Deal to use the Manston airport site for Operation Stack extended for two years

Manston airport site

A Government arrangement to use the former Manston airport site as an emergency lorry park for Operation Stack has been extended for two years

Aa announcement  earlier this month from the Department for Transport said the site will “continue to be used during severe cross-Channel disruption, helping to further reduce the impact on Kent.”

It comes after plans for a lorry park at Stanford West, near Ashford, were ditched.

The amended deal went before Parliament yesterday (November 27)

The new order means the site can be used for Stack until  December 31, 2019. The arrangement had been due to finish at the end of this December.

Stack area in dark outline, red outline is the Manston airport/SHP site

A Department for Transport announcement stated earlier this month: “Highways England will now develop new plans for a permanent solution, including a lorry park, to cope with disruption on Kent roads caused by cross-channel disruption as well as providing daily parking for lorries.

“A consultation is set to take place next year, ahead of a planning application in 2019.”

The deal to use Manston as a short-term solution was first struck with site owners Stone Hill park in August 2015 following a Summer of disruption due to French strikes and growing migrant camps in Calais, with many attempts to illegally enter the UK through Dover and the Channel Tunnel.

The aim was to park lorries up at the site and so reduce pressure on the M20.

The Department for Transport paid the Manston site owners £3.539million to prepare and maintain it in the event it would be needed. The site has not yet been used for Operation Stack.

Work to prepare the site included  fitting floodlighting and painting lines for parking HGVs up as well as adding toilets and shower blocks.

Read here for the routes while Manston airfield is in use during Operation Stack


  1. Not a problem, all of the taxiways , stands, and airside hangers can be constructed without encroaching on the Runway….Plus, Highways England are committed to restoring the Runway to Operational State,….A complete resurface will likely be required..
    Op Stack only requires access to the Runway, not any other part of th site…

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  3. Good plan and further distresses any airport development by bottom feeding shark investors who want to land grab someone else’s property.

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