Manston Airport a boost for East Kent businesses

manston cargo airport

September 2023 update: Local businesses rejoice as RiverOak Strategic Partners (RSP) overturn private appeal.

An application to quash the development.  consent by Ramsgate resident Jenny Dawes has been denied. The Development Consent Order (DCO) was granted in July 2020 when the Department of Transport approved the plans. The High Court quashed this application in February 2021 after a legal challenge by Jenny Dawes resulting in the Secretary of State conceding the approval from the Minister of State “did not contain enough detail”. The DCO was granted for a second time in August 2022 by Transport Minister Karl McCartney. Ms Dawes then launched another Judicial Review to try and halt the plans which was quashed.


After years of debate, planning and political posturing, Manston Airport is due to re-open in 2023. Hat’s off to Sir Roger (Gale) who has led the Manston campaign and last night on BBC News requested that the first flight to land should be a Spitfire. Absolutely Sir Roge – 100%.

RiverOak Strategic Partners (RSP) who purchased Manston in 2019 said the “£300m project would create more than 23,000 jobs”. East Kent is going to boom, initially with cargo from all around the world, us locals are also hoping the short haul flights will also come back to Manston. Does Heathrow need the additional runway now?

Historically of course Manston was a WW2 RAF base, but continued after the war as a training centre, cold war air base, cargo and passenger airport. Shame on KCC who wanted housing to line their wallets with tax revenue. This re-birth was always the best long term plan for Thanet and East Kent.

East Kent should also see infrastructure improvements with a proposed rail link and highway improvements inevitable.

Well done to everyone who stuck with it, good luck Riveroak.