It's been announced that KLM will be operating flights to Amsterdam out of Manston. What seems to be promoted in most of the media is the opportunity for outward bound passengers to then travel on to 130 destinations world wide. More focus on outbound opportunity than inbound to Thanet's own tourism offering.
Nice to hear Charles Buchanan speaking up for Thanet! Erm...
Charles Buchanan, chief executive at Manston Airport, said: “The new services will be a real benefit to Kent and its residents. Passengers will be able to arrive at Manston, park adjacent to the terminal building, check in and be on the flight to Amsterdam within minutes, a hassle-free experience that makes travelling a pleasure. Passengers from Manston can leave home without the worries of road congestion or excessive flight delays affecting their journey.”
Nothing in this statement outlines any boost to our economy. It underlines convenience to residents of Kent to leave the area.
The flights will start from 6.30am, which many involved in the No Night Flights Campaign have rightly pointed out is against Thanet Council's pledge not to allow flights between the hours of 11pm and 7am.
It will be interesting to see the predicted ratio of inward versus outward bound and the possible effect this will have on Thanet's visitor economy. Fancy going away for a quiet break in Thanet and sleeping under a flight path at 6.30am?
I'm sure the folks at Visit Kent and Visit Thanet have our visitor economy covered and wouldn't back something that could damage Thanet's recovering tourism industry.