Manston: Government permission granted for freight airport


The government has granted permission for Manston Airport to be turned into an air freight hub.

Last year the High Court ordered the Department for Transport to reconsider its decision to grant permission for the works in east Kent.

Owners RiverOak said it will now push on with a £500m redevelopment of the former Battle of Britain airfield.

The Labour group at Thanet District Council, said the decision was a “slap in the face for residents”.

Tony Freudmann, RiverOak director said: “Today is a day to celebrate the culmination of years of campaigning.

“I would like to pay tribute to the extraordinary army of Manston Airport supporters who have never given up hope of seeing new life breathed into this historic aviation asset.”

Manston Airport closed in May 2014 with the loss of 150 jobs.

The debate over the use for the site has split opinion in east Kent for many years.

Councillor Rick Everitt, the leader of the Labour group on Thanet District Council, said: “We stand with residents of Ramsgate and elsewhere who fear the consequences for their town and their quality of life.

“We remain unconvinced that the claimed benefits for local people are real or significant.”

Construction will begin later next year with the airport operating its first cargo services in early 2025, the developers said.