as Iris Johnson speaks of ancient history I have to leave.


  1. Huge thanks for publishing this. I was unable to make the meeting due to work. I would be amazed if there was any result other than "No".

    Re. your chat with the TDC Clerk last week, obviously I was right behind you and heard the whole thing. I hope TDC learns from KCCs example on the use of technology during meetings. I know weve been here before but we need to move forward. You werent causing any trouble there so there was no real need to make such a fuss over it.

    I found the staring problem too, particularly Worrow who was doing the Exorcist head-spinning thing.

  2. James Cheers s for the compliment , you didn't miss much.

    Thankfully there was no more than the usual discourtesy, although I have to say the rabble was as described by sandy Ezekiel , shocked that the chair seemed to me at least to act I'm such a partisan manner.

    Still the rabble did quiet down after what appeared to be instruction from one of Clive's cabinet members.

  3. So according to Simon the reason that cargo planes need to land at Manston after 11pm is that they may have to wait for the aircraft to cool down before they can take off because of the fuel/cargovweight on board. It a bit like the wrong kind of snow argument. If the airline knows it hot in Africa then don't overload the plane for the conditions. Is it hot in Africa?

  4. Huge setback for the whole of East Kent it is a ridiculous decision. Thanet has been given huge road investment on the premise it was to develop Manston Airport for the good of East Kent and then they turn their back.

    Thanet should be removed from eligibility of the Regional Growth Fund and the planned £10 million rail investment should be used to upgrade rail links to Sandwich, Deal, Dover and Folkestone where people want jobs.

  5. what about the aquifer?

  6. Labour will turn Thanet into the pits if they remain in office. As the previous correspondent so rightly says, our neighbouring districts all want the jobs that TDC seem determined to turn away.

    I have said it before and will do so again, for Labour always seem to think that social deprivation and benefit dependency equals Labour voters. They rant on about services and the NHS without a thought of where the revenue is to be generated in a jobless society. The even bigger laugh, if it were not so tragic, is their shouting about social mobility when they closed the grammar schools in most of the country.

    Oh, and before someone tells me such schools are socially divisive, let me remind them that the new mayor of Margate is a little lad from a good Labour home who went to Dane Court. Mind you, like others of the brethren, he now is against grammar schools having got his education.

    Presumably the rest of us still need dumbing down so we can be properly led by the politburo.

  7. 08:58 That's not quite what I said at and I'm trying to explain the physics in a couple of sentences.

    What I'm saying is that aircraft can be delayed for a number of reasons and a a consequence may lose their time slots with Eurocontrol, particularly during the busy summer months.

    This is also the same time when temperature becomes even more of a critical factor for heavily loaded cargo aircraft that may take on a load at point A, let's say Dubai and the stop-off at point B, which may be Cairo to take on some more.

    If the temperature at B) is unusually high in the late evening when the aircraft is scheduled to depart after being loaded - let's say a temperature inversion - then you reach a situation where the runway's take-off distance to altitude may not be within limits for the loading of the aircraft and the engine thrust available at a thinner air density.

    To cut a long story short, the aircraft either unloads or waits. Either way, it misses its departure slot of +/- 30 minutes to join the airways to Europe.

    So if you have reached this far in my explanation, you will understand that some flexibility is required at Manston or the carrier may simply look for an alternative airport where he knows he can be delayed but still arrive the same day.

    Hope that makes sense!?

  8. Roll back to 2004:

    INVESTORS have heard it all before. The old Battle of Britain airport Manston - now renamed Kent International - is set for take-off, and poised to become a viable alternative 'London' airport to the big three of Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted as well as Luton and Docklands' City airport.
    All this used to be spouted by the beleaguered Wiggins property group and its colourful chief executive Oliver Iny.
    What has changed is that Wiggins is now PlaneStation and Iny has been ousted in a putsch engineered by the company's biggest investor, Prudential.
    More fundamentally, the company is being run by a man who has spent the last two years making a significant name delivering on promises.
    Martin May joined PlaneStation as chief executive in the spring, taking time off from chairmanships at Cape and McNicholas.

    Result - Planestation and EUJet collapsed in a heap of debt. Even 4 starcouncil KCC chipped in and even they could not get passengers to use Manston.

    Roll forward to 2012 and Flybe gave it a shot and failed to attracted passenger numbers. Current owners loosing millions and want to sell.

    In the meantime regional airport Southend has had major investment by its owner, built a railway station and attracted Eastjet to run to 8 European destinations.

    Get real Manston is not the airport of choice for South Eeast England.

    I see that HSDeal has jumped in maybe they can tell us how many passengers from Deal use HS1 and does it justify the KCC subsidy of £190,000 pa.

  9. Manston has the potential to provide jobs but not if it only available part time.

  10. With Infratil leaving, and the airport worthless and not viable, how will the aquifer be cleaned up?TDC's politicians and civil servants have done nothing except lie to the public.

  11. Manston does have the ability to attract jobs but as an airport not as many as you think. Easyjet at Southend for 800,000 passengers per year is generating 150 at the airport and 150 within the airline and many of these are not local jobs. A bit different from the 3000 promised in the Infratil paid for independent report. But Infratil has to be careful that it is not misleading potential buyers as the recent float of Facebook has shown. Looks like they are being sued for the hype now that the share price has fallen.

    But Manston put to other uses with its new road link and promised rail link could generate a lot more jobs. Take a look at the former US airbase at Kings Hill and see how prosperous the area is from a low start.
    I am sure that a tourism related development could be achieved and ramsgate would avoid being blighted. Who knows they may even sell some of the Pleasurama flats if they are no longer under night flight paths.

  12. 0448 manston is on the aquifer and bust - thanet is not short of building land/derelict sites/contaminated sites or empty houses.

    Something more than the council sucking up to builders is required.

  13. I think sucking up to voters in the Ramsgate wards is more the case. Sod the rest of us.

  14. Had a chat with a friend of mine who harps on all the time about the potential damage to the aquifer by Manston airport... which I partly understand... what I don't understand is that in its place he recommends residential and economic zones! I tried to explin that those developements would cause more damage!

  15. Trying to explain things to the Manston Nimbys is not easy so you have my admiration for giving it a go, 11:22.

  16. will this include "private" night flights ?

  17. no night flights and infratil selling up so how will the airport be cleaned up if the councillors say they are in favour of it?

  18. Gawd struth.
    How many times does it need to be said?
    Manston will never be a viable passenger airport because it is in the wrong place.
    It was an RAF base precisely for that reason.
    If you think Buchanan is interested in anything other than cargo, you are kidding yourself.
    A letter in the IOTG this week says it all:
    "Why do the people of Thanet believe Charles Buchanan.......that night flight equals thousands of jobs?
    The poor people of London City Airport believed him when he was manager there. he promised 3,135 jobs to operate an extra 36,000 flights. He got his flights but created only 726 jobs and only 200 of these went to local people."

  19. Presumably, 2:52, you work on the premise that if you say something often enough it becomes the truth.

    Elsewhere in the country former RAF bases now operate as successful airports. What was once out in the sticks, the old yardstick for a military field, is now invariably close to somewhere. It's called urban sprawl.

    Even if your figures for City Airport are correct, those jobs are still worth having to those that have got them or would you prefer we perpetuate the benefits culture so beloved of the left.

  20. An airport isn't the only job creator Tom in Thanet or elsewhere and more jobs will be created without Manston. And Manston is on the aquifer. Jobs without clean drinking water?

  21. Better an airport on the aquifer than an industrial estate or masses of housing and jobs need to come from all sorts of sources including Manston.

  22. Why have an airport on the aquifer when drinking water is more important?

    An industrial estate/houses would be almost as bad, and jobs are required from different sources - but TDC were relying on Manston to provide all the lost jobs.

    KCC/TDC have no regeneration plans at all for Thanet.

    Manston can only be a field to protect the aquifer.

  23. At the heart of the discussion was the very real, raw ambition of Labour to grab power at any cost.

    Typically Labour bods, understand little outside the artificial world of the public sector financed by the taxpayer, Labour cynically changed their mind about Manston in the run up to district elections, most of the old boy's now in receipt of generous allowances were in favour of night flights last time round. Its amazing what people will do for a few extra grand.

    I'm afraid at the end of the day it's all about money. And stuff everyone else.

    I hope that Manston owners have the legal latitude in this to tell Thanet council mind their own business which is about looking after no.1 Councillors and Officers.

    Just what is Labours strategy for encouraging new jobs apart from increasing the number of jobs for councillors.

  24. anon 2.52

    Could they be carrying at night very private cargo for the very wealthy who have very 'exclusive tastes' ?

    The sort of cargo that people prefer not to talk about.

  25. "I hope that Manston owners have the legal latitude in this to tell Thanet council mind their own business which is about looking after no.1 Councillors and Officers."

    Does that also apply to Dreamland Live where potentially many construction jobs will be created?

  26. Tom Clark 4.10

    That is my point. What was once out in the sticks is.....still out in the sticks.

    It's not a matter of saying it often. It's a matter of fact.

  27. 10:13, your comment makes no sense at all. If Manston was still out in the sticks what would be the problem with aircraft activity. Also, to remind you, you said Manston was only suitable as an RAF base whereas I pointed out that many other former RAF bases are now airports. Presumably you choose to ignore anything that does not support your case.

  28. OK. I'll try and explain what I mean.
    An airport at Manston, geared to passenger and holiday flights would have only local residents to rely on for regular custom.
    You say to an American tourist "How about flying to Manston?"
    They say "How far is it from London?"
    You say "about 90 miles"
    They say "How do I get to the city from there?"
    You say " Well.... a really expensive taxi. No bus service to the nearest rail station ( for the foreseeable future) and if there was it will take between one and a half and two and a half hours and another 36 quid to make the journey after you have flown for 6 hours"
    They say " Anywhere closer and cheaper with good connections to the city?"
    You say " Yes Gatwick, Heathrow or Luton"

    They say " Forget Manston then"

    If people from abroad want to visit Ramsgate or Margate or Canterbury or Dover (although Dover is a place to arrive and leave fairly fast) it's an option but have you tried getting to any of those places from Manston without your own transport?

    The rail connection won't happen for years if at all.
    Does this make my point any clearer?

  29. Strange, I thought your worries were the aquifer, pollution, breaches of the 106 and fraud, with the cops running round feeling collars all over the place.

    Now it is distance from London. Well, in case you had overlooked the fact, that is of no consequence to cargo carriers whatsoever. Back to the drawing board for the next objection, sunshine.

  30. Well said, 2:35, you beat me to it although it will not make any difference. Anon, 11:23, is against the airport and will trundle out one objection after another.

  31. It's hard to have to read the amount of misinformation being posted on this and similar blogs. Manston has some of the most lax controls anywhere in the UK. There is total flexibility to accept late flights and flights which have been delayed for one reason and another. (Ask EUjet - they took full advantage of this flexibility.) The only stipulation is that, if it keeps happening with the same aircraft, and that aircraft is one of the noisiest 1% of aircraft flying in the UK, you pay a fine. Aircraft which aren't noisy don't pay a penny. This isn't unreasonable and even with the fines, it is still a lot cheaper to use Manston than one of the proper airports. In addition, any number of charter flights can use the airport at night. What Infratil was asking for, was to be allowed to "schedule" flights at night. The numbers they were asking for were excessive. In nutshell, that's it. All this talk about Labour not wanting jobs is just hogwash. Nobody has prevented the airport from operating. It doesn't use a fraction of the flexibility already available to it and it has failed to create a fraction of the jobs which were promised. There demonstrably no link between "flexibility" and jobs.

  32. I have not said my worries are pollution or the aquifer. In fact I have not voiced what my worries are at all. But of course that is of no consequence to the pro expansion lobby. As long as they can diss any argument against. No need to bother with any penetrative analysis.Just keep calling the arguments against rubbish. That oughta do it.

    The distance from London is of great consequence to cargo carriers who operate a well funded and half decent service. Not to the half arsed, cheapo lines that operate currently to and from there though, no.

    Tell you what, here's an idea. Why don't you pro people put a persuasive argument to explain to us lesser mortals the reasons Manston will succeed as a passenger hub.

    Come on, what has it got going for it? What irresistible, tantalizing facilities and conveniences has it that airports closer to....well...just about anywhere, don't have.

  33. Trouble is 10:02, because you do not use any name to identify yourself none of us have an idea what you have said before. If you read through the anonymous comments on this thread the aquifer does come into the case against and there is no way of telling whether or not you introduced it.

    Fact remains that the same old anti-airport arguments are trundled out giving the impression that it would not matter what the other side suggested.

    Truth is, only time will tell, but ultimately the shortage of runway space in the South East will demand better use is made of existing facilities. Otherwise we are back to Boris island.

  34. 10:02

    How about one of the longest runways in the UK and close to the gateway to Europe, like the tunnel terminal and channel ports. Fly in from America, pick up your hire car and an hour later on route to France and beyond. Beats the journey from Heathrow or Gatwick everytime.

  35. Why on earth would you fly to Manston to go to France?
    Why not fly to France?
    A long runway? Oh well yes that settles it. How can the major carriers resist?

    Is that all you can offer?
    I rest my case.

  36. You are obviously a lawyer using such high court jargon. Falls off chair in hysterics.

    (Nervous laughter, backing away)

  38. 09:45 good points but how can fines be imposed when Infratil and TDC removed the monitors in 2006?

    Night flights, overflights and the aquifer show how willing the Infratil were to breach the required safety regulations.

    Now they've sold up and walk away leaving missed revenue and pollution and discredited politicians and civll servants.

    Not TDC's finest hour is it?