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Manston Airport given go-ahead by Secretary of State

Manston Airport (Image: James Stewart/Wikimedia/CC BY-SA2.0)

Manston Airport (Image: James Stewart/Wikimedia/CC BY-SA2.0)

A new air freight and passenger hub at the former Manston Airport (MSE/EGMH) has taken a step closer today after the Secretary of State granted a Development Consent Order clearing the way for Riveroak Strategic Partners to build a new airport on the Kent site.

A £300 million investment from Riveroak will see the airport reopen with new infrastructure including new cargo facilities, an improved passenger terminal, improved access to the site and investment in the Hurricane and Spitfire museums.

Thanet North MP Sir Roger Gale welcomed the decision saying it was an opportunity to build an eco-friendly airport that will be a world beater.

The airport closed in 2014 and has since been used as a lorry park under Operation Stack when cross-channel services from the Kent ports are disrupted and later, Operation Brock for the Brexit delays.

Campaigners have been fighting for years to get the site reopened as an airport and today’s decision is the final hurdle for the new owners to start developing it.

As well as the new freight and passenger services, Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facilities will be built and space for aircraft end-of-life and recycling.

Craig Mackinlay MP for South Thanet said the decision was “fantastic news” adding that finally “Manston can fly!”.

Prior to its closure it was used by both British Airways and Virgin Atlantic for training and hosted the Airbus A380 on a number of occasions.

Read the DCO in full

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