Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I Love The Smell Of Jet Fuel In The Morning

This sign has recently appeared on the site of Ramsgate's Royal Sands development (Pleasurama in old money). Amongst other things it promises potential buyers 'the opportunity to wake up in the morning to the sounds of waves lapping on the beach and the smell of the freshest sea air'.

Hmm. More like 'the opportunity to be woken up in the middle of the night by the roar of knackered old jumbos and the smell of nitrous oxide and aviation fuel', methinks! And as for 'waves lapping on the beach' it could be more like 'waves lapping through the ground floor of your apartment block' if the Environment Agency is to be believed!

Speaking of knackered old jumbos, I see there was a veritable flight of the phoenix this afternoon as our old friends MK Airlines made an unwelcome return to the Millionaires' Playground. If you recall, MK, famous for their Canada and Nigeria crashes, went tits up last month only to be refinanced by a mystery investor so that they could return and blight our lovely Victorian seaside town all over again. Who knows, if car-sized chunks can fly off even Qantas's lovely, modern 747s, perhaps the occupiers of Royal Sands might one day have the opportunity to gaze out to sea from their own private balcony on a scene not dissimilar to this:


tony flaig bignews said...

Another case of denial, Manston is has existed since the dawn of our modern world.

Your arguements about Manston being unsustainable don't stand up.

According to BBC radio kent, this morning flights have already been confirmed for 2009 Serugo and flights are running at 95% capacity.

Anyone who has flown from manston in recent times, will appreciate how relaxed the experince was.

For the 1.6 million people of Kent traveling to Manston it is far easier than the hassle of Gatwick or Heathrow.

What would you prefer airport or some grisly housing estate?

Anonymous said...

Tony....you're boring!!!!

Anonymous said...

Cor, you wait until the middle of August when BA start training flights every weekend then.
I am told that there will be three planes training.

tony flaig bignews said...

the truth often is 8:14

Anonymous said...

Holy cow - that photo begs more questions than your blog. Please tell us the real story of that photo.

Peter Checksfield said...

At the risk of being called boring I'm with Tony on this one.

Anonymous said...

Tony rocks!

steve said...

tony, a military airbase and a commercial airport are two completly different things.

Serugo are advertising, but you can't book. I'm sure they are seeing if there is any interest before taking any cash.

would that be the 50 passenger flights running at 95% capacity? Source KIA's website;

JERSEY – Departs every Saturday from 10th May – 6th September - 18 flights

MADEIRA – Departs 8th October - 1 flight

LAKE GARDA – Departs 25th May, 22nd June & 21st September - 3 flights

SORRENTO – Departs 20th June & 29th August - 2 flights

CROATIA – Departs 17th June - 1 flight

MALTA – Departs 18th & 25th November - 2 flights

MAJORCA – Departs every Friday from 2nd May – 8th Oct (excluding the period 27th June – 24th July)- 19 flights

GRAN CANARIA – Departs every Tuesday from 29th July – 19th August - 4 flights

Being rather generous, I'll give you 100 passngers per flight. Thats 5,000 people capacity, 4,750 if 5% of seats were empty.

Of 1.6mm people of kent so close and eager to travel from Manston, I'm a little suprised only 0.2969% of them have booked a flight this year.

Anonymous said...

so easy to be boring when you don't have several tonnes of plane screaming overhead every couple of minutes. And before you bang out the old classic 'the airport was here first' it doesn't mean it's right or acceptable to have your quality of life ruined by training flights. The occasional scheduled flight to an actual destination would be a relief frankly.

tony flaig bignews said...

Steve I reckon you with your analysis you would have been just the sort of person who would have been at home in the EUjet set up.

True the number of flights are small that's because unlike the brave but stupid EUjet model, those involved at Manston are working hard to grow a business, in a sustainable way.

EUjet had 5 planes at the start business and a few weeks later about 30 destinations at some point no shock then when they went tits up. Not surprisingly, businesses have to grow, in a controlled manner, Heinz I would guess did not start with 57 blimin varieties nor Tesco with a superstore in every town these businesses grow because they offer value and quality.

Good luck to infratil, and yes the airport has existed during most peoples life times so upsetting as it is yes its something we should accept.

Again if Manston does not succeed just what do you think will replace it maybe a little nature reserve or more likely a massive new housing estate!

tony flaig bignews said...

Steve just a final point if you are suggesting that current number of flights at Manston is the full potential whats your problem??

steve said...


not sure how I would have been at home in the eujet set-up? explain please?

what could be in place of manston? leisure facilities, seeing as margate and ramsgates got burned down. visitirs need something to do when the sun ain't shining. Housing? I think we have enough of it, but and executive out of town estate I'm sure could take up some of the space. China Gateway?T hanet Earth? Instead of building on agricultural land, it might have been better to use a brownfield site. Car park for the port? Wind farm? You might even have enough space for a small airstrip. Have you got any ideas?
I'm sure you are well up on current affairs, so would be familiar with the difficulties and pressures the air industry is under. It seems a litte naive for our council to be supporting such a huge area under their control to a struggling industry. Where infratil are hedged with there sustainable energy division, TDC need a busy airport otherwise they have what they have now - 2,700 metres of under-used tarmac and nack all else.

I'm not suggesting its the full potential. Infratil, KCC and TDC see the full potential as 10mm passengers a year. That should be avoided at all costs for the sake of the whole of thanet. No-one at the moment is stopping the airport from taking 750k passengers a year, but it can't muster more than 5k. I'd say thats a failure in anyones eyes, and don't understand why I pay council tax for our illustrious leaders to support it.

Michael Child said...

I believe the real problem is that the airport lies on top of our underground drinking water reservoir, meaning that if we have an air accident on the grass bit of it the resulting fuel spillage could permanently destroy our main water source. Before any expansion occurs a proper risk assessment should be undertaken.

Anonymous said...

How on earth can 'the airport has been there for 100 years' be an argument for keeping it? Of course it was useful in WW1 and WW2 but it has outlived its usefulness.

Tony presumably listens to his wind-up gramophone as he trundles along the country lanes in his Model T. Wake up to the future Grandad!

tony flaig bignews said...


What the current operators are doing is growing the business in a way that is sustainable.

What you clearly don't understand is that business has to grow thats why, and your making my point, why your line of thinking would have fitted in with the EUjet crowd they seemed to think they could operate as if they were easy jet or Ryan air from day one ignoring that even they had to build a customer base.

Anonymous said...

Re. the holiday flights this year. My neighbours went to Jersey in mid-June and shared the 50 seater plane with 22 other passengers both ways so only half-full.

I flew several times with EUJet inlcuding daytrips to Amsterdam and Edinburgh. Loved the experience but as has been said before, too many destinations and only 5 planes.

We didn't find out until after the owner had over-reached himself and had sold to Planestation that it wasn't the first time he'd failed with a start-up airline.

Even Ryanair is finding things hard going at the moment so those people with holiday properties handily situated for cheap Ryanair flights might be regretting their decision to buy abroad.

steve said...

thanks Tony, and you make my point as well. Sustained growth by the airport, and its Thanets residents sustaining it with nothing in return for the vast majority of us (at least 123,000 residents, assuming it was 4,750 Thanetonians who took the bait)

Anonymous said...

Here's a definition of Thanetian:


If you ask me 'Paleocene' just about sums the place up when it comes to caring for our environment round here

Anonymous said...

Infratil's portfolio includes wind farms. Has anyone else heard that their long term aim is to put a wind farm on Manston? This rumour has been doing the rounds for some time now.

Anonymous said...

Steve, it wont be a wind farm it will be a housing estate and dumping ground for all Kent and london authorities, like it is now.

Anonymous said...

sod the envoirenment, etc, lets have loads of jobs and a bit of cash so I can pay my mortgage

steve said...

1:18pm, ask yourself why the area is a dumping ground. Low affluence, cheap accomodation - sounds like a town under an airport flightpath. Its a viscous circle.

Anonymous said...


To get this strand back on track.

I believe Flamingo Holdings bailed out MK? a chap called Green paid the bill just how many Kenya notes he paid one does not know?

I do know that last night go arounds created no jobs whatsoever?

I can see that it created a lot of jibes though?

Alan bstairs said...

Steve that bignews tony is spot on. Wake up and sniff the coffee

Alan bstairs said...

Steve that big news tony is spot on again. Wake up and sniff the coffee

steve said...

Anon 6:46 and 6:47pm. well done. you've persuaded me. 10mm passengers down the road and over our heads is a good idea.

Nescafe anyone?

tony flaig bignews said...

yes please!

Eastcliff Richard said...

Show some class, Tony!

Anonymous said...


ECR we want our prop back!!

Anonymous said...

Steve, yes your right it is a viscous circle, i just don't want to see a massive grim estate then you/we can kiss goodbye to any regeneration potential jobs etc, believe you me there are those in real power and those who have the ear of power who would like nothing more than to fulfill central gov targets by keeping west kent, as they see it 'problem free'.

Eastcliff Richard said...

This viscous circle you all keep talking about - would that be another way of saying it's a sticky situation?!?

Anonymous said...

If you take the dead airoplane and the bloke out of the picture its a view I could look at all day!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Air Travel is dead. It just won't lie down.

Anonymous said...

I think Tony and Steve should get a room . It is like one of those Spencer Tracy and Katy Hepburn movies edgy and angry but quietly simmering under neath is the makings of a romance.

A wind farm sounds fantastic bolt some of those beasts down on the runway and keep the training flights going ,if they can land between the rotor blades then give them a job.

This is now 34 posts is this your record ECR?

steve said...

anon 0946. tell me how you are qualified to work at an airport? I could most certainly flip burgers, pack bags or work the graveyard shift sweeping the runway, but none would pay me enough to make it worth my while giving up all that loverly benefit my adopted country gives me.

11pm - alcohol and internet = tw@t

Eastcliff Richard said...

Er, not quite 11.00pm. That would be 110. Which, ahem, is the all time record for a Thanet blog.

Anonymous said...

Well Steve I think baggage work might not be such a good idea given your viscous circle. With that kind of spelling where would the bags end up ? .
Kooorea, Nu Yalk, Ostrailia .

Stick to the benefit cheques where a cross will do.

steve said...

1:01pm, sorry, would have replide sooner but loose women was particularly interesting today.

apologies for the spelling mistake, its a pet hate of mine when others get things wrong. I should no better.

do you have an opinion on the discussion or are you just here correct spelling mistakes?

jet charter said...

Oh, my god! That is a shocking to read. And what a picture, that's the case when one picture tells more that a thousand words.