Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Not another Manston update, some old Thanet pictures and bank holiday Maidstone Monday.

Starting with the old Thanet pictures, today I wandered down to the local section in my bookshop and copied some from the secondhand local books on the shelf, so anything you recognise lads and lasses.

The two Thanet aircraft pictures bring us on to the Manston update.

I think my main problem here is that it is difficult to understand some of the issues and the group of people who are for aviation use at the Manston Airport site are good at arguing with the group of people who are against it and vice versa. But no one seems to very good at explaining possible outcomes if the DCO and associated CPO do go though and we get a huge airfreight hub built at Manston.

They say we live in a compensation culture, but the freight hub compensation culture is something that I really don’t understand at all.

At the moment there seems to be a door knocking exercise going on in Thanet asking people there for various personal and property details, I think this is about assessing the compensation either if RiverOak/RSP want to take away your property by CPO or if the freight hub will make some sort of difference to your quality of life.

Here is the link to the advice about this on the DFT website https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/projects/south-east/manston-airport/?ipcsection=advice&ipcadvice=9d286e4fec I think what they are saying is that if you live in Thanet and a member of the Save Manston Airport Association turns up on your doorstep with a leaflet, they may represent the people who will eventually compensate you for adverse affects caused by the freight hub.

What is difficult to find out at the moment is if you say live in an old building in Ramsgate that would be expensive to insulate against aircraft noise, would you get enough compensation? Added to this is the issue of the listed building and the conservation area and what you would be allowed to do.

The other aspect of the airfreight hub is best summed up as don’t by a diesel car, and this is because the save the planet thinking has changed since Manston Airport closed.

I am assuming that everyone here has heard of climate change, the thinking here is that using too much of the fossil fuels will eventually damage planet earth to the point it becomes very difficult to human beings to survive on it. The temperature will rise making holidays here in Thanet more desirable in fifty years time, after this in say three hundred years time comes the hangover after the big party.

The diesel car and jet aeroplane issue is also about burning fossil fuel but not about climate change. In the simplest terms the government is saying that if you live next to a busy road junction you are much more likely to die younger, probably from lung cancer because of breathing in the little particles given off by burning diesel fuel.

One such area in Thanet is St Lawrence Roundabout which is now designated an air quality management area, there is lots of bumph online but I think it boils down to if you live near it you are 36% more likely to die of lung cancer than if you don’t. it is always comforting to know that any reduction in your life expectancy is now being properly managed by the council.

So just for a mo considering that about half the cars using it are likely to be diesels and taking into account how much a diesel car does in terms of mpg, how long do you reckon it would take for a gallon of diesel to be burnt there?

Perhaps a couple of gallons a day, don’t know really so I suppose it would take about 100 days to burn a tonne of diesel at this junction, or perhaps 4 tonnes a year. This sounds reasonable to me give or take a few 100%, in this context it doesn’t really matter if it is 1 or 100 per year. What does matter is that the scientists have told the government that it will kill people off sufficiently to cause a scandal and so they are looking at ways to phase out diesel cars.

The other main sources of the deadly particles are jet engine fuel and the bunker oil used in ships, both of these are worse than diesel cars in terms of the amount of particles given of for the weight of fuel burnt, although filtering them out is easier with ships.

Now the proposed freight hub at Manston involves an minimum of 10,000 ground movements per year, landing or takeoff and a freight cargo plane 747 type burns I tonne of jet fuel per ground movement. So the freight hub would have to burn 10,000 tonnes of fuel at Manston per year to qualify for a DCO.

Anyway I have put this to various people supporting the airport on Facebook, examples being https://www.facebook.com/groups/EastKentCivilSociety/permalink/1435680199835652/ and more recently https://www.facebook.com/groups/EastKentCivilSociety/permalink/1444298988973773/ mainly because a mixture of the available information and the obvious conclusions lead me to think I must have made some sort of mistake.

Anyway no answers so far so please regardless of your position on Manston, if you have any ideas on this one let me know.  

Two more shops have closed in Ramsgate, this time due to relocation within the town, but even so it doesn’t help the situation which I highlighted recently, see http://thanetonline.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/empty-shops-right-in-middle-to-ramsgate.html

Maidstone however was about as busy as Ramsgate used to be in the 1970s, so is this partly because KCC is West Kent focused?

Finally here is the last batch of books to go on the shelves of the bookshop in Ramsgate http://michaelsbookshop.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/prison-breaks-in-bookshop.html


  1. Hi Michael,
    No one from Save Manston is knocking on anyones doors asking for information re property and personal details. As you rightly point out and from the link supplied this is being carried out by an independent firm commissioned by RiverOak Strategic Partners and to the requirements of the application for the DCO. I think this maybe getting mixed up with the leaflet being distributed to households through Thanet and the villages by SMAa updating people on the progress of the DCO and about the new company RiverOak Strategic Partners. This was to correct a lot of miss-information being circulted by people with an opposing view to opening the airfield. Hope this helps.

  2. Terry this does rather leave the problem of who is likely to turn up on your doorstep asking questions that may be related to compensation to cover the cost of insulation your house.

    The other issue is the reduction in life expectancy related to burning 10,000 tonnes of jet fuel upwind of a lot of the Thanet residents, I was discussing this with RiverOaks environmental experts but they seem to have been dropped from the team on the RSP website.

    I think once we know roughly the level of particulates in the plume from Manston we would have some idea of the problem, my back of the packet calculation, which no one has disputed looks like about 3,000 people here die early if they build the freight hub.

    Of course I am probably wrong but it would be reassuring if someone would tell where my mistake is.

  3. Michael, the two aircraft pictures have really foxed me as to where they were taken! I can see that the top one is showing a seaplane, but cannot place where the pic was taken.

  4. WW1 Westgate Seaplane Station which expanded into Manston David


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