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Ramsgate Town Council and Manston Airport

Volume 721: debated on Wednesday 26 October 2022

I rise to present a petition signed by 340 South Thanet residents. I refer the House to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests. I own 2p of share capital, being a 100% holding in a company called Mama Airlines Ltd. It has never traded, has never so much as owned a bank account and has been dormant since its inception in April 2001. It is like keeping a scrapbook of the patchwork of a former life. The company does not even own an Airfix model of an aircraft, let alone a real one.

The petition states:

To the House of Commons,

The petition of residents of the constituency of South Thanet.

We note the previous spending of £10,000 of local Council taxpayer precept by Ramsgate Town Council to attach themselves to a prior judicial review action to prevent aviation activities at the Manston site.

The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport has granted the Manston site development consent (a DCO) so that a new cargo hub and associated businesses can be advanced. The project is promoted by RiverOak Strategic Partners Limited and has long enjoyed the support of both Thanet MPs.

Thanet perpetually has unemployment rates and average salaries behind South-East norms. A re-opened airport is expected to bring huge investment of hundreds of millions of pounds. This means new opportunities and a huge number of new jobs.

The petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges Ramsgate Town Council to accept the decision of the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, work constructively with the Government, RSP, Thanet’s MPs and other local authorities and elected representatives towards the re-opening of the airport, and to refrain from spending more public money on further legal challenges.

And the petitioners remain, etc.