No Estuary Airport Campaign Public Meetings

BBC Radio Kent arranged a debate on Airport Expansion in Kent and the Thames Estuary on Tuesday 30th October 2012.

  Now the Airports Commission has agreed with us and the option of an airport in the estuary has been rejected. The reasons were economic (cost), environmental (protected), opertational (Heathrow and potentially other airports would have to close) and complexity.

The Vice Chair Chris Fribbins has put together a series of Blogs about the airport issues at (click here) These have been updated to include information of the submissions to the Davies Commission and 2014 update.

DCPS will be involved in any formal consultation and have been speaking to people throughout our area at public meetings and events to argue NO ESTUARY AIRPORT

For more information follow the issues on Twitter #noestuaryairport and keep up to date with campaigning

for general Aviation issues @airportwatch and see what is happening aropund the world

Lower Thames Crossing Public Meetings

There have now been two public meetings in our area to discuss the plans of Kent and Essex County Councils to build a crossing of the Thames. The stated aim of this was to relieve pressure on Dartford Crossing, which is causing major traffic congestion in the peak periods and restricting growth in the counties. This was aimed, primarily at the HGV traffic from the Channel Ferries at Dover and the Channel Tunnel  traffic from Folkestone.

Essex want to join this up to the M11. Kent go no further than connection to the A2 and major improvements to the M2/A229 Junction at top of Bluebell Hill and M20/A229 junction at the bottom. The preferred option was now a tunnel rather than a very high level bridge (initial cost £1.25bn, but higher maintenance cost). There would be tolls.

.... but the preferred route is across the North Thames Marshes between Chalk and Shorne. Environmentally sensitive area and protected by local, regional, national, european and world designations. No impact on A226, A227 & A228 assessed.  

The first meeting was organised by KCC and Higham Parish Council on 2nd February. Paul Carter (leader of KCC) presented the case for and Richard Knox-Johnston (ProtectKent - CPRE(KENT)) presented the case against and the alternatives.

The second meeting was organised by Shorne Parish Council on 17th March. Richard Knox-Johnston (ProtectKent) outlined the county wide issues and DCPS Chair Robin Theobald outlined the local impacts.

How about removing the tolls and providing a consistent 4 lane route northbound and 5/6 lane route southbound? If tolls HAVE to be collected, there are already plans to move to Automatic Number Plate Recognition and payment could be done before or after as with the London Congestion Zone.

Both meetings were standing room only and were attended by over 300 each.

Despite these plans being investigated for many years, at the moment there are no specific plans or formal consultation. The financial and environmental cost is high and it is lilkely that this may never happen, but we need to be ready. DCPS will working with others to ensure we are ready.

There was consultation on three routes :

1) Dartford Crossing (at existing crossing) - If crossing required this is our preferred route. (A)

2) Swanscombe Peninsula - now ruled out by the Department for Transport (B)

3) Crossing east of Chalk - crossing the marshes - preferred by Kent and Essex County Councils !! (C)

In Thurrock there have been noises that the crossing should be further east (Cliffe or further) but there have not been any other indications that this is supported as it is a wider part of the river and crosses environmentally protected marsh.

Dates for a decision continue to be put back and Autumn 2015 is now expected.

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