About Manston Airport

about manston airport

A short bit of information about Manston Airport…

There has been an airport of sorts at Manston for over 100 years.  In the winter of 1915–1916, early aircraft began to use the open farmlands between Minster and Manston as a site for emergency landings. The Admiralty Aerodrome at Manston was opened in response. A training school was soon established. By the close of 1916, there were already two units stationed at Manston: the Operational War Flight Command and the Handley Page Training School.

At 2,748 m (9,016 ft) long, it has the eleventh-longest civilian runway in the United Kingdom (after Heathrow (2), Gatwick, Birmingham, Manchester, Stansted, East Midlands, Doncaster, Prestwick and Belfast International). Manston is capable of handling some of the larger long-haul aircraft. The runway was originally built with three “lanes” during the war to handle emergencies, and is among the widest in Europe.

The airport was purchased from Infratil by the so-called philanthropist and Stagecoach magnate Ann Gloag in November 2013.

It was announced on 6th May 2014 that the airport would close, and full closure occurred on 15th May 2014 with the loss of at least 144 jobs.  Following closure, campaigns were launched to reopen the airport, although the airport’s owners stated their intention to redevelop the site.

In September 2014, the site was “sold” to two Northern businessmen, Trevor Cartner and Joseph (Christopher) Musgrave.

A British company, RiverOak Strategic Partners Ltd, is seeking a Development Consent Order in order to return the Manston Airport site to aviation use, with plans for an advanced cargo and freight facility to make the most of the need for runway capacity in the south east.