Government ‘commits’ £12 million for Thanet Parkway Station – reducing county council investment to £5.8million

Thanet Parkway railway station

The government has committed £12 million funding for the controversial Thanet Parkway Station project at Cliffsend – reducing the amount Kent County Council now have to invest from £17.8 million to £5.8million.

Planning permission for the scheme, which has spiralled in cost from an initial £11.2 million to an estimated £34.5 million, has been on hold due to the pandemic.

The station at Hengist Way will be a  two platform station with the entrance on the north side. There will be a 300 space car park, platforms accessible by stairs, lift and pedestrian bridge.

Waiting shelters, CCTV and passenger information points will be provided on each platform along with ticket machines and a help point to provide remote assistance by intercom.

There will be an additional 20 bays for pick-up/drop-off and taxi parking. The car park includes 16 disabled bays and 19 spaces for electric vehicles. Cycle parking and two bus stops will also be provided.

It is claimed the project will create 800 jobs. The investment comes from the government’s  £900m ‘Getting Building Fund.’ It was one of over 300 successful projects “shovel-ready infrastructure projects” to receive support.

Thanet council has pledged £2million for the scheme, £14 million of Local Growth Fund is also allocated by the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP), and £700,000 from East Kent Spatial Development Company as well as the reduced contribution from  Kent County Council.

The £14 million LGF was approved by SELEP on February 14, subject to planning consent. A SELEP spokesperson confirmed this money remains granted, adding: “The award of £12m Getting Building Fund reduces Kent County Council’s funding contribution to the scheme.”

Proposed Thanet Parkway Station

The costs comprise of:

£19.99m for the station and car park (at 80% probability and inclusive of 11% contingency);

£10.20m for the level crossing upgrades (at 10% probability and inclusive of 57% contingency – this level of contingency is standard industry practice with work at GRIP1 stage);

£4.14m for other costs including the highway junction works, archaeological mitigation works, land purchase, planning costs, legal costs and fees.

The government get building fund also allocates £2.5million for Discovery Park Building 500.

The news follows an appeal in the House of Commons last month by South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay for government support of Thanet Parkway.

Craig Mackinlay

Mr Mackinlay said:“This is tremendous news for the South Thanet constituency in particular, as well as for the Isle as a whole and East Kent.

“It’s well-known that accessibility to London is a major determinant of economic success. Thanet, with its peripheral location, has endured slow journey times to London.  That can now change with a headline journey time of around 1 hour to London Stratford International.

“On the back of the granting of the DCO for Manston supported by £300m of private investment, this £14.5m of public funding is a step-change that will provide a catalyst for regeneration.

“After a difficult period, these are momentous times for Thanet and we can look to the future full of optimism and confidence.”

Earlier this year Thanet councillors Barry Lewis, Karen Constantine (Labour) and Emma Dawson (Con) questioned whether such a large spend should be made on the station in light of the pandemic.

Suggestions had been made that the £17,8 million ring-fenced contribution from Kent County Council should instead be used to fund the coronavirus effort but these were branded ‘disingenuous’ by the authority.

Cllr Barry Lewis said of the funding announcement: “I have spoken to hundreds of people about the problems in Thanet and not one person has said the problem with Thanet is that we only have seven train stations.

“I believe if Thanet Parkway Station is to go ahead all monies should be put in by national government in the same way as Crossrail and HS2. are being funded.

“It is not the job of local councils to give a gift to National Rail without having any ownership of the station.”

Funding for the Discovery Park Incubator will be used to refurbish the ground floor of Building 500 to create world-class research and development space. 50,000 sq.ft. of individual biology and chemistry laboratories together with associated write-up space, and new plant-room equipment will be delivered to attract the companies to this world-class and world-leading science park.

Both projects receiving funding were put forward by the Kent and Medway Economic Partnership (KMEP), the local board of the South East Local Enterprise Partnership’s (SELEP).


    • The airport has as little chance of commercial success now as it ever had. Probably less. And this railway station is not needed.

      • Marva – still doesn’t get it!

        If you don’t want the airport, then move. It was here before you ever was. Do us all a favor!

        • Idiot! Why should people move just because an American Hedge Fund company with no experience of airports wants to come here and wreck the lives of thousands of people living in the CT11 postal area if Manston reopens! This station is unwanted, and will not be used! Wake up people, and go to the Crowd funding website to challenge the decision to over ride the Planning Inspectorate to NOT allow the DCO to re-open Manston!

          • It appears that Manston is not “Shovel ready” The SoS conditions specify that the planning authority (TDC) must consult with Southern Water and Environment Agency and others to permit operations.

            The Judicial Review appears redundant. However it is being pursued by Kate Harrison of HG Law who is allegedly concealing her prior Manston Knowledge (23 3 18 when initially advising SONIK IE Not unknown to South Thanet Labour Party!)

            Now we read the new railway station is shovel ready.

            I have exchanged emails with Tony Freudman of RSP pointing out the case of a Texas air base that housed a fire school. Like nigh 700 air bases it is being remediated and contained re toxic forever chemicals of fire fighting foam residue.

            For groundwater monitoring the Texas base is putting 25 exploratory drills in 12 square miles down gradient of the base.

            If we take Jersey (Channel Island) one aircraft crash many years ago in a field for which firefighting foam was used. In recent years the whole field was excavated to 8 feet depth.

            I suggest you email every member of TDC Planning Cttee and email TDC CEO and Monitoring Officer/Solicitor.

            Environment Agency have a duty to enforce UN Stockholm Convention on Manston. And on its groundwater spread.

            This would apply to plans to develop housing also This has never been a pro or anti issue. This is a Thanet health issue including the sub standard water supply issues.

          • Cllr Green of the red party it was his plan to also build his Green village
            I remember seeing paper work that we had spent £10m but South Eastern pulled out years ago.
            Anyone know why we have cut down trees and wildlife… Destroy peoples lives

            Red and blues makes me sick. It makes purple but ukip are just the same.

            It will destroy us yet again.

            Craig when you going to stop animal abuse

            800 jobs for an unmanned station.

            Wildlife destroyed for our taxes

        • I don’t intend to move. I like Ramsgate.I like being very near the sea.

          It’s “favour”, by the way, in the UK.

        • And smallpox had also been around for hundred of years yet we managed to get rid of it! why dont you move to Heathrow to snort some fumes!

      • I totally agree with both comments. Station not needed and cargo airport not needed. Funding could be far better spent on encouraging businesses in Thanet to grow sustainably and create real jobs without damaging the environment or residents health.

      • Exactly, that’s what the Manston gammons do not seem to be able to comprehend. Probably brain-damaged following all that exposure to aviation fumes…

      • No sense
        TDC giving 2m when we are in debt
        Asking tax payers Craig to give more at this point in time when people are dying.. You astound me

        Thanet is the highest R rate.. Go on Craig do what do best. Kill more people off with poverty

        Richard have you not heard the tories are giving away planning permission.

        Richard you remember Manston Green.

        Richard cares more than any of us put together.

        Thank you for your kindness and showing us the real truth. X

  1. What an absolute waste of money! Well Cliffsend will no longer be a village it will be a suburb of Ramsgate. More wildlife decimated, so much for a climate emergency! This government isn’t happy until we’ve paved over Britain completely.

  2. Next thing will be building on all the farm land up to Hengist way. More houses but still no employment for the inhabitants of Thanet. Money should have been used to encourage employers to this area!

  3. How will this new station speed up the trains???

    Surely one of the 6 stations we already had could have been used or upgraded.

    Only someone with very low IQ could see this money as well spent. Thanet does not need a 7th station or a failing airport. Craig is a naughty Tory. They are all naughty Tories and all deserve their day In court.

  4. TDC nearly bankrupt but they can afford to put £2m of residents money towards an out of town railway station. Rather like RTC pledging up to £10k towards a dubious Judicial Review of the DCO against RSP’s permission to develop the airport

    • Perhaps TDC can take back its donation now that our wonderful government has flung the station a few bob.

    • It’s Grant Shapp’s conclusions on Manston Not-yet-an-airport that are dubious – not the judicial review.

  5. The concern here is 17.8 million from a bankrupt KCC, even if it is ringfenced. The cost of this has jumped massively so I believe the future of this station should be bought into question.

    The problem with KCC is that they’ve been rinsed for years by different parties and councilors, mainly Barry with his unbelievable 20mph zones and donating your taxpayer’s money to charity!

  6. Good news it shows the government are supporting THANET to go forward and prosper, the station will be needed with the airport. All the antis should contact the estate agents and move out and take their constant complaining with them.

    • How will the new station (a passenger station) benefit Manston (a cargo airport)?
      Even if passenger flights eventually begin, the new station is still a km away, and will require a shuttle bus … which could simply shuttle between Manston and Ramsgate or Minster.
      Interesting to consider that Gatwick, Heathrow, Southend, Stansted, London City are are all airports with direct access to a railway.

  7. A few years ago, it was common to hear Kent County Council criticised for just building roads and little else. “For KCC”, it was said “there is no problem that can’t be solved by building a road to it!”

    This railway station is the new version of the same thinking. They don’t intend to use taxpayers money to actually create industries or services in the local area. Instead, they build a faster way to get here! Then they insist that private companies will be so delighted to travel here 15 minutes faster, they will magically invest in job-creation (Rather than invest in the Midlands or the North as they await another new rail line, HS2.)
    All these hundreds of jobs never materialise. Will one local railway station employ 800 people once it has been built and the construction workers are no longer needed?
    It gives the impression that something is being done. It gives the impression that the government cares. It suggests that money is being spent on our area.
    Nothing is further from the truth.
    Most of the building workers will have to be shipped in and the job won’t take that long.
    It will serve as the London commuter station for all the Londoners looking for a quiet life in a new house on the Manston housing estates.
    It will make it easier and faster to LEAVE Thanet and get to London where the jobs are. Why build a branch office or manufacturing facility in Thanet when it is so quick to get the staff into London where the central office is?

  8. I can only see the point of this station if the airfield was used for houses and the target buyers were commuters. That way they could get to London relatively quickly without adding additional pressure to parking at Ramsgate Station which is already a pain. Cycle routes to the Parkway station would have been ideal from Manston.

    The alternative of cargo at Manston doesn’t really lend itself to needing a new train station in my view.

  9. Craig is so ignorant about his constituency. Ramsgate to Stratford is already 1h 7mins. This station would shave just a couple of minutes off that.
    And all those nutters who say it will be great for the airport, just how does a passenger station assist a cargo airport?

    • Of course, another stop on the line will actaullly add to that 1hr 7 mins time and disadvantage current residents of Ramsgate who commute.

  10. More ‘world-class’ rubbish which we don’t need from this unbelievably incompetent government. Throwing good money after bad! Thanet deserves better than this and our MPs should question the decision rather than being dazzled by getting their 15 minutes in the limelight. It’s a vanity project, will probably fail, and will do nothing to improve the lives of the people in Thanet who need it most. Another project for the rich!!!

  11. I hope the government does not give any money to Ramsgate Town Council because RTC will only waste it by giving it to one of their tree hugging buddies named Jenny Dawes. If fact I hope the government does away with RTC the little despots who think they can object and try to stop investment in our area and waste taxpayers money. I hope in due course they are held to account for their outrageous behaviour. On one hand they were begging for National lottery money for some bird brain idea whilst on the other hand they have given away council tax money. Shame on them.

    • I think you’ll find that Ramsgate Town Council is a democratically elected body, elected quite clearly on an “anti-Airport” ticket. The blight the enduring, unending question-mark this proposed airport has dealt us has hidden costs which can never be made good. You are a rude man, Bill, which is a shame and quite unnecessary but does seem typical of Manston supporters. I could say, if you like airports so damn much, move to Crawley. But you’ll find it’s suffering. Air travel is on the ropes, finally. Air cargo even more so. You need to keep up.

  12. A wider view could also be taken. A daily commute into London is about £60 a day but more people can work from home. More Londoner’s will find the more spacious new train station a positive draw and move to Thanet’s glorious coastline. This could help raise the ‘general tone’ of the are but how are local housing providers planning to manage housing for the low waged locals? Just asking!

    • £60 a day for the daily commute? Um, its currently £6940 without underground, so about ~£27 return per working day… if more Londoners can come to Ramsgate to work from home, why would the existing train station not be adequate? And what is this obsession about the low waged locals? How are local housing providers planning to manage housing for the nation?

  13. With Manston, it makes a matching pair of white elephants. Brazillia comes to mind. This money should be spent on ordinary people’s needs

  14. If a new station is needed there than we arent being told what’s really going on. Is there planes for another village to be built in the area ?

  15. Londoners raising the tone of the area? The only thing they raise when they go anywhere is the House Prices.

  16. What do they need a station in the middle of nowhere for? Does this mean thousands of houses are to be built next? Too many train stations in Thanet reducing the times to get to London. What a waste of tax payers money. This government seems to be splashing money here, there and everywhere with no regard to tomorrow. Do they know something we don’t? There are many other worthy projects being overlooked so what is special about this?

  17. Ha ha ha the ‘let’s make THANET gods waiting room mentality” among some on here is very sad really.
    My sister lives in Westgate she told me last week someone called at her door to ask if she would like to join a group to stop a derelict church being knocked down (it’s been empty for years) and office and flats built on the site. My sister sent the woman on her way telling her to grow up. Some would be rather look at an unpleasant site than look at something new. How sad they are.

    • Your sister sounds a charmer, Bill. I don’t see why the said church building couldn’t be re-used for different purposes.

  18. This is similar to Rishi Sunak’s two for one offer on weight watchers foods at Wetherspoons, only its not a up to £10 limit it is an over £10m limit. In this case we get two white elephants for the price of one.The only thing that will be shovel ready is the economy of Ramsgate when it declines.
    For my shovel headed friends who believe in fairies, aliens and perpetual motion, time as they say, will tell.
    Let’s see how well it all looks in a decade from now, assuming we are all spared the wrath of god.

  19. Nice picture of Craig Mackinlay and Charlie Elphicke there. But I thought you weren’t allowed to take photographs in court?

  20. Mark your words, the photo was not taken in court it was taken off the telly of them in parliament. They have both been to court Craig was found not guilty and Charlie was found guilty of two sex attacks the latest MP to be investigated Mark Francois has not been named yet but he has closed down his Facebook and Twitter accounts. So it may or may not be him.

  21. Ah Thanet Parkway. The station in a field that blind and partially sighted travellers won’t be able to use on account there’s no staff to be based there.

    I can see hordes of packing crates of freeze dried fish rushing to get the train there from Stratford and ignoring the closer, cheaper, directly connected trains to Stansted, Luton, Heathrow and Gatwick then queuing for the cargo crate shuttle bus. Lovely jubbly.

    And what is with the 800 jobs? Is this another attack of made up job numbers?

  22. I completely fail to understand how the claim of cutting journey times is tenable. It will cut journey times for someone living next to the station. So, at present, perhaps 20 people. For the remaining 59,000 Thanetians heading to end of the line stations it will make journey times longer. It will also encourage more cars onto the roads to drive to the station. This seems so obvious that I can only assume Mackinlay is wilfully misleading parliament on this issue. To what end I don’t know.

  23. But when you read this on a pro-Manston site, of course a station makes sense…

    “Sir Roger said that he was trying to get TDC to accept that the MoD site of the fire school and the buildings used by PWRR and the associated land should be earmarked for housing, as this would take away the need to build in Westgate and Birchington and on agricultural land and also provide homes for airport workers.”

  24. Can someone point out to Mr Mackinlay that another station will SLOW DOWN trains to London from the rest of Thanet as they will now have to stop at ANOTHER station. And 800 jobs???? Where on earth does that come from? It’s just a lump of concrete in a field.

  25. Great to hear that the London commuter station is going to be built. That will increase the value of the commuter houses going to be built on the disused Manston airport site. Lots of money for our local politicians and their friends. RSP aren’t going to build an airport, they’re going to build lots and lots of houses.

  26. This station is being built for the Londoners that are going to move into the six thousand homes being built on my doorstep at Westwood,where have some you been not to know this?

    • I’ve been in Ramsgate for several years, so why indeed don’t I know this? Nobody else that I’ve mentioned it to knows it either.

    • Lesley the homes being built in Westwood will not be bought by Londoners. They’re not interested in little boxes on a housing estate.

  27. Another proposed building project by the infamous White Elephant Construction Company!! Not wanted. Not needed. A vanity project by the usual delusionals!!!

  28. Mr Mackinlay says “It’s well-known that accessibility to London is a major determinant of economic success. Thanet, with its peripheral location, has endured slow journey times to London.

    Yes and that “accessibility to London” and “,its peripheral location”.

    And that is exactly why manston airport will fail !!!! Yet he sees that as a good thing for a cargo hub being stuck in the middle of now where lol

    • Given that the best journey time to Stratford from Ramsgate is currently just over the hour at 1hr 4m, I don’t see how building a station in a field 1 mile nearer to London is going to make any difference.
      Commuters currently using Ramsgate etc will continue to do so, or face additional travel times of 10s of minutes to get to the new station for a London journey that’s no quicker.
      The fields around Cliffsend are not noted for their hi-tec industries; the new station might attract itinerant cabbage pickers, I suppose.

  29. Perfect for the 6,000 people that RSP believe it is going to create jobs for in it’s opening year rising to 23,000 !!!!

    All pretty amazing when Southampton carries nearly 2 million passengers and say that there are 1,200 jobs associated with their well establish and efficient airport…..

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