Manston Airport in Kent could close - consultation underway

It has been confirmed that Manston Airport in Kent could possibly close.

Live updates

VIDEO: Campaign to keep Manston open begins

The shock news that Manston Airport in Kent faces closure has triggered a top-level campaign to keep it in business.

Senior figures in local and central government are assembling a 'taskforce' of potential investors to rescue the airport from financial crisis.

The announcement by the airport's new owners - of possible shutdown within 45 days was described today as a 'body blow' to Thanet.

The potential of the airport, is seen as vital to the regeneration of east Kent and the creation of thousands of jobs over the next five years.

Thanet MPs Roger Gale and Laura Sandys are pressing for ministerial action. And Kent County Council says closure must be averted.

Today once again the airport's owners declined an interview. Today Fred Dinage spoke to Nicholas Reed, who's founder of the campaign group Why Not Manston.


Union seeks 'clarification' over potential airport closure

The Unite union has responded to an announcement from the managers of Manston Airport in Kent that the site could close. Union officials said they were seeking clarification about the airport's future. A 45-day period of consultation has begun.

“The news has just broken and I am seeking clarification from the management about the airport’s future. Until I have had that conversation, it would not be appropriate to comment at length.

“Unite is the major union at the airport and represents employees, such as the fire service and the baggage handlers. Unite will do everything possible to safeguard the interests of our members in the days and weeks ahead.

“Any loss of employment would be a hard blow for the local economy.”

– Ian McCoulough, Unite regional officer

Councillor 'disappointed' with news Manston could close

Leader of Thanet District Council and Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Regeneration Cllr Clive Hart has given this statement with regard to the possible closure of Manston Airport:

This is potentially a devastating blow to the local economy with the potential loss of direct and indirect employment in Thanet. The council has been clear that it has supported the future development of the airport. We have worked with operators to ensure that the economic benefits to the district could be maximised including the council’s direct port of entry service and therefore this is very disappointing news.’

– Cllr Clive Hart

Consultation of possible closure of Manston Airport

A spokesperson for Manston Airport has given this statement with regards to the possibility the airport could close:

Following a meeting with staff at Manston Airport in Kent today, Wednesday 19th March, we can confirm we have commenced a process of consultation over the possible orderly closure of the airport.

No further comment will be made until the consultation period with staff has been concluded.”

– Manston Airport
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