Monday, April 21, 2008

China Syndrome

This month's formal planning application to build a 175 acre Chinese business park at Manston makes heavy reading, I can tell you. All in all 110 documents have been filed. That's about 109 more than you'd need for your average single storey extension.

Local squillionaire Ken Wills, whose joint venture with the dodgy human rights abusers otherwise known as the Chinese is behind the China Gateway development, has clearly been very thorough. And I can't think of too many people round here who'd sit down with all that bumf for a spot of bedtime reading. All I managed was the glossy Environmental Statement, which reveals that some of the final development will be beyond the designated employment area and use up yet more of our precious countryside. The application rather arrogantly states:

Whilst this portion of countryside land would not normally be developable for such uses, it is considered an appropriate departure from current policy given its strategic location and the unique opportunities presented.

Then abracadabra! There we go! The magic words 'jobs' and 'regeneration' appear, which is bound to get our supine council drooling. As will the sentence: '(It) will put Thanet ‘on the map’ as a major international commercial centre.'

So get out the KY and let's all bend over backwards and/or forwards for the Chinese, eh? Why not let them bulldoze our pastures and build on top of our water supply, I say. Why not let them add up to 17,000 journeys a day to the area, and rumble lorries round our roads and fly knackered old jumbos over our heads? After all, we might lose our pleasant environment, but in return we'll get a few jobs and a load more sheds full of tut out at Westwood Cross. Hurrah!

Click here to go to the UK Planning website. Once you've selected Thanet District Council, go to M, then click on Manston Road. It's the second application down.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Always wondered how squillionaire Wills got his money?

Anonymous said...

The link has been 'closed'! Are the 'plebs' not to see it?

Eastcliff Richard said...

Should be OK now. Night night all.

Anonymous said...

The magic word 'jobs' but for whom and what will they be manufacturing? These will be high-tech jobs and will be specialised so hardly likely to be for the average unemployed/unemployable Thanet folk. Unless the companies undertake massive training programmes I can see the headlines already 'We had to move the company to (insert area of your choice) as we couldn't find enough highly-trained staff in Thanet'. Grupo Antolin said the same but then did close for other reasons for time after (economic slowdown).

Lucy Mail said...

Human rights?
I'd be interested to know what they actually are. The nearest I've ever got to working that one out is that they're either 'a precursor to making benefit claims' or 'entitlement to a tap where there is no water'!
Perhaps someone could take the time to explain to thick old me, what they actually are and why we should be entitled to them.
I'd also like to know, if anyone thinks they can explain without getting all opinionated, what the Hell 'inhumane' means. Nearest I can get to that one is 'not the actions of a human', though, quite clearly, in the apparent absence of alien intelligence, it can only apply to human acts.
Most confusing!
Help?
Bleeding hearts and lefties need not apply!

Lucy Mail said...

While we're on the subject and I'm in the mood for a rant, I'd also like to know how a self-proclaimed millionaire can take such a staunch stance against capitalism. Yes, I know you may not 'actually' be a millionaire but I think you could tell us, truthfully, with hardly any risk of blowing your cover, how many dwellings you inhabit.
Just for a little perspective.

I hope you don't think I'm getting on my high horse, but I am currently 'riding the white pony'. Having said that, I really need to get off to Boots and stock-up.

Anonymous said...

Anyone remember the BBC interview with Ken Wills by paul Ross, classic...

Eastcliff Richard said...

There is a proposal to train a 'quota' of local people in the China Gateway environmental statement, anon. 7:58am, but there doesn't appear to be any definition of how many would make up the 'quota'.

As for 'human rights' Lucy, I think they also extend to freedom of speech, right to a fair trial, that sort of thing. I've got nothing against the Chinese people themselves, it's the way their government treats them, and other people around the world, that I object to. Ditto the US, and ditto the UK for that matter.

And I don't see what my circumstances have to do with that. I'm a fairly paltry millionaire by Ken Wills standards, but yes, I'm better off than your average Thanetian I suppose. I don't think that precludes me from objecting to what I view as the wrong kind of jobs for the area. I would much prefer to see work created in industries such as agriculture and horticulture, marine and maritime, the arts and media, environment, retail, leisure, hospitality that sort of thing. They'd be much more suited to Thanet's unique assets.

Ian J said...

It may well be an application driven by no other though than to serve the local people of Thanet, to bring to the hard working and industrious people the benefits of modern technology, running water and top line leach treatments for grumble brain.

Oh! look a flying pig.

Anonymous said...

Let's tell them to bugger off.

Anonymous said...

Can't access the application

Anonymous said...

http://www.ukplanning.com/ukp/showCaseFile.do;jsessionid=14D67EC0703E4E01666A5973E66B40F3.wam2?action=show&appType=planning%20folder&appNumber=F/TH/08/0400

Eastcliff Richard said...

The link seems a bit dodge. I've altered it so that it now takes you to the list for Manston Road. The China Gateway application is the second one down, just below Tesco's application to do car valeting.

Anonymous said...

Rather a lot of "unknowns" including number of employees, number of vehicles per day,processes to be carried on, machinery installed, AND the end products! So it's vaguely a building thing making er... something or other. But it will employ...er... maybe some people.

Anonymous said...

Well I have tried to view this plan but it seems to have disappeared.

Anonymous said...

www.ukplanning.com/ will take you to the home page you can then search for Thanet, then click under M for Manston Road, then on Manston Road, second application down.

Anonymous said...

F/TH/08/0400
is the application number.

Anonymous said...

Apparently the companyat this end are dealing with the Chinese equivalent of SEEDA and will have no say over who will come here or what kind of product they'll be manufacturing. A giant leap into the dark it would seem.

Michael Child said...

I am sceptical of any very large project that relies either on one enterprise, especially foreign or the political stability and continuing good relationship with a foreign country. We paid for the infrastructure of the Sally Line and the result is the west beach is a lorry drivers toilet, hoverport now just a source of pollution everyone knows that Pfizer could just pull out one day if times get tough.

Dick Rubin said...

ECR, if you're a bit loaded can you lend me a pony till payday as I'm a bit strapped and need to get blasted out my skull next weekend. You never know, might bump into old Latchy on the way to the boozer.

Anonymous said...

This from Chinamex website Nov 2007

"the delegation visits the Headquarters of Chinamex and meets with Hao Feng, Chairman of Chinamex, to further negotiate their cooperating projects. The delegation also visits Beijing 3J International STEEL Building Co., Ltd, Tsinghua Science Park, Sina, Aigo" (capitals mine)