Saturday, 26 July 2014

Manston Airport RiverOak letter to Thanet District Council.

This is the new and important letter relating to the airport, it doesn't copy easily and I am having to type bits of it out manually, I will endeavour to tidy up the formatting and add some thoughts of my own when I get time.

24 July 2014

Cllr Iris Johnston
Leader
Thanet District Council

RE: MANSTON AIRPORT CPO

Dear Iris:

I am writing to you in order to put RiverOak’s position in relation to Manston Airport firmly on
the record. We have been following events very closely since our informal meeting on 18 June
but during that time we have made no formal or public statement as to our position. In light of
the motion approved by your Council on 10 July and the fact that our name was mentioned
publicly we feel that it is now appropriate for us to make our intentions clear. RiverOak seeks to
be Thanet’s commercial partner through the CPO process and is willing to negotiate partnership
and indemnity agreements in good faith and in short order.

About RiverOak

RiverOak is a broad-based strategic asset manager specializing in the restructuring and
rehabilitation of troubled assets. We presently manage over $350 million in current assets and
have completed well over $1 billion in transactions over the last fifteen years. The principals at
RiverOak have extensive experience in both operational turnaround and asset enhancement
including ground up management of complex asset restructuring and large scale infrastructure
rehabilitation which includes specific experience with airport turnarounds and restructuring in
the northeast and southwest US. Our strategies focus on fostering the growth of productive, and
sustainable long term commercial enterprises. We are firm in our belief that Manston has a
viable future across many lines of air freight, aviation services including maintenance, recycling,
private charter and commercial passenger services, once the airport is on a firm financial footing.
We bring very relevant experience in underwriting, financing and structuring cargo airports,
airport fuel depots and MRO operations.

Our Dealings with Ann Gloag

We first expressed an interest in Manston in the third week of April when the closure
consultation was underway but before the airport actually closed. Mrs. Gloag’s team
immediately gave us full financial disclosure. On 29 April we visited Manston and on 2 May we
met Mrs. Gloag at her Perthshire home.

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During this time our team carried out a full analysis of Manston’s operating performance and
produced a turnaround plan which showed the airport moving from annual trading losses of over
£3 million to break even in approximately sixteen months. We budgeted for those losses; we
added a significant contingency in case the turnaround took longer and we allowed for essential
capital expenditure. We also budgeted for the purchase price and essential legal costs.

We made three offers to Mrs. Gloag, culminating on 15 May with an offer to pay the full asking
price. All three offers were rejected for reasons which have never been made clear to us. We
have had no contact with Mrs. Gloag or her team since 15 May.

RiverOak’s Actions since the Closure of Manston on 15 May

Within days of the closure it became clear that the community in Thanet faced a stark choice:
either accept the closure with all the consequent economic damage, or seek to gain ownership
and control of Manston through a compulsory purchase. It soon became apparent that there was
strong groundswell of local support for CPO and that the only body with statutory CPO powers
was Thanet District Council. It was also made clear by you that Thanet had neither the funds nor
the expertise to embark on a CPO procedure without the full support of a well-funded partner.

Despite the closure of Manston we remained convinced that it could be successful and profitable
and that we should put ourselves forward as Thanet’s partner. However, as a US fund with
limited understanding of English law, and as a matter of standard practice,, we decided to take
the best legal advice possible. We hired Wragge Graham for both the public and private sectors.
We also consulted with James Maurici QC and Lord David Pannick QC, both experienced and
distinguished practitioners in the field of public law. I have set out below a summary of the
questions we raised and the answers we received.

1. In these particular circumstances is Thanet obliged to put a proposed partnership with a private
sector partner out to tender? No, because the contract is not for public supply and is essentially
for the acquisition of land and the reinstatement of an operating airport. Thanet can therefore
enter into an agreement with RiverOak without any further process.

2. Do the EU’s State Aid restrictions apply here? No, not if RiverOak is going to fully indemnify
the Council against all costs incurred in the CPO process no public money will be used and
therefore there will be no State Aid issues

3. Is Thanet Council able to enter into an agreement with RiverOak whereby RiverOak covers all
the Council’s costs, including the eventual purchase price; takes a transfer of the freehold title
from the Council and enters into an obligation to reinstate the airport and operate it as an airport?
Yes, and agreements of this kind are becoming the norm in CPO procedures throughout England
and Wales. In a letter to Sir Roger Gale dated July 9, 2014, the then Planning Minister, Nick
Boles MP, said “I can confirm that it is quite usual for a private developer to indemnify a local
authority for the costs of a compulsory purchase order, including both the compensation to be
paid to those whose land is taken and the administrative costs of the order.”

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4. Are there any circumstances in which individual councilors could be held personally
responsible? Given that there will be a full indemnity from RiverOak there is no prospect of a
personal financial risk to Councilors.

We have given careful consideration to this advice. To be clear, what is proposed involves a
transfer of ALL the risk surrounding the CPO from Thanet District Council to RiverOak. If the
CPO fails for some unforeseen reason we will have to meet all the legal costs. Similarly if the
eventual price of the land is higher than expected, we will have to pay it. We are not asking for
any public funds to support this process; not from Thanet, not from KCC and not from the
British Government

We have carried out our own risk assessment and we are prepared to carry that risk Why?
Because we believe that a well conducted CPO process will succeed and because we believe that
a reinstated Manston Airport can become successful and profitable over time.

RiverOak’s Commitment to the Manston Project

When we offered Mrs. Gloag her asking price on 15 May it was for a fully equipped, fully
operational and fully licensed international airport. Two months later over 90% of the staff have
terminated, the license has been revoked and most of the equipment has been sold . You might
say that the business has been systematically stripped. So why in the face of this are we willing,
on behalf of our investors, to accept all the risks of a CPO? Allow me to offer you the following
facts and observations:

* There are strong indications that the carriers and freight forwarders who used Manston prior to
its closure will return as soon as it is operational. One of the carriers has already promised to
increase the number of their flights by 30%.

* The factors which led those carriers new to Manston to indicate a willingness to switch to
Manston when we worked on our turnaround plan at the end of April have not altered. The
pressures they face at other airports continue to increase, and for perishable business in
particular, other airports are simply unable to match the quality and speed of service for which
Manston was legendary.

* Cargo capacity constraints continue to mount at airports in the South East of England. The
Department for Transport forecasts that by 2020, £42 billion of air cargo will be lost to London
airports because of capacity constraints. Manston’s restoration to full operating status will leave
it well placed to capture part of that business

* We believe that the task of reassembling the Manston workforce can be readily
accomplished.. Many are still without work and others who have accepted jobs further afield
have indicated a willingness to return. There is a loyalty and commitment to Manston on the part
of former staff which has survived the brutality of the closure.

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* The Aviation Minister and the Civil Aviation Authority have indicated a willingness to work
closely with us to achieve a speedy restoration of the license.

* The demand for aviation engineering services continues to strengthen. This covers a range of
activities from maintenance and repair (MRO) to aircraft teardown and re-cycling in partnership
with a major airframe manufacturer, with whom we are in the process of commissioning a major
piece of research.

* There are interesting changes taking place in the passenger market with Easyjet’s competitors
considering their response to Easyjet’s newly dominant position at Gatwick. We have strong
grounds to believe that one of those competitors will consider Manston as a possible base for
operations south of the Thanes commencing in the summer of 2016.

* Demand by business jet users in the south east of England market continues to grow rapidly
and we have already identified potential customers who would make use of an Fixed Base
Operating facility at Manston.

RiverOak’s Plan to re-open Manston

We will work closely with the Council under the terms of our proposed partnership and
indemnity agreement to ensure that the compulsory purchase order is achieved as quickly as
possible. This includes a possible public inquiry and legal challenges. As soon as we obtain
possession of the site we will:

* Work with the CAA towards an early and full reinstatement of the aerodrome license

* Begin an urgent and comprehensive procurement process for essential equipment to replace
what has been sold off in recent weeks

* Begin the work of recruiting and reinstating an operational team necessary to meet licensing
requirements and to handle restored and new business

* Set a date for Manston’s re-opening with maximum publicity and media exposure locally, in
the UK and internationally.

RiverOak’s Plan for a re-opened Manston

Perishable cargo represented Manston’s core business for several years before closure. Its
reinstatement and expansion will be RiverOak’s top priority. Perishable cargo represented Manston’s core business for several years before its closure. Its reinstatement and expansion
will be RiverOak’s top priority. This will be accompanied by the re-commissioning of the border post and by a major marketing effort directed at growers in the countries of origin, as well as
freight forwarders and carriers. #
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* Previously, inbound aircraft carrying perishables usually departed Manston empty to take on
return loads at other airports. Promoting outbound loads from Manston will be made a top
priority.

* New non-perishable cargo business will be handled for already identified carriers who seek a
reliable base within the European Union, close to a major population center, at an airport which
can offer them the quality and speed of service not available at competitor airports. The
relocation of these new carriers to Manston will be secured during the first 12 months following
the airport’s re-opening.

* RiverOak’s firmly held view is that Manston’s cargo traffic will represent the foundation upon
which the financial stability of the business will be based. Subject to this caveat, RiverOak
remains interested in exploring the overtures from the low cost passenger carrier referred to
above. If market conditions in the passenger sector enable a sensible and profitable deal to be
done it is possible that passengers could return to Manston during the summer of 2016. RiverOak
will never make the kinds of extravagant passenger forecasts of our predecessors, but at the same
time we remain firmly of the view that there can be a role for Manston to offer flights to leisure
destinations in southern Europe.

* Aircraft engineering, in the form of teardown and MRO, is the other core element in
RiverOak’s plan. This will take longer to put in place but represents a major opportunity for
Manston to secure first mover advantage in a market which is growing very rapidly as a direct
consequence of soaring sales of new aircraft.

* Typically new aircraft are much more fuel efficient and require less maintenance. However
their maintenance requires new and sophisticated technology which is often not available at
legacy MRO operations. It is because of this opportunity that discussions about a major
investment in a new state-of-the-art MRO facility at Manston have been ongoing with a major
manufacturer for several months. The intention is that Manston would become a recognized
international center for the maintenance of new generation aircraft.

* Teardown or parting-out describes the process by which mid-life or end of life aircraft are
carefully dismantled with as many parts as possible being either re-used or re-cycled. This is
partly a response to market conditions but mainly the discharge on the part of aircraft
manufacturers of their international obligations to ensure that old aircraft are no longer left to rot
in the desert or dumped in landfill sites. The discussions with the major aircraft manufacturer
envisage the creation of a number of teardown lines in newly built and equipped airside hangars
at Manston. Capital investment and new job creation will both be significant aspects of this
focus on repairs, maintenance and teardowns.

* Executive jet business is one of the fastest growth areas in aviation and demand in the south
east of England is particularly strong. Manston’s strength is that it is outside London air space
and has excellent road connections. We have already identified a number of opportunities and
intend to invest in the facilities necessary to support this type of business which can be very
profitable.
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Next Steps

Our view is that the signing of an agreement between the Council and RiverOak has to be the top
priority. The Council’s instruction to the Cabinet made it clear that support for the CPO is
conditional upon the Council obtaining a full indemnity from a commercial partner. Equally,
from RiverOak’s point of view, we are ready to commit ourselves to the process but we cannot
do so until an agreement between us is in place.

Earlier in this letter I expressed my belief that there is nothing preventing the Council from
entering into an agreement with RiverOak immediately. This would enable work on the CPO to
begin without further delay. Indeed it is my view that time will be our greatest enemy. The CPO
process itself is likely to take many months. We are prepared for that. What we are not prepared
for is undue or in our view unnecessary or bureaucratic delay at this preliminary stage.

Conclusion

I feel it is important to have set out our position at length. We are strongly committed to this
project; we believe very strongly in the commercial case for Manston; we have already allocated
significant financial and human resources to the project; we have the full support of our
investors; we are ready to give Thanet a full indemnity. We are now anxious to start and have a
goal of having an agreement with the Council in place in the next 21 days.
In order to assist the process I have attached to this letter a copy of the Opinion of James Maurici
QC and Heads of Terms drafted by our solicitors.

With kindest regards,

Sincerely,

Stephen DeNardo
Chief Executive Officer

OK before discussing the letter in detail, first other airport news. 

Manston Airport’s website http://www.manstonairport.com/ has gone, more than 24 hours now and from the info below not likely to be a technical issue.
Whois Server: whois.tucows.com

Name Server: NS1.LIVEDNS.CO.UK

Name Server: NS2.LIVEDNS.CO.UK

Name Server: NS3.LIVEDNS.CO.UK

Status: clientTransferProhibited

Status: clientUpdateProhibited

Updated Date: 23-jul-2014

Creation Date: 12-oct-2009

Expiration Date: 12-oct-2015


Obviously this was expected in some ways but it did have the documentation there confirming the intention to build on the northern pasture, from about a year ago. 



Some thoughts on RiverOak and some links related to them.

This is their LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY OPERATING AGREEMENT as a fund manager.


This is the link to their website


This is a link to the page with links to all of their press releases on it

http://www.riveroakic.com/news.html  

http://persistent.blogs.com/persistent/2008/02/everyone-should.html

The next links relate to the team that Sir Roger Gale put together to promote the RiverOak offer http://www.bo.de/wirtschaft/wirtschaft-regional/die-grossen-unbekannten you will need to use an online automatic translation site like https://translate.google.com as the article is in German, Tony Freudmann, Sanjeev Joshi and Daryn Soards also come up as names in this story http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-kent-27411419  

My take on this one is to try and put as much information related to the current situation on Manston so if anyone has anything else worth adding to the post my email is on the sidebar.

Many thanks for this one, which is an official US government form submitted by RiverOak with a box for Airlines and Airports which they haven’t checked while they have checked the Real Estate box http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1550363/000114420414000099/xslFormDX01/primary_doc.xml

224 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. A superb start to the weekend, thanks Michael!

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    2. The original document is available for download on the SMA FaceBook page as a pdf file, it isn’t possible for me – with my limited computer skills – to copy and paste all of the text from it, so I had to type a lot of it out manually.

      I would appreciate it if any of you who belong to the SMA group could check the above post for errors and comment either to the effect that it is ok or comment with any errors I have made so I can correct them.

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    3. SEMBOB,

      your 10:06 reminds me of that expression being chuffed to NAAFI breaks, and that's what I am.

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  2. the duffers will stuff it up

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    1. "Playground stuff like calling real people by their time stamp or surname alone, referring to groups as gangs, old duffers and so on will result in deletion."

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    2. Sorry Peter that was it all further comment from you here will be deleted.

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  3. What would be good, especially as no one else is interested, would be for Riveroak to produce their turnaround in 16 months plan. It may be of commercial interest but surely by now TDC should be given a copy so they can see for themselves just what makes Riveroak so confident. This business plan is a fundamental bedrock of any CPO process so is vital in making the case for any Council based CPO process.

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  4. We also need guarantees that it will remain an airport, as well as more support for night flights from the Labour lot.

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  5. Difficult finding any commercial entity that will provide that sort of guarantee look at Pfizer for an example. SFP said they would build Royal Sands back in 2002 and its still a building / bomb site. Peter there is no such thing in business and that's reality not negative but then I understand you may not want to hear it.

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  6. Among other things the River Oak letter is an example to us all of how to organise one's thoughts and express them with clarity.

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  7. Michael just had this posted on FORS by Mike Harrison it needs serious debate

    "I have inherited a proposal from my predecessor regarding Leopold Street car park, following many complaints a solution had to be found to combat crime, anti social behaviour, drug trafficking, rough sleepers and other unacceptable activities, the Police were constantly being called down there and had said that unless something was done they would refuse to attend. It seems that what was agreed following consultation is not universally popular. So should it shut completely after 7 pm, should it be partially closed after 7 pm or should it be left open ?
    Discuss,,,,,,"

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    Replies
    1. Barry it’s a bigger issue, the underlying one being that most women – who do most of the shopping – won’t use it even during the day. Hence all of the shops that are available to let in King Street to Plains of Waterloo are now let as shops and yet there are two big ones vacant at the bottom of Harbour Street.

      Ramsgate town is essentially coming back to life around the available and safe parking.

      I will do a post about the issue next week, but there are some complexities involving the council that I need to sort out with them first.

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    2. I know just the company that can take difficult to manage assets and turn them around.
      Why don't TDC give NCP a call.

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    3. Can't TDC put CCTV there and stop it in its tracks?

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    4. there are 9 cameras in there just that they are 17 years old and may even just be a deterrent just trying to get that last clarified

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    5. TDC could take a few of the 32 in the Mill Lane car park - see Gazette report on Thanets CCTV.

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  8. This letter of intent by River Oak is so full of holes, If TDC rush in as they have been asked in to in the letter we are all in for many years of no rubbish collection or street lighting
    Let me point out a few
    1) Riveroak is a company that comes in and sorts out failing company's and sells them at a profit not a company that works over a long period of time
    2) They say their assets are $350 million but nowhere does it say how much money they have in the bank to fund a CPO or to start and run an airport
    3) Dealings with Ann Gloag they say they offered AG the full asking price? has anybody ever seen Manston on rightmove with an asking price or any other estate agent? Did this figure of £7.5m come out of the air or was it made up by an MP who knows that AG doesn't say much publicly. As we know there was far more debt taken on when she bought it. So why would she put it on the market for one third of what she paid?
    4) 8000 people singed the petition lets assume that all 8000 people came from Thanet then even with that amount of support it only represents about 7% of the population of Thanet, There has never been a survey of the people who are against the airport maybe that would be more?
    5) TDC are going ahead with RiverOak without fair competition with no tendering for any other company this will bite them in the courts if it ever gets that far
    6) RiverOak have expressed that they are going to fully fund the CPO up to its completion but if you look at the way a CPO works they can be liable for up to 10 years this would not lie with RO but would lie with TDC
    7) RiverOak have said they want to run an airport but nowhere in that letter does it say for how long do you think if TDC put a covenant on the land before handing it over saying it can never be anything else other than an airport do you still think RO would go for it ?
    8) Price, now we all know the cost of land in the UK and if you can build on it the price sky rockets. this is the case with Manston if you read the letter from RO they say they have put aside a contingency fund well lets hope they have for seen that their original £7.5m asking price would be seen as a 2% deposit.
    9) how can the possibly see Manston turning a profit if the don't know what the purchase price is going to be. Speaking of that also there is the interest payments to consider that would be many millions a year how would getting some of the old users back fund that amount repayments. If you look at their business plan that have used every possible type of use you can from an airport and still I cant see how they are going to break even
    10) they say they want to use Manstons quick turnaround on perishable goods, but after you factor in the road journey unless the its destination is in East Kent then any other airport is better for the importer
    11) £42 billion of air cargo sounds like a lot of money to an airport but when you think about for every 1000kg of cargo an airport may receive £15 so when a plane full of gold comes in at $42,000 per kg its not that much business and thats for the whole of the UK. Before Manston had to compete with other airport for cargo and lost the other airports will undercut Manston and force them out as they have already done. If you think about it, If Heathrow could be a housing estate tomorrow would the owners that about the profit in the short term ?

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  9. 12) recycling after a plane has had its engine removed its worth has been reduced to next to nothing about £12,000 and so much of that money is taken up with labour in breaking it up its not worth doing thats why they are left to rot in deserts.
    13) An aircraft garage run by Airbus or somebody wont they just be paying rent on a building that's if Airbus don't already have a runway and aircraft garage so they will have to find an aircraft manufacturer without the infrastructure to fix their own planes
    14) last one ) Why would RO rush TDC into a CPO when they are prepared to wait for ages for it to go though the courts, are they trying to make TDC make a mistake?

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    Replies
    1. Perp,

      Do you have any evidence to support your statement; are you able tell me what is your expertise and experience in these matters; can you explain why you legal view differs from those of two QCs who specialise in area of CPOs?

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    2. A CPO can be used to obtain land from one private company and hand it over to another but in this case the courts will say its a misuse of CPO powers as Manston can hardly be described as in the public interest it would be like using a CPO to take a bakers shop from one failed baker and give it to anther baker

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    3. And if you read the letter its not meant for TDC reading it was made for the public, propaganda!

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    4. Has not Manston had 15 years of trying to attract this very sort of business? Is RiverOak not a hedge fund company? Do RO not hope to get the land for a song, there is not an estate agent in the land that would value the land for less than £200 million. Have they shown TDC a Bank account full of money ready to proceed? can you show me where manston was on the market for £7.5 m?
      I have pointed out where I feel this letter of intent has flaws. I welcome anybody to prove me wrong

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    5. Until Anne Gloag shows her hand I don''t see how any court can decide on what is the best use of the land in the public interest. For all we know she could be planning a development that includes schools, medical facilities, community buildings, parks and play areas and other leisure facilities at no cost to the tax payer. We just don't know but one thing is for sure she is not just going to roll over.

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    6. Roll over she will not, I think they have woefully underestimated her seeing as she alone has more wealth than RiverOak look after in assets. And you know what they say money talks. Lets hope for TDCs sake that they don't leave themselves wide over to a law suit.

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  10. This situation regarding RiverOakLLC stinks to high heaven

    You have to ask why Roger Gale has been pushing them for so long, particularly when they have no back-ground in aviation as he presented them to have.
    They are not an aviation company, they are a property company and one which transforms sites that were used for other purposes into housing estates.

    You do not have to take my word for it, this is what RiverOak says about themselves:-
    “RiverOak Investment Corp., LLC invests in commercial and residential real estate through discretionary co-mingled, closed-end funds and private separate accounts.

    With a focus on creating value through repositioning and renovating, RiverOak pinpoints opportunities with demonstrated potential for superior risk-adjusted returns that provide investors with steady income and value creation”

    You would have to be a fool to accept that a US property company would come to the UK with the specific purpose of putting a continually FAILED airport into a working business, having spent millions. They are looking at a profit, and the same profit that Ann Gloag is looking at. All they have to do is to say that they failed to get the airport as a working enterprise, and then they build houses on the site and I don't mean luxury houses, but piling as many in as possible to make the biggest profit. They only want quick profits for their share-holders.


    This underhand way of doing things is completely wrong and any councillor who approves of this will be associated with very dodgy dealings. It is appalling.

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    Replies
    1. Diane if you and me think like that after 15hrs of seeing their letter what do you think a judge will think of it? They don't stand a chance in court and I hope someone at TDC pays the penalty for being so stupid and listening to an MP from another party

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    2. I agree, Purple Om. Just look in this RiverOak letter how they are trying to pressurise Thanet to do what they want and quickly, just like they tried to do with Ann Gloag

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  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  12. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    1. Diane removed for the following reason,"comments that may be libellous," as stated in guidelines below, please think before you post as I have limited time to monitor comments.

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  13. Well said Diane.. It does stink to high heaven and has all the hall marks of yet another TDC debacle. One can only hope that Iris takes a dim view of having a personal letter simultaneously "leaked" to the press. If RiverOak have any "specific experience with airport turnarounds" they clearly like to hide that particular light under a bushel - not a single mention of it on their website - many relating to real estate turn arounds though.

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  14. I think I have pretty much finished the updating the information in the post, I should point out here that I am not anti-airport however I don’t think a freight hub will work at Manston on both economic and environmental grounds. I would support a regional airport that I could actually fly to destinations from.

    I sincerely hope the information in the post will be helpful to everyone regardless of their opinion about the airport.

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  15. per your last comment in the blog itself I had heard that the link to the cargo hub was someone who had sat on the board of both companies but not at the same time.
    This is reminisce of Terry Painters presentation to Council in December 2002 when he was explaining how much building experience Shaun Keegan had (although he did say developer) turns out little they talked about could be attributed to Keegan
    Story here: http://pleasurama.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/so-what-has-shaun-patrick-keegan-ever.html and here
    http://pleasurama.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/so-what-has-spk-developed-part-2.html

    Lets hope history isnt about to be repeated

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  16. Regardless of one's thoughts on the airport, it's obvious to everyone that the same person is using at least three different user names on here.

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  17. I hear that councillors are being pressured to make a decision on Thursday in respect of signing a deal with RiverOak. Some councillors are feeling pretty uncomfortable with being bounced into this when the information they are receiving is all coming from River Oak itself. The problem, as I see it, is that River Oak is seeking to install itself as part of the proceedings. They have stated that they don't think TDC has the expertise to deal with the CPO and so, if they are funding it, they want to be involved. The letter from River Oak contains highly selective extracts from their own legal advice and we aren't told what question was asked to get these answers. As I understand it TDC hasn't even sought its own independent legal advice yet. They've spent something like £20k on commissioning a viability study but they haven't spent £1k on asking a barrister if the proposed use of a CPO could be challenged in court. The arrangement changes from being one where TDC is purchasing the airport and seeking a business partner, to one where the business partner is telling TDC what to do and expecting them to rubber-stamp decisions. In my view, the problem lies with Iris Johnston and the officers. Iris is far too in love with the idea of an airport to make balanced decisions, and the officers are far too inexperienced to anticipate the difficulties and negotiate a watertight agreement. Sadly, if you are going to deal with a aggressive property developer like RiverOak you need to spend a lot of money making sure you have good independent advice and you need to maintain your distance. Far better to let RiverOak and Ann Gloag sort it out between themselves. After all, she's a businesswoman and, if they offer enough money, she will sell. The CPO isn't needed.

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  18. Calling Riveroak liars is libelous. Remove all references or legal action will be taken against this blog.

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  19. interesting that on twitter Checksfield is spinning his ban as only because he supported Manston and for no other reason

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  20. anon at 9:16 read up on libel laws in the UK you can only libel named people. It would be difficult to libel a LLP as no one person is named.

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    1. Barry all of my research indicated that RiverOak are a reputable company and regardless of the letter of the law I am not prepared to support comment that says otherwise.

      Also could you kindly stick to the guideline over not referring to people by their surnames only, a small thing I know but it does tend to make the whole debate here degenerate.

      Delete
    2. point taken Michael however it is a shame that named bloggers, in this case Peter Checksfield, is maligning this blog on twitter because he didn't conform to the rules below but has no problem copy pasting his comments from twitter into this blog as an anonymous. Referring, on twitter, to this blog as being negative to Manston and ignoring the fact that he broke the guidelines is akin to throwing his toys out of the pram.

      Delete
    3. Barry the alarm bells really started ringing with the second guessing the identities of noms de blog and I will expand on this. Let us say that someone, particularly a person commenting under their real name like Peter, takes a known nom de blog like John Hamilton and says this nom de blog is actually a real person who they name.

      This then ascribes all of the comments made by that nom de blog to a real person, the potential for a major libel action is obvious.

      So I would say the ban was as much for his own protection as anything else.

      I have considerable sympathy for people who get a bit carried away with commenting on the blogs, this can run away to being an obsession, with several comments an hour for a whole day. I have been there myself and frankly when an issue like this is posted I have to check this blog far more often than is good for me.

      Delete
    4. Barry,

      Really. Surely you are not attempting to single handedly moderate twitter - I wish you luck. Peter has annoyed you maybe; but surely you do not need to pursue him on twitter via this blog. In my view arguments on twitter should stay on Twitter.

      Peter and I have had several run ins on this blog. Some were amusing and some not so. But it was always an equal and fair fight albeit rarely a necessary one.

      Barry, At the risk of upsetting you, you are often oversensitive which can cause the likes of 'John Hamilton' to regard you as a victim.

      Delete
    5. John funnily enough Peter has blocked me on twitter for reasons best known to himself. Others who feel his actions silly have sent me his tweets, and I thought it unfair that he maligned the blog here.
      So in some ways I agree with how twitter would be impossible to police even the police have problems with that.

      Delete
    6. Barry,

      So Peter has blocked you on Twitter. You should tell yourself, 'so what', and bear in mind that Twitter and the Blogospheres are rarely fair. Neither need they be. I always remind myself that I do not have any God given right not to be offended or annoyed by the actions of others, and that the same applies the other way around. On the other hand, persecution is unique and entirely another matter - a serious matter. However, I do not feel persecuted by someone for example calling me a twit and saying that my ideas are all b..locks and blocking me on some blog or other.

      Perhaps I should explain myself. At my school it was not acceptable by one's peers to report another person to teacher for some offence real or imagined. It was never acceptable to tell tales (split). With the only exception being where an actual crime had been committed, say stealing someone's pocket money. I embraced these mores without difficulty. To the extent that they still influence me today. I believe for the better. Which might help to explain why I disdain those who follow a solely political agenda. They bore me.

      Delete
    7. That said John I would not knowingly permit anyone to libel you or anyone else here, nor would I permit people to make derogatory comments about you or call you names.

      This is partly about trying to prevent the debate descending into a vitriolic argument, which is so incredibly boring for me, as I endeavour to read all of the comments, often on my mobile phone, out of context with the other comments, in bright sunlight, with my senior eyesight.

      One of the great benefits of not allowing anonymous comments is that I don’t have to read the comments of persistent offenders, who have been banned from commenting, all I have to do is press the delete button.

      Delete
    8. Michael you 1:02,

      I'm sorry, but I do not understand why you have addressed your remarks to me. They are unsolicited. At the risk of appearing an ingrate, I can look after myself. I hope you will forgive me when I say here in public that I do not trust you. This for reasons that I have earlier explained emails.

      It is curious that you did not ride to my rescue when Purple Om wished me an early death from cancer and threatened me with a heart attack. But it does not matter. I can handle the likes of Purple OM.

      Delete
    9. John if I missed such offensive comments and you followed the blog guidelines below, which as a responsible and articulate blogger you usually do, then I would have deleted them.

      If for some reason I haven’t please send me page url and I will be happy to delete them, although this will have to wait until I using a computer, this evening.

      Delete
    10. John I have asked you many times to not include me in any of you comments or to comment on my comments,
      You have misconstrued my comments to your advantage. All I ever said was, the nastiness that comes out in your comments was not good for your heart
      Never talk to me again, you have nothing worthwhile ever to say. I really hope you understand but you keep on as if a new day will want me to talk with you again that will never happen so for the last time don't talk to me ever

      Delete
    11. Purple Om,

      No that is not what you said. But that is bye the bye. You delude yoursel if you imagine that I am courting your favour, though it is an amusing notion. Perp you should know that I will mention you and comment on your utterings whenever I choose to do so.

      Delete
  21. anon at 8:23 which 3 are the same person?

    ReplyDelete
  22. I should point out here that over the last three days while I have been putting comment moderation on at night, when I can’t monitor the blog, I have also been turning anon comments on. Frankly discussions are too heated at the moment to leave the blog completely open.

    So if you comment anonymously, or respond to anonymous comments it may help to understand that my intention is to turn on moderation and anon comments at about 10pm allowing any comments that conform to the blog guidelines below until I go to bed between 10.30 and midnight, and then turning anon comments and moderation off in the morning and allowing all the overnight comment that conform to the blog guidelines below.

    ReplyDelete
  23. The comment by anon at 9:05 contains a relevant caveat which should be heeded.

    I am not certain that AG would ever sell. Her ego would never permit it bearing in mind that she has some grandiose plan for Manston. This is not as an airport. It something which she describes as a legacy for her children, Whatever this may be, I cannot accept that it would benefit those lesser mortals who live in Thanet. In my view a CPO is the only way to wrest Manston Airport from AG.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John, I don't know where you get this info that Ann Gloag describes this as a legacy "for her children" and her only child is dead.

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. Sorry, it doesn't appear to be the case that he was her only child. By all accounts she still has a daughter, step children and grandchildren, as mentioned on various web sites.

      Delete
  24. John it very well may be the only way but it is not negative to point out that there needs to be a reality check which is hopefully why TDC needs to take their own legal advice. You can see the sense in that. RiverOAK do not seem adverse in ramping up the pressure on the mortals at TDC by sending a letter to Iris and at the same time releasing the letter to the press.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Barry,

      Barry, your 10:46.

      Which is precisely what I said in my opening sentence, is it not? I said, "The comment by anon at 9:05 contains a relevant caveat which should be heeded." Which serves to cover the rest of your comment.

      I commented on anon 9:05 soley because it struck me as being pure common sense.

      In addition it demonstrated a refreshing clarity of thought and expession.


      Delete
    2. John I am glad that finally some realism is starting to show itself.

      I wonder (caveat: if true) how the Save Manston people would feel if it turns out they are being used as a pawn in a bigger game. Having spoken off the record to several councillors I know they have the same feeling about being railroaded into a hasty decision. They believe it is political rather than commercial though

      Delete
    3. Barry,

      Your question about SMAG is clearly rhetorical.

      You say that some Councillors have doubts, this has been addressed by anon 9:05 and hence his wise advice to inquire and check, with care and persistence.

      Sadly, some people will always see a political agenda in everything they see hear, hear or touch. However, in the main they are best ignored.

      Barry, We are all pawns in a bigger game. Life is what happens between the plans we make.

      Delete
    4. My own feelings here are that there should be a public consultation about this, particularly as petitioning has been to Save the Airport and not to create an airfreight hub and scrap yard.

      It is one thing getting people to sign a petition to save Manston but I think it would be much harder to get people to sign a petition to create an airport that ordinary people can’t fly from.

      In effect the council are being pressured to save the airport, but instead of doing this they are supporting a freight hub, which equates to them being pressured to improve parking facilities in the centre of Margate but actually building a lorries only park on the Dreamland site.

      Delete
    5. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    6. Michael,

      Yeah right. Going to so a called 'public consultation' is nothing more than a political decison avoiding device worthy of Yes Minister. It would simply give AG the time she needs to make preparations and to prepare her order of battle which will ensure that we do not get our airport. And you know it, or you should.

      If we had a 'public consultion' on whether to go to war in 1939 we would still be consulting about today, only in German.

      Delete
    7. I do wonder if they understand that the airport hasn’t got planning consent diane, I am fairly certain that as soon as they tried to reopen the airport it would only take one local resident to request a judicial review to force the issue.

      This would inevitably result in a public enquiry, I honestly think that which ever side of the fence you stand on over the airport, a public consultation now would save problems later on, and could well prevent years of uncertainty while the site remains either unused or not used to its full potential.

      On the night flights issue, there has already been a public consultation and I think the only way to reverse that position would be another one.

      Delete
    8. Crossed over there John, I think the point here is that this is not about a national government going to war, but about a local council with a recent history of unfortunate commercial partnerships trying to give people an elephant when they asked for a pony.

      Delete
    9. Is there anyway of finding out if a high court will throw out TDC/riveroak for misuse of CPO powers? I have looked and I must admit I am a little stumped as I think there is a small chance a Judge may allow it. Would love to know for sure.
      It all boils down to TDCs big plan. If they can show its a part of their over all plan it maybe deemed to be in the public interest and there for be legal. But I cant help thinking its a David and Goliath moment with little TDC/RiverOak who cant find a stone.

      Delete
    10. Michael,

      I am confident that River Oak (if that is who you mean) understand and have studied the ramification. Not least they have had informed discussions with the transport Minister and similar. I am confident that River Oak have greater knowledge of the subject than anyone speaking on this blog.

      To be fair to you: perhaps you have you written to River Oak, the Transport Minister and our two MPs warning them of the dangers that you foresee? Are you able to share their reply on your blog?

      Delete
    11. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    12. I agree with Michael that there should be a public consultation, as if RiverOak's real aim is to create a freight hub and dump as they set out in their letter, this will be a blight for Ramsgate and it's residents. They will expect the ban on night flights to be lifted to accommodate freight schedules.

      I note in this letter to "Dear Iris" that Iris met with them on 18 June, which was several weeks' prior to the date that she met with the owner of the site, Ann Gloag.

      My view remains that RiverOak's real intention is transform the site into a housing estate, as it is a property company. Their stated intention is to discover unique real estate assets with up-side potential. This is an extract directly from their web-site:0

      RiverOak is different. RiverOak is relevant.
      We have a history of finding underutilized, distressed real estate assets and capitalizing on value-added opportunities…of discovering unique real estate assets with strong upside potential…of working with seasoned real estate development and management companies who are both strategically and tactically focused on their own specific areas of real estate expertise.

      RiverOak is specific. RiverOak is focused.
      So when an investment institution comes to us, they are dealing with real estate experts in the area where they want to invest. They are partnering with a real estate firm that understands the cycles, the fundamentals, the market vagaries and the people who develop and operate properties. They are partnering with a real estate firm that has consistently been able to visualize and quantify successful outcomes through investment strategies for real estate.

      Delete
    13. "I am confident that River Oak have greater knowledge of the subject than anyone speaking on this blog. "

      John, what gives you such confidence about RiverOak???

      Delete
    14. Michael,

      OK, let's not start exchanging fire with analogy and metaphor. Suffice to say the elephant is ready now to create many jobs. Whereas the Pony albeit cute first needs to grow into a mighty stallion in order to replace the powerful elephant. But before that time arrives AG will have covered Manston with thousands of houses.

      Michael, I am confident that you fully understand the dangers of delay, and that you are using it as tool to advance your purpose. Whatever that may be.

      Delete
    15. John my guess is that they, like Infratil have a very different perception of the UK, I think this is often a problem for foreign investors here, I once bough a Japanese limousine very cheaply, purely because it was called a Nissan Cedric.

      I think with Americans it would be particularly hard for them to understand our perception of long road and train journeys and I think this was a factor in the NZ based Infratil’s failure.

      I also think this has been a major factor in the difficulties in finding UK based operators and customers.

      I honestly don’t see how a freight hub will work, whereas in America the same distance from major manufacturers, road, sea and rail distribution centres, it most definitely would.

      I am for any major local employer where the pollution downside is outweighed by the economic upside, but I am fundamentally against a major foreign investor creating years of uncertainty here while they learn the same lessons as their predecessors.

      Delete
    16. There is of course another factor does Southend airport not offer the same cargo facilities and Riveroak want to introduce. flying time is negligible however southend is the other side of the dartford river crossing so marginally closer to motorways going north. and if I remember rightly is owned by AG

      Delete
    17. Diane, your 1:32 (is it really that late - I must be off)

      What I am confident in is that you are not a reliable witness, in my view. For reasons that I have outlined elsewhere and that you have chosen to ignore.

      Delete
    18. I am not a witness at all. Do you think we are in a court ?
      I just wonder why you express such extreme confidence in a US company that most people in this area seem to know so little about.

      On what I ask is this confidence based.

      You do not need to be so rude to people in your responses. Everyone has the right to have their say

      Delete
    19. Barry I think southend is owned by Stowbarts not ag

      Delete
    20. "I am confident that River Oak have greater knowledge of the subject than anyone speaking on this blog. "

      John, what gives you such confidence about RiverOak???


      By the way, you failed to answer this question.

      Delete
    21. diane,

      I shall try once again. The word 'witness' is not necessarily used in the Judicial sense. I cannot accept you as a witness to the facts. Should you wish to disabuse me then tell me your real name, what knowledge you have of the facts and how you came about that knowledge.

      I am talking about facts and not suspicion. I am sure you know the difference. Suspicion is never enough. If it is the case that you are doing nothing more than rehearsing your suspicions then please tell me and I can ignore you.

      On what you have told me so far I am driven to the conclusion that you know nothing about anything of substance.

      diane, It is not rude for someone to challenge your views. The similarities between your style and that of the Purp has not escaped me.

      Delete
    22. John I am confused you say that Diane is expressing suspicion and has no proof but I read everything that has been said about Manston and I see no proof by those that support Manston that Ann Gloag ever put Manston on the open market for sale.
      Is there some proof of this somewhere other than statements put out by our North Thanet MP and Riveroak. I note Ann Gloag has declined to make a statement about selling in fact all she has done is shut it down, hand back the CAA licence, lay off staff, and sell off surplus equipment. This would say that she is "clearing the decks" to use a nautical term

      Delete
    23. John,
      My "real" name is Diane.
      I have a degree in Law and Solicitors' Qualification, so I need no lessons from you on what a "witness" is thank you.
      I suggest that you stop trying to patronise me

      Delete
    24. Michael, I am obliged to complain about John Holyer, who accuses me of being another poster, using a false name, ie of being an imposter. This is a serious allegation and I would ask you to deal with it please.

      Delete
    25. If you say so. But you neither argue nor speak like a person that is trained in law. I find this curious. However, you do act like a person that grows angry and frustrated when another has the temerity to challenge their views. In this you are similar to one or two others on this blog.

      Delete
    26. John, I can assure I am not angry, but you seem to be describing yourself
      You failed to answer my question, and you were the one who threw out abuse not me.
      Accusing me of being an imposter is a serious allegation.
      I can see from the evidence on this blog that you are the one who utters insults and allegations at anyone who seeks to discuss a point but has an opinion other than yours.

      Delete
    27. Diane you have found one of the Thanet on line trolls please try not to feed him, If he gets no response he may go away but in my case that's not yet what's happened. Lets hope he goes the same way as peter

      Delete
    28. Diane at 4.48, please would you kindly read the blog comment guidelines below, and clarify what it is you would like me to do? If you intended to comment as a real person then you would need to change your blogger profile to do what mine does i.e. link to your full name, address and landline phone number.

      All other stances are all varying degrees of anonymity and are afforded varying degrees of redress here.

      John from his position of considerable dignity endeavours to educate us all, I assume he is both an aesthete and academic, I feel privileged to have learnt so much from the comments he directs towards me.

      Delete
    29. Michael,

      With your last paragraph you should emphasise that you are being sarcastic. If not some readers will believe you, and who could blame them. Still there is one thing, I have demonstrated that I am no snob, after all I am talking to you.

      Delete
    30. Michael, your 6:14 above

      With your last paragraph you should emphasise that you are being sarcastic. If not some readers will believe you, and who could blame them. Still there is one thing, I have demonstrated that I am no snob, after all I am talking to you.

      Delete
    31. John, as you are in repetitious expectation; while I am continually astonished that diplomat albeit retired will converse with a shop assistant, I will endeavour to do my best to assist you here.

      I trust you are familiar with the ode:

      Some hear and see him whom he heareth nor seeth not
      But fields have eyes and woods have ears, ye wot
      And also on my maids he is ever tooting.
      Can ye judge a man, (quoth I), by his looking?
      What, a cat may look on a king, ye know!
      My cat's leering look, (quoth she), at first show,
      Showeth me that my cat goeth a caterwauling;
      And specially by his manner of drawing
      To Madge, my fair maid.

      Delete
    32. Michael, your 7:50 pm

      You should not be astonished that I converse with a you. In the past I have conversed with a cannibal. He was the Minister of Agriculture and he ate that liver of seven year old girl to give thanks for winning the election. They hanged him. He was quite a pleasant chap actually, well apart form being a cannibal. We all have our funny ways. Some like to hurl poetry.

      Delete
    33. ‘pologies about the poetry John ‘twasnt my intent to threaten you with a railway share, here is a lose adaptation:

      'Who are you talking to?' said the King, going up to Alice, and looking at the Cat's head with great curiosity.
      'It's a friend of mine — a Cheshire Cat,' said Alice: 'allow me to introduce it.'
      'I don't like the look of it at all,' said the King: 'however, it may kiss my hand if it likes.'
      'I'd rather not,' the Cat remarked.
      'Don't be impertinent,' said the King, 'and don't look at me like that!' He got behind Alice as he spoke.
      'A cat may look at a king,' said Alice. 'I've read that in some book, but I don't remember where.'
      'Well, it must be removed,' said the King very decidedly, and he called the Queen, who was passing at the moment, 'My dear! I wish you would have this cat removed!'
      The Queen had only one way of settling all difficulties, great or small. 'Off with his head!' she said, without even looking round.
      'I'll fetch the executioner myself,' said the King eagerly, and he hurried off.

      Delete
    34. Michael,

      I've had a thought. Surely even you could no be so obtuse as to miss the fact that I was taking the p..s when I made that remark about not being a snob because I talk to you.? This renders your cats looking at kings references rather pointless. Then again, reflecting on our earlier conversations in your shop, I can believe that you truly thought I was being serious. Or more accurately, you hoped that I was a snob in order to satisfy your preconceived prejudices. But then perhaps you're just trying to have a bit of fun. In this albeit unlikely event I apologise for not joining in.

      Delete
    35. Ah John, I can see now that this was a mistake on my part and that references to your social and intellectual superiority were unnecessary, inasmuch as it is axiomatic to our dialogue.

      Please forgive me here, but as a shop assistant I speak to a great many people, so I don’t actually remember the conservations to which you elude, however I am sure to everyone who has met me, my origins as a gutter snipe are apparent.

      Delete
  25. RiverOak state in their letter that they offered the full asking price,
    As Ann Gloag had not offered the land for sale, there was no asking price.
    Fact.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. diane,

      How do you know that there was never and asking price. Presumbly you were not at the meetings and have seen none of the papers?

      Delete
    2. Diane I have asked many times for anybody who can show me an estate agent acting on behalf of Ann Gloag and a asking price and looked on the net for this so called asking price, as yet neither has come up with any evidence.

      Delete
    3. Purple Om , I think the timing is a factor, At the time that RiverOak started pressing her to sell, she had not had the opportunity of putting it on the market, and she has never done so.

      Delete
    4. So Diane you think it has never been on the market and a MP has made up a price?

      Delete
    5. The arguments about an asking price are flawed. Ann Gloag may well have indicated a price, she doesn't need an estate agent to do it for her. At the time, after the closure was announced, offers were being made for Manston and these were being turned down. Perhaps at some point £7.5M was indicated, but the only people who will know for sure are those directly involved. Anything else is pure speculation.

      Yes John, your 11:04 of yesterday is a phrase that is familiar to me.

      Delete
    6. In RiverOak's letter above, they state that they approached Ann Gloag in the third week of April before the airport was closed.

      This is the same MP who told us that RiverOak had a background in airport management.

      Delete
    7. Quite right Diane, they did, but Ann Gloag had already announced the closure, and the final offer, £7.5m, was mad on the day the airport closed.

      Delete
    8. SEMBOB only one side has said the airport was for sale and at what price, I have not read any statement from AG that she was selling. Can you point to one please somewhere, anywhere!!

      Delete
    9. This is an extract from the letter above Barry. Read it for yourself. I doubt you will see anything from Ann Gloag as she seems to hold her cards close to her chest, but I think it is safe to assume that Riveroak thought she was selling.

      "Our Dealings with Ann Gloag

      We first expressed an interest in Manston in the third week of April when the closure
      consultation was underway but before the airport actually closed. Mrs. Gloag’s team
      immediately gave us full financial disclosure. On 29 April we visited Manston and on 2 May we
      met Mrs. Gloag at her Perthshire home.


      1

      During this time our team carried out a full analysis of Manston’s operating performance and
      produced a turnaround plan which showed the airport moving from annual trading losses of over
      £3 million to break even in approximately sixteen months. We budgeted for those losses; we
      added a significant contingency in case the turnaround took longer and we allowed for essential
      capital expenditure. We also budgeted for the purchase price and essential legal costs.

      We made three offers to Mrs. Gloag, culminating on 15 May with an offer to pay the full asking
      price. All three offers were rejected for reasons which have never been made clear to us. We
      have had no contact with Mrs. Gloag or her team since 15 May."

      Reference is made to the full asking price. Therefore she was considering selling. QED.

      Delete
    10. Barry, an extract from the letter above. From this we can assume that Ann Gloag was considering selling. An asking price implies that a sale was a possibility.

      Our Dealings with Ann Gloag

      We first expressed an interest in Manston in the third week of April when the closure
      consultation was underway but before the airport actually closed. Mrs. Gloag’s team
      immediately gave us full financial disclosure. On 29 April we visited Manston and on 2 May we
      met Mrs. Gloag at her Perthshire home.


      1

      During this time our team carried out a full analysis of Manston’s operating performance and
      produced a turnaround plan which showed the airport moving from annual trading losses of over
      £3 million to break even in approximately sixteen months. We budgeted for those losses; we
      added a significant contingency in case the turnaround took longer and we allowed for essential
      capital expenditure. We also budgeted for the purchase price and essential legal costs.

      We made three offers to Mrs. Gloag, culminating on 15 May with an offer to pay the full asking
      price. All three offers were rejected for reasons which have never been made clear to us. We
      have had no contact with Mrs. Gloag or her team since 15 May.

      Delete
    11. exactly the point I was making there has been no comment from Ann Gloag's team that the events described ever took place and certainly nothing that says it was for sale. the absence of a denial or confirmation doesn't prove those events took place. What I was looking for was something corroborating Riveroaks statement.
      1. where was it advertised for sale
      2. when was it advertised
      3. what was the sale's price

      If I where a business person sitting on, I believe, 700 acres, of brownfield I doubt I would put it for sale at knockdown £7.5M especially, as I believe, £23M of debt transferred from Prestwick. That would not make any sort of business sense at all

      Delete
    12. If somebody knocks on my door and says "Can I buy your house?" does that mean I have to tell all and sundry about the offer. In this scenario I have never put my house up for sale ergo you won't find an advertisement. I may well put a price which I believe the potential buyer cannot afford, but what do I do when they make an offer at that price.

      You are clutching at straws BJ. I refer you to http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/stagecoach-tycoon-ann-gloag-comes-3538717 which refers to a statement by Skyport.

      Beyond this I am not going to discuss, and I quote a former director of a company I once worked for "The ins and outs of a maggots fundamental orifice". He was rather more succinct using only one word for the last two in that statement

      Delete
    13. So as I understand it Manston wasn't actually advertised for sale using your comments above but like most businesses if the right offer (credible) came along she would have sold.
      when their knock down "offer" was rejected they start using the press, angry locals and Thanet Council to get what they couldn't get at the price they wanted to pay.
      As I said before if I were an astute business man with a 700 acre brownfield site and £23M of debt I would be somewhat daft to sell it to a company that wanted to pay a derisory £7.5M.
      I always thought it was important to debate and prove your points I didn't think good debaters baled out when their arguments aren't as good as the other persons, I am however getting used to that on this blog

      Delete
    14. To be honest BJ I think you put words into my mouth then asked my to prove them, which I have tried to do, but not to your satisfaction. Therefore it was a sterile debate. Why not do what I did and try and find the answers to your questions yourself, not put words into my mouth and then challenge them. I believe Google is a useful tool. And the company that owns Manston is known as Manston Skyport ltd. Scottish newspapers are also a good place to look to find all sorts of news items about the owners of Stagecoach and Manston.

      Please note, I can only speculate on what I read in the press, follow up what others say here, and to check the veracity of their statements.

      Please also read again my comment at 2:45 pm. which I copy here to save you having to look.


      Still Even More Bemused Of Birchington July 27, 2014 2:45 pm

      The arguments about an asking price are flawed. Ann Gloag may well have indicated a price, she doesn't need an estate agent to do it for her. At the time, after the closure was announced, offers were being made for Manston and these were being turned down. Perhaps at some point £7.5M was indicated, but the only people who will know for sure are those directly involved. Anything else is pure speculation.

      Delete
    15. I don't think it a sterile debate but more akin to getting those who believe to re check the facts that are actually there for all to see.
      Those that put the other point of view like diane seem to treated akin to pariahs for daring to question. Me I have never ever said whether I am for or against I just question whether TDC (who spend my council tax) are able to see through the propaganda.
      Michael says he is for Manston but not a Cargo Hub, the blog post at the sidebar Herne Bay matters says much of what Michael says. and I suppose its all about interpretation of what little is known I just refuse to accept that different groups have the same viewpoint as they all have their own agendas.

      Delete
  26. Michael your 14:01 about offensive comments. I'm sorry my reply is down here but I can't find it up there.

    Thank you for kind offer. But there is no need. The Purple Om did not offend me. In my experience he lacks the power and wit to ever offend me. Oh dear, what have I said, now he's gonna try.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why cannot we discuss these important subjects without you trying to goad other people?
      What are you trying to achieve?

      Delete
  27. diane, ypur16:37

    I read last month it in a newspaper story about her. No, I cannot be fagged to find it now. I will resort to your technique and require you prove that it never appeared.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. diane,

      Your 17:00.

      I dunno. I suggest you go back and read it again.

      In matter, manner and mood your comments are so similar to those of Purple Om that a less charitable person could be forgiven for concluding that you closely connected or even one and the same. Surely not.

      Delete
    2. John can you point to any article, announced officially, from Ann Gloag's camp where she has indicated that Manston was put up for sale at any price. All I can find is Riveroak attributed statements that she refused to accept.

      Anyone, Michael included, was there such an announcement?

      Delete
    3. BJ. Diane. Ann Gloag gave assurances that she would invest long term in the airport, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ann_Gloag, but that of course is in Wikipedia, which can be wrong, but I prefer to trust it to any statement from Ann Gloag which as far as I can tell have only ever been announced at second or third hand, never from the horses mouth.

      My double entry above at 5:38 and 5:42 was inadvertent due to gremlins in the system, but I have decided to let it stand. Gremlins escape from airfields when they close.

      Delete
    4. This might help with regard to selling Manston.

      http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/stagecoach-tycoon-ann-gloag-comes-3538717

      AN airport owned by Stagecoach tycoon Ann Gloag is set to close tomorrow – with the loss
      of 150 jobs.

      The billionaire bought Manston airport in Kent from a New Zealand firm for £1 last October.

      It is losing £10,000 a day but campaigners are angry that what they call a viable bid to buy Manston has been rejected by shareholders.

      Ian McCoulough, of the Unite union, said: “We believe Manston should continue as a viable airport. It is vital to the local economy in terms of employment and economic growth in Kent.”

      Gloag’s operating firm Manston Skyport said they had been willing to consider credible offers.

      They added: “We have engaged with a range of interested parties over the last couple of months which, unfortunately, have not come to fruition.”


      Delete
    5. ah I think that article albeit not ann gloag does at least answer one question. They were looking at "credible" offers.
      2 thoughts

      1. "credible" offers probaly meant give us £200M and we might sell
      2. It reminds me of astra zeneca and their sales technique. I believe the politest statement was a "hostile takeover" this time they have met a more astute business owner.

      Delete
    6. Barry she would have been a mug to sell it for only £200 million, as she stands to make £550 million profit out of this deal.
      I still think the main debate is if the courts will allow TDC to use their powers of a CPO then will riveroak pay the real price. If that happens Ramsgate will be doomed forever. Property prices will plummet any investors will head for the hills Ramsgates sea front will be come even more run down no tourists will ever come back. Has anybody worked out how many planes it will take to keep Manston afloat 100s a day and many at night is this what we really want for Ramsgate?

      Delete
    7. Michael, I repeat that John Holyer has a second time accused me of being an imposter on this site.
      This is a horrible allegation and completely untrue. Would you please deal with it.
      I only joined your blog very recently, and this sort of initial approach is not much of a welcome.
      He is trying to intimidate me by stating that I am really one of the other posters on here

      Delete
    8. Ah Diane, I think that you have over estimated my abilities on this one, however I would ask you once again to look at the commenting guidelines at the bottom of the post and then tell me what it is that you want me to do.

      Delete
    9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
    10. Diane, as you say, you are new to this blog. To confirm John Holyer's remarks, Purple Om has indeed made the comments about cancer and heart attacks, and while not showing concern for my health, Purple Om has on occasion been less than complimentary to my remarks.

      I too believe that Purple Om is two different people using the same computer, (I can't envisage how else two people can have the same screen name), in that some of his comments are well thought out, and others verging on the crude with the use of thinly disguised expletives and bad health wishes, especially to John. So while he may be wrong about you, you can perhaps understand his remarks.

      Delete
    11. Perp, your 9:39 am,

      You lie.

      # You do not have access to my FB page. I only permit access to those that I know in real life. I would certainly never permit access to a nameless creep such as you and your diane; and

      #your lying accusations about my being "aggressive and nasty to women" is yet another example of how you judge others by your own odious standards.

      Bearing in mind that I use my real name I say that your remark has caused me distress and has damaged my reputation in the others. I say that you are guilty of libel. You have gone too far this time. I am taking advice.

      Your diane claims to have a degree in law. Perhaps the two of you should get your heads together and discuss where you go from here.

      You should know that your libellous remark can never be deleted either from the web or my records.
      It is out there forever. And you can be traced.



      Delete
    12. John I have removed the comment, although I am surprised that responded to it instead of complying with blog guidelines and asking me to remove it.

      In terms of it remaining on the internet, this is not entirely true as the search engines will cache the initial page when it is published and then make new caches of amended pages as the comments appear, so that while the in initial page will remain cached and the final modified page will remain cached the interim pages will be permanently obliterated.

      Delete
    13. Interesting to note that Purple Om has probably had more comments removed by the blog administrator than anybody else in recent times. Diane has been removing some of her own and has also had one removed by the administrator. I suspect that the degree in law is only recent, though I am prepared to be corrected.

      I enjoy a knock about here but when it comes to remarks which are derogatory or disparaging, then I try and draw the line, not always successfully. As Barry says, below, "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool rather than opening your mouth and proving it beyond all doubt".

      Delete
    14. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    15. Because Peter I'm not a troll. I join in with the debate and dont pick holes and insult people without them doing it first even then I let many go before I say anything back. that's why

      Delete
    16. thanks SEMBOB I presume that was the original statement you posted about foolishness, may father said it much more succinctly

      Delete
  28. Why don't people argue the debate and stop making disparaging remarks about the person making the remarks. This seems to be a problem on all media not just this blog.
    If you cannot argue your points it is ridiculous to then ridicule the person it is far better to fade away gracefully. Something I was once told, which is good advice "it is better for people to believe you are stupid than to open your mouth and prove it"

    ReplyDelete
  29. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Michael,

    I'm unable to find your original comment among the forest so I repeat it here;

    "John I have removed the comment, although I am surprised that responded to it instead of complying with blog guidelines and asking me to remove it.

    In terms of it remaining on the internet, this is not entirely true as the search engines will cache the initial page when it is published and then make new caches of amended pages as the comments appear, so that while the in initial page will remain cached and the final modified page will remain cached the interim pages will be permanently obliterated.”


    Thank you for deleting that odious comment from the Purple Om.

    I responded to it because it pleased me to do so, which should not surprise you.

    I have already sent you an email in which among things I asked you to remove the Purple Om's comment.

    I am not in the mood to enter a discussion about what can or cannot be deleted from the Internet suffice to say that I disagree with you.

    I look forward to a reply to my email soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John I removed Purple Om’s comment before you emailed me, have responded also to your email:

      The key here though is the blog guidelines: “If you feel that someone has left a comment that is offensive and directed at you personally please email me (link on the sidebar) asking to have it removed, you will need to tell which post and the date and timestamp of the offending comment. Please do not reply to the offending comment as I will assume you continuing the dialogue as meaning that you want the comments left there.”

      On the subject of the deleted comment and Purple Om, I quote from your email “ delete the comment; and takes action to curb him. I suspect that you know him.” What is the action that you would like me take? As without first knowing what you wish me to do it is difficult for me to decide whether or not to do it.

      With the ITC, I of course defer to your superior intellect, I still find it a difficult subject to understand.

      Delete
    2. Michael,

      Thank you. I have replied to your email and I repeat here that you have no need to remove any comment addressed to me unless I specifically ask you to do so. You can stop fussing about it.

      However, I would appreciate it if you would stop your wriggling. You know full well what I action you should take bearing in mind that you know his identity.

      I will ignore the snide in your final sentence.

      Delete
    3. John the problem is that you haven’t told me what it is you want me to about Purple Om either in our email exchange, which I am happy to publish here if you like, or in the comments here.

      You asked me in by email to “# delete the comment; and takes action to curb him.” As I had already deleted the comment when you asked me, then I would need you tell what action you would like me to take, before I would know what action you want me to take.

      I can publish the whole email exchange here if it helps you to recall the dialogue.

      Where you are having difficulty finding comments again on this post it may be helpful to you if you press Ctrl and F at the same time and put what you want to find in the box that appears.

      Delete
    4. Michael,

      I did not know about Ctrl + F. Thank you that was helpful. You see you were wrong again, I do not know everything.

      Thank you for your helpful offer to publish the whole exchange. There is no need for you to do so as I have it all recorded.

      I will email you about the rest once I have recovered the energy to do so.

      And now I must stop commenting on your blog for the next few days (stop sobbing) as I have more fun things to do. Among other things I am now the eager owner of the full Photoshop and Lightroom. I have much to learn about them.

      Delete
    5. Before I go, look out for me on TV in the Commonwealth Games. I am representing Rockall in the free fall basket weaving competition. Yay, sweet rockall !

      Delete
  31. Michael I dont know why you removed my comment as I did not mention any names he must be feeling guilty I am not worried about you removing my comment and again sorry you had to be involved
    SEMBOB please could you show me my comment about cancer if not remove your comment as its lies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same reason you have deleted some of your own comment OM

      Delete
  32. Back to the debate. Ann Gloag paid £1.00 for Manston. She is entitled to what she paid in the event of a successful CPO. Discuss.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you will find that the CPO guidelines state that she will be compensated for the lands value at the time of a CPO + any development that would have taken place if a CPO was not sort. As I say she will rip TDC/RiverOak apart in court. The worry is that riveroak will not have enough money at the end of the trial to pay back TDC and the court may demand that the bill is paid to Ann Gloag this will result in TDC having to go to a bank and borrow the money or it will have to sell a lot of assets to find that sort of money so lets hope RiverOak are well insured and TDC have done their homework.

      Delete
    2. Very clever Purple Om. I expect you have deleted your comments before challenging me to show you where they are. There is no doubt in my mind that you made those comments, and you also asked John Holyer to look after his hart (sic).

      Purple Om, are you sure you are the only person with access to your account?

      Do you believe it is right for someone to buy a piece of land for £1.00, throw 150 people out of work and then make a vast profit from it? CPO compensation, like insurance, can only restore you to where you were before the event, it cannot make you better off.

      Delete
    3. You are mistaken SEMBOB If you have been given a RR car for a pound and got it insured for the correct amount then if the car is stolen you will be paid out in full value of the car worth not the pound you paid
      At the time of a CPO a land valuer will assess the lands worth that will be £300,000,000 this is roughly £400,000 an acer but there will be higher plots than that and lower than that. At £400.000 an acer is very cheap and I expect plots over looking Pegwell bay to be 2-3 times that

      Delete
    4. I dont think you believe that she paid a £1 for it, as for the people that worked there I am sorry that people lost their jobs but if the amount of tax payers money had been given straight to them without having to keep manston open then Ramsgate would not have had to deal with the blight of being on a flightpath and put up with the threat of night flights and expansion as it is again having to deal with uncertainty this ruins Ramsgates chances of becoming the town it should be. So no wonder some people of Ramsgate are anti-Manston you would be if you lived here. I'm hanging on to the hope that my thoughts are right and TDC will be thrown out of court or the price will be to high. Should 150 jobs keep a town with 40,000 people in it down? I dont think so. If ramsgate gets a chance to attract tourists once more the benefit will be far out weigh any that manston could ever bring and the money would go straight into the pockets of Thanets people

      Delete
    5. Actually SEMBOB you have used the word sic in the wrong context twice now, let me help sic is a word that young people use to describe something that's good not as you were using it as something thats sick. However you have misconstrued what I have said I only ever said that John should not be so full of poison when he commented it was not good for his heart and never mentioned anything to do with cancer. If I were to remove my comment about cancer I would have said. Now if you dont mind please remove your false statement.

      Delete
    6. Om I think in this context it may have been short for the latin word secundum or the latin phrase sic erat scriptum, in both cases it basically means "same as"

      Delete
    7. Purple OM, your

      The Latin adverb sic ("thus"; in full: sic erat scriptum, "thus was it written") inserted immediately after a quoted word or passage, indicates that the quoted matter has been transcribed exactly as found in the source text, complete with any erroneous or archaic spelling, surprising assertion, faulty reasoning, or other matter that might otherwise be taken as an error of transcription.

      The notation's usual purpose is to inform the reader that any errors or apparent errors in quoted material do not arise from errors in the course of the transcription, but are intentionally reproduced, exactly as they appear in the source text. It is generally placed inside square brackets, to signal that it is not part of the quoted matter; and is traditionally printed in italics, as is customary with foreign words.

      Sic may also be used derisively, to call attention to the original writer's spelling mistakes or erroneous logic

      [Sorry could not resist this and I was worried that SEMOB or Michael might have missed it].

      Delete
    8. I am sure John will agree with me that this is the most pertinent quotation, containing sic and says it all really:
      Caesar adsum jam forte
      Brutus adarat
      Caesar sic in omnibus
      Brutus sic in hat.

      Delete
    9. Michael [your 3:17pm] This is my favourite in the Cod Latin and always make me chuckle. And now it really is must be back to Photoshop.

      Delete
    10. Sic transit Gloria mundi. So much for a classical education. Never had one, but learnt to keep a dictionary alongside me to help with things I didn't know.

      John, Purple Om insists that I am wrong to say that he hoped you get cancer. I am sure I read it but can't find it. Am I right?

      Delete
    11. Thank You Michael, John. Just goes to show that Purple Om doesn't know everything.

      John, re Purple Om's request to remove my alleged false statement about cancer, I am sure he said it but only you will know for sure?

      Delete
    12. Gremlins again. Problem in uploading comments. The first one disappears so I write another one, then both appear together.

      Delete
    13. Purple Om. John Holyer's comment at 1:56 pm on 27th July refers.

      Delete
    14. SEMBOB you need to clear the cache using the tools button on your browser, you have got it bunged up with old pages.

      you don't need a dictionary, with Canis Latinicus, or to put it into Google translate, just say it out loud.

      Delete
    15. SEMOB,

      Purple Om said it. It was something along the lines that if I supported the airport and its pollution than he hoped I got cancer from it. He has also twisted the truth about his heart attack calumny. But let it go. The man is a bumptious twit. Thank you for your support.

      Delete
    16. When you Manston supporters have finished thinking your somebody your not, How about debating the matter in hand as you think that pollution wont affect you please look it up and see how far it travels

      Delete
  33. Purple Om, Your comment of 11:58 am on 28 July.

    You have said, "John your comments to a woman about the UKIP office when it was damaged what you said to the lady was not kind at all I stand by my first comment!!!!!!!"

    Once again you lie. You clown, the UKIP office was vandalised by those suspected of having a political motive. The comment I made was this, “This demonstrates once again that it's always those who preach 'diversity and equality' loudest who are the most vindictive and intolerant bigots imaginable.”

    It is clear that my comment was general and not addressed to anyone in particular, male or female.

    Perp, you clown, the only place you should stand is in the corner.

    Michael, I cannot find the Perp's comment in the jungle so I have repeated it in my reply. Please do not delete it. Though I suspect he may have already deleted it of his own volition. The Perp will tell me if I am wrong.

    ReplyDelete
  34. http://www.kentonline.co.uk/thanet/news/mp-tells-council-to-act-20922/

    Looks like Riveroak and our NT MP is putting pressure on TDC to make a quick decision. I believe thats what a few people are thinking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A difficult decision for TDC. Either accept Riveroak and see Manston thrive, bringing much needed jobs to the area, or turn it down and see Thanet disappear into the slough of despond. An opportunity doesn't come this way very often. TDC must get its act together.

      (Note to Purple Om. I don't mean Slough, Berkshire. Look up John Bunyan).

      Delete
    2. or get railroaded by an american company whose agenda may not be what they are publicly saying. Glad its not my decision although as a tax payer I would like a choice

      Delete
    3. Looks like Thanet was railroaded by Ann Gloag. She said one thing and did another. Who can we trust?

      Delete
    4. looks like we have common distrust SEMBOB

      Delete
    5. Note to SEMBOB that report looks good :)

      Delete
  35. press release from TDC
    "The report identifies that no business plan with a credible investment plan of less
    than 20 years is likely to provide the commitment necessary to rebuild confidence
    From an investor’s standpoint, the payback period might be as long as 50 years.
    The level of investment would have to be significant (£100m’s) and there are never
    any guarantees of success. Moreover, this will require full Council and national
    political support and is a huge undertaking. However, it should be emphasised that
    the consultants are clear that this is the only approach that has any chance of
    securing the future of the site as an operational airport."
    the full press release is here http://thanet.gov.uk/the-thanet-magazine/press-releases/2014/july/viability-report-manston-airport/
    the cabinet papers are linked

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've just read the report, and quite frankly I find it most alarming. It seems that a future for Manston as an airport depends on its becoming a "London Airport". I really don't want Ramsgate to resemble Hatton Cross.

      Delete
    2. James this seems to be the old Manston tangle of the site overheads and transport costs to the airport being so large that the window between profitability and going over environmental constraints and achievable planning consents seems either very small or non existent depending on how you do the sums.

      Because of the close proximity of Ramsgate to the end of the runway, then the balance between acceptable noise pollution constraints and profitability is very narrow and this is the case even regardless of local opinion because of national and international regulations.

      Because of the high levels of particulate air pollution here that are the result of the prevailing winds blowing across most of southern England, and the proximity of the airport to Margate and Broadstairs upwind of the airport, then once again there is a narrow margin.

      Because of the aquifer there is also a limited amount of concreting over for hard standing before replenishment becomes an issue, roofs and gardens can be drained into the ground there, any hard standing that motor vehicles go is another matter.

      I am not saying it’s unachievable because this needs expert investigation, what I am saying is that proper investigation need to occur before large amounts of money are spent.

      I am highly suspicious of any airport proposals that don’t mention these issues tht are peculiar to Manston.

      Delete
  36. Michael,

    I note your suggestion that I should put my full name on your blog. In fact, it was never my intention to exclude my last name,
    but I registered via my Google account and only my first name came up on the blog. In hindsight, I am delighted, as it has this blog does not feel like a safe environment.

    I found it very odd that as soon as I entered into the spirit of posting that one person in particular, John Holyer, continued to hound me as if he was some sort of stalker, with accusations that I was actually an imposter, and really some-one else, which seems insane to me.
    He also stated that I was an ignorant person, who knew nothing of value on any subject!

    I could hardly describe this as a welcome to a new poster, which is unfortunate, as this blog could do with some fresh blood, apart from all he old duffers on here.

    I see another one of your posters comments on the fact that I deleted a couple of posts, and on this basis, makes rude comments about my legal qualifications, as if posting on blogs is a vital part of a Law Degree. The reason I did so, was that I had made some typos and as there is no edit feature, I thought it would be clearer for you all.

    When people cast out these stupid comments, they have no idea to whom they are speaking. As a matter of fact, I have had to give up my career, as I am nursing my husband who is dying of cancer. No wonder, I may make the odd typo. I thought it may be a helpful distraction to join in debates on local issues on a blog run by a local owner of a book-shop. What could go wrong!

    This is my last post here, as I will not be bothering with your blog anymore. Your current loyal posters are much happier playing in their sand-pit on their own, so I will leave them to it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Its a shame Diane you feel that way. My view is that 3 trolls have killed Thanets blogs and Ramsgate blogs have been a real target. Its a pity that there is no way to remove them and I'm sure he will feel no shame in the way he has made you feel.

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    3. Om I really did try with Diane on this one, the simple answer here is to abide by the blog guidelines and if someone antagonises you then not to reply to them but to contact me explaining the problem and what they want me to do about it.

      I think with the Manston issue this is the only reasonably high profile place where people on both sides of the argument can comment and discus aspects of it with each other, so things are bound to get a little heated.

      As I have said before the problems are directly related to the page counter on the sidebar.

      Delete
    4. Michael its not your fault trolls are not only on your blog they are on almost every site and blog all over the world. It must get at you a little. I have been reading your blog for 2 years and often seen snide and nasty comments so its not just Manston but if you have ever been on SMA fb they can be very nasty indeed. It seems a shame that the thing trolls love best maybe ruined by their own actions, one day there will only be 3 people left trolling each other until the last one is all on his own.

      Delete
    5. Actually BigNewsMargate also allows both side of the Manston argument and is just as high profile as this blog.

      Delete
    6. Anon you are quite right and I apologise, both to you and to Tony, it’s the school holidays and I guess with bookshop, children, blog and sketching I am losing the plot a bit.

      Delete
    7. It seems to me that anybody who disagrees with Purple Om is a troll. I believe in robust argument and if I see a statement issued that I know to be wrong then I will challenge it. If that makes me a troll then so be it. If I read a letter in the press and I disagree then I have the right to respond, and I have had several letters published. But never has a writer to the press been called a troll. The only difference here is that the publication is instant. If anything it is Purple Om whom is the troll on this blog.

      Delete
    8. SEMBOB then respond with facts, not calling people a idiot or pointing out where they have made a mistake in spelling or where a full stop should be. If you cant win an argument without using your childish tactics then its best you don't bother at all

      Delete
    9. SEMBOB Give it a rest now as I wont be playing your game any more

      Delete
    10. Dear Purple Om,

      I have never called you an idiot.

      You have queried if my parents taught me how to count.

      You have wished death from cancer on another alleged troll.

      I respond with facts, yet if they are not to your liking you throw the toys out of the pram.

      Yours emphatically

      SEMBOB.

      Delete
    11. Finished have we? SEMBOB

      Delete
    12. my twopeennorth is simply do not engage in name calling, dont call people trolls and please stop pushing peoples buttons. There are two sides (and sometimes more) to a discussion and both sides should at least find some common ground to acknowledge.
      Ann Gloag said (when she acquired the airport) she wanted to grow the business. She was economical with the truth. Riveroak seems on the face of it to be trying to railroad TDC for reasons best known to themselves and they are encouraging local partisan support to put pressure on the council.
      Labour have said they will not give in to their stated response to night flights.

      Best thing I have heard tonight is the encouragement that could be given to the development of the area for jobs not housing but then we do not have a current Local Plan

      Delete
    13. Sounds like typical Labour, all things to all people. If they continue to oppose night flights then they are anti Manston. Without the ability to operate 24/7 Manston is nothing. Jobs in Thanet is the only way forward for the prosperity of Thanet as a whole.

      Delete
    14. where is the common ground? the quote about jobs maybe.

      SEMBOB currently we dont have an airport in fact it hasn't made any money for 20 years before anyone even heard of Ann Gloag. my advice would be for people to stop clutching at straws. the proverb is "out of the frying pan into the fire"

      and as a matter of interest where was the local support for the 4000 jobs lost when Pfizer closed? I do not remember a FB campaigning group.

      Delete
    15. So what your saying SEMBOB is without Manston Thanet will have no prosperity? I disagree I think Manston and other projects (the port) have held back Ramsgate. In Margate, it has been the councils neglect to stop the large buildings becoming HMOs. Broadstairs has not had as many problems as Ramsgate or Margate but their decline has affected Broadstairs. What TDC's plan should be is to focus on tourism tourism tourism. As the 3 towns are all linked and all have wonderful Georgian Victorian and Edwardian architecture and attractions that with a lot of TLC and some modern attractions + the great beaches Thanet could really prosper beyond all expectations. I have said this before and a few people have said this will not give young people a good wage but if you think about it any businesses that are global have already been taken by the multinationals who would force any new businesses out. This is where Thanets young could stand a chance to be well paid. A few examples if we had the tourism they could start up fishing trips, zorbing, rock climbing,sea foraging for food cooked on the beach, tours, selling ice creams on the beach,Cab driver, these are just a few but all of them can be done being self employed without huge start up costs. The money that tourism brings can be fantastic and could easily out perform an airport the size of Heathrow in finance if you need proof then look up Dorset's revenue from tourism.

      Delete
    16. Great idea Purple Om, getting rid of the airport and port (shame that we still have those pesky railway stations though!). The unemployed airline pilots can always get a job as an icecream man or start foraging for food if their families get hungry.

      Delete
    17. Clive Hart lost his leadership thanks to pressure from the pro-Manston group. If Labour don't support the cpo then they're ALL finished in Thanet. Iris knows that, and so does Will.

      Delete
    18. 8.10 The airline pilots what do they earn? £40,000 and on P.A.Y.E now selling ice creams on the beach £80,000 with being self employed.
      What did Clive Hart do to offend the mighty SMA group?
      Is that the same mighty SMA group that has never managed to get more than 300 to any of its marches and the last march only 60 people when 144 lost their jobs and that was before the FC report.

      Delete
    19. I left Thanet in 1959 Purple Om, when it was a highly attractive holiday destination, with Dreamland going full pelt, at least 3 or four cinemas within a short walk of each other. The reason I left was to gain an apprenticeship. Most of my peers did the same.
      That was because I didn't want a job in a hotel, or taking photographs on the pier or seafront. (Actually one of my school mates did that and ended up working for the local paper, but he was an exception).
      There are already boats hiring fishing trips in Ramsgate, I don't know how many boats the demand will support, not many. What you are suggesting is largely seasonal work, and what most people want is full time well paid work. I certainly wouldn't relish selling ice cream or running beach barbecues in mid winter. What Thanet needs is for existing large manufacturers to expand locally, but that is fraught with difficulty. I have been made redundant four times in Thanet, three times from relatively large companies which ceased trading, and one very small one which employed three people. The three larger companies were multinational traders though British in origin, and wages varied across all four, but only one paid better than the average for the area. So until wages come into line with the national average then Thanet will not thrive.

      We have two port facilities, both of which are problematical. We have Manston which many are trying to get opened again, and Ramsgate which many are trying to prevent from running a legal, though questionable, cargo operation.

      I could go on but tempers fugit.

      Delete
    20. Underground train driver £40,000. Lets build an underground railway in Thanet. Not.

      Delete
    21. How many Ice cream salesmen can Thanet support, all earning £80,000 a year? A new van costs circa £60,000, plus insurance etc. Airline pilot any time.

      Delete
    22. Look you can pick holes as much as you want but the fact of the matter is that if Thanet attracted 1,000,000 tourists a year and they spent £500 over a week each that would be £500,000,000 into the local economy. Well enough for you young and old people to take advantage of and think of how they can get a share, how many people do you know that got rich working for somebody else?

      Delete
    23. Is it not better to have a job than no job at all?

      Delete
    24. Nearly 20,000 visitors a week on average. Nothing wrong with your sums Purple Om. Hotel accommodation alone would take over £500 in most hotels for a week at £85 a night. B&B maybe a bit less. That's profit to the hoteliers. Then off to Canterbury for a day. All day on the beach eating ice cream and cooked food from the friendly food scavenger stall. The money spent would go into very few pockets.

      Thanet needs industry which can put money into the pockets of the local population to spend locally.

      Delete

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