Riveroak Strategic Partners appear set to delay DCO application until early spring 2018

In Sir Roger Gale’s column this week in the Thanet Extra, he has announced that he is strongly requesting RSP to carry out further consultations with those underneath the flight path.
 
In addition suggests that will likely delay the DCO application to ‘early Spring’
 
Councillor Chris Wells has also issued a response.
 
EXTRACT from Sir Roger’s column:
“Nevertheless, I recognise the concerns of some of my constituents living in Herne Bay and by others living in Ramsgate. That is why, even at the risk of slightly delaying RiverOak’s application for the necessary Development Consent Order, I have strongly requested that the company goes out to further consultation with those living under the flightpath in Beltinge, Reculver and in South Thanet.
 
I hope and expect that such further consultation might be carried out in the New Year, leading to the submission of a DCO application in the early spring. More haste can sometimes lead to less speed and it is essential that genuine, if misplaced concerns are allayed.”
 
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FULL ARTICLE:
In My View – Sir Roger Gale MP
It is because of blundering incompetence and the failure of the controlling group and the Leader of Thanet District Council to generate a Local Plan that reflects the wishes of the local electorate that the Secretary of State for Local Government has indicated that he will if necessary impose a plan upon Thanet and a small number of other local authorities.
 
It is not, as some have sought to suggest, because of support for what has been wrongly described describes as “a polluting air cargo hub”.
In local and national elections the people of east Kent have voted for candidates that have supported and in most cases continue to support the re-opening of Manston Airport. That the UKIP Leader of Thanet Council has decided to renege on the clear undertaking, given in election material by Mr Farage, that “We Will Save Manston Airport” is a matter of regret.
 
That Cllr Wells is now seeking to insert alternative uses into the Local Plan is, for the Conservative Party, for some Labour Councillors and for UKIP Councillors who wish to honour their election pledge, a sticking point.
It is likely that unless Cllr. Wells and his cabinet withdraw the proposed change of use for Manston Airport then the Local Plan, when it is voted upon January, will be defeated and I would welcome the intervention, at that point, of the Secretary of State.
At a meeting with the Housing Minister a week ago I indicated that Thanet has more than sufficient brownfield land and other available sites to meet its local housing needs without sacrificing agricultural land. I believe that that point has been taken and understood.
RiverOak are planning a cargo hub and freight handling facility, a passenger service, provision for general aviation and ancillary aviation-related businesses that, taken as a whole, has the potential to create over time many thousands of skilled and semi-skilled jobs. As we leave the European Union that capacity to handle long-haul freight will be needed and I believe that is a prize worth fighting for.
Nevertheless, I recognise the concerns of some of my constituents living in Herne Bay and by others living in Ramsgate. That is why, even at the risk of slightly delaying RiverOak’s application for the necessary Development Consent Order, I have strongly requested that the company goes out to further consultation with those living under the flightpath in Beltinge, Reculver and in South Thanet.
 
I hope and expect that such further consultation might be carried out in the New Year, leading to the submission of a DCO application in the early spring. More haste can sometimes lead to less speed and it is essential that genuine, if misplaced concerns are allayed.”
ENDS
 
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Response by Councillor Chris Wells:
“I read Sir Roger’s comments with interest. He appears to be in direct conflict with his own government’s agenda in advocating delay to the Local Plan process.
I was however, delighted to hear of his recent meeting with the Housing minister, when Sir Roger explained that, “Thanet has more than sufficient brownfield land and other available sites to meet its local housing needs”.
I am excited to hear such a simple solution is available to us.
So please Sir Roger, list those sites where the housing your government wants for this area can go. That is all that anyone consulted really needs to know to make an informed choice about the Manston site.
It’s time to ‘put up or shut up’.”
ENDS

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