Tuesday, 6 May 2008


I have promised Amy that Thanetstrife will support her campaign to object to The China Gateway project and please go along and support her on Friday.

In the meantime get onto your ward councillors, and let them know your opinions and make sure you object by THIS FRIDAY to the application.

If you have anything you want to say about protecting Thanet's water supply, agricultural land, wildlife, Landscape Character Area or wish to register objections to CGP's Gateway Project you will need to act quickly. This is the detail from TDC's web-site:

Comments need to be submitted to the council by Friday 9 May to either doug.brown@thanet.gov.uk or in writing to Planning, Thanet District Council, PO Box 9, Cecil Street, Margate, CT9 1XZ.You should quote Application F/TH/08/0400

If you have been wondering about the title to this post, let me now elaborate. There are at present TWO main threats to Thanet's main supply of drinking water. One is from a spillage at Kent International Airport, Manston, that sits on our water catchment area and the other is The China Gateway project that not only sits slap bang in the middle of possibly our most important water catchment area but will actually extend into the immediate protection zone of it (Zone 1).

Whilst the Environment Agency has been sending CGP Ltd information the EA does not seem to be taking too much interest at the moment. The other organisation that has been quiet on this issue appears to be Southern Water. Sources tell me that they not are answering enquiries from our local press or media and seem amazingly reticent to discuss the matter.

I was unaware, until a source sent me an interesting report made by OFWAT on 3rd August 2004 (Case CA98/02/17) that Mid Kent Water had raised a complaint against alledged 'dodgy' practice by Southern Water in regard to our Eurokent Business Park. Southern Water had initially said that costs for it to provide water, wastewater and infrastructure services to this development site (Eurokent) would cost in the region of £100,000 and £500,000 and then , presumably with Mid Kent Water also interested in being the provider of these services, offered the infrastructure services at no charge. OFWAT came to the conclusion that no breach of the law had ocurred as Southern Water had 'misunderstood' the requirement and the complaint from Mid Kent Water was not up-held.

What, might you ask , has this to do with China Gateway?

I am only a 'layman' in these matters but in a post below, I discussed CGP Ltd's idea to have Klargester septic tank systems installed for foul waste and nice little sunken pits to collect water run off from hard-standing and buildings rather than the 'safer' option of having Southern Water (or another Water Company) put in the infra-structure to remove all nasty stuff away from OUR AQUIFER.

Of course, whilst this would be SAFER it would also be costly. (Look at your own household bills to see what Southern Water charges are for sewage disposal and rain-water run off; mine are as follows: Wastewater: £184.18; Wastewater standing charge: £27.28; Surfacewater drainage: £22.00 and Highway drainage: £7.00. In other words my fresh drinking water is only a THIRD of my bill but a staggering 66% of my £361 water bill is for waste/runoff removal).

Did Southern Water quote for CGP Ltd for the China Gateway project and if so how much? Was any other Water supplier involved? If my Southern Water bill lands with a heavy thud on my mat each year, I wonder did CGP Ltd directors, Ken Wills and ' I make a quick profit' Chris Seymour-Prosser, eyes water at the costs submitted by Southern Water?

So my drinking water in Thanet, and yours too, looks to be at greater risk than needed because CGP Ltd want to take the cheapest option with KLARGESTER systems and SUDS etc and thus avoid having to pay Southern Water to put in the infrastructure and remove all foul waste and run-off from 4,000 employees; 300 lorries and almost 4,000 cars on their site, let alone any accidental spills, safely away from our aquifer.

I sincerely hope that our Councillors at TDC and that wonderfully informed Doug Brown at TDC Planning have grasped the situation fully and will insist on a full sewage/wastewater removal infrastructure from Southern Water before CGP Ltd are given any go-ahead. It might dent CGPs 'bottom-line' on this lucrative scheme but at least it protects our water supply.

Just in case, they haven't, I am now replacing the wine in the cellar with bottled water; I might just need it.


Michael Child said...

What really worries me is that once this is an industrial estate, units can and probably will change hands, meaning that pretty much any engineering process can go on here. You could for instance have a casehardening plant that uses a cyanide dip and large amounts of water flush the cyanide off the product, as a very few parts per million is deadly poisonous. Or you could have the manufacture of semiconductors where arsenic is used in conjunction with silicone and other chemicals to make the electronic components that we all use.

Frankly no matter how good the drains are or where they go, you only have to have one firm with a lax approach to health and safety, or one lazy apprentice poring something nasty away behind the furthest warehouse, that he or she can’t be bothered to fill in all the statutory forms about and dispose of properly, and our main water sources are contaminated.

I would remind you that part of this development is over zone 1 where pollution takes less than 50 days to reach the borehole.

Anonymous said...

Good news, my mole in TDC says the deadline for objections to the Manston scheme has been extended to the end of June. The Planning Cttee will hear this in July - apparently central govt wanted there to be a 16 week period for objections etc.

Nick, Whits

Michael Child said...

Nick anything in writing, its not that I don’t trust TDC or anything like that, but I would like to be certain before postponing my objection.

Bertie Biggles said...

Nick, someone has e-mailed Doug Brown at TDC Planning Dept for clarification and I await news. The problem with this sort of'buzz' is that unless it is in writing from TDC,late objections can be ignored. Amy, over at Manston, has heard a similar rumour. If it is true, this is good news as it implies a serious re-think is perhaps already in progress?

Anonymous said...

Its true you can object up an till the planning meeting done it lots of times and not just to say No!!

Michael Child said...

That didn’t work with the Pleasurama development 10.50 we all learnt that the building was very different to the one in the planning and design statement at least a week before the planning meeting, but were told it was too late to object. As Cllr Green was on to it I don’t think there was a mistake.