Saturday, 28 June 2008

DOES CGP THINK THAT CHINA GATEWAY IS A DONE DEAL?













Let me introduce you all to CGP. who were so generous in 'co-sponsoring' TDC's Big Event the other week-end.The top picture is Chairman Robin Boulton and the rest are directors: Chris Seymour-Prosser, Ms Julie Wing (the best looking of the bunch), Brian Moritz and of course our own £25,000 supporter of Dr Ladyman, Ken Wills.
You might think that Amy Murray and her little band of protestors in Manston are outgunned but at least Bertie is reliably informed that Phase 1 Application will not be in front of the other Ken and his team of Councillors on 16th July and will have to wait until August before coming to the Planning Committee. That will not please CGP whose share price seems to have fallen from about 350p in Aug 2007 to 115p or thereabouts more recently.
For those of you who thought that we live in a democracy where the people represented by their Councillors make decisions for the benefit of the Community impartially and without bias or favour but after careful contemplation and consideration of all the facts, I ask simply what do you make of the following?:
1. Extract from CGPs Chairmans Annual Statement:
"CHAIRMAN'S STATEMENT
I am delighted to present Commercial Group Properties Plc' first annual audited report since its admission to AIM on 21 February 2007.
Our first period has been one of considerable progress. Our strong relationship with our partners in China has enabled us to enter into agreements to lease and a memorandum of understanding to lease at least 3,400,000 sq ft AT OUR CHINA GATEWAY SITE AT MANSTON (my capitals)We have also established a joint venture, with Chinamex Middle East Investment and Trade Promotion Centre, which has entered into non binding heads of terms to acquire a 55 acre brown field site in Wigan to construct a further China Gateway development.
Our current financial year promises to be one of further significant growth in the company.
I would like to thank our executive team for their excellent work which has placed Commercial Group Properties Plc in such an enviable position.
Robin Bolton Chairman 20 May 2008
Sorry, Mr Boulton, but it is not your China Gateway yet nor Chinamex's. The Councillor's who represent the people of Thanet have yet to consider your application to build your project on prime agricultural land outside TDC's own Thanet Plan; on top of our drinking water aquifer and ruin a rural area of OUR Thanet and ruin the lives of OUR citizens in Manston and Acol. What makes you think that it is going to go ahead? Are you not anticipating the democratic process?
Let me tell you some more from CGP's Annual Report:
"Manston
The Manston site, which has been named "China Gateway", is located at the North West end of Kent International Airport and, at the time of the IPO, comprised 100 acres of open space and agricultural land within a partly developed business park. Subsequently, on 15 March 2007, CGP purchased, for £5.1 million, a further 73 acres of agricultural land adjacent to the original site.
On 22 June 2007, Beijing ASME signed an agreement to lease between 900,000 sq ft and 1,100,000 sq ft of business accommodation on 49.5 acres of the Manston site. The lease, which is supported by Chinamex, is for a term of 10 years from handover.
On 2 August 2007, CGP entered into a memorandum of understanding with Zhejiang Province, acting through Chairman Bao of the Taizhou Foreign Merchant Information Federation, to lease 2,500,000 sq ft at Manston.
Most recently, on 31 March 2008, CGP submitted an application for detailed planning consent for 1,481,815 sq ft of commercial development on the site. WE ANTICIPATE ( my capitals) receiving the response to this application by September 2008, which should allow construction to commence in 2009. Upon receipt of this consent, CGP then intends to submit a planning application for consent for the next 1,776,663 sq ft of the development. "
Why should Mr Boulton and his directors (presumably major shareholders ) anticipate and assume that TDC will approve of Phases 2 and 3 which are outside The Thanet Plan and even accept their unacceptable proposals to put X type warehouses in SPZ 1 of OUR aquifer and so close to Acol as to ruin the quiet life that the people of Acol (like the rest of us) are entitled to lead, in the Phase 1 Application currently causing a nightmare for poor Doug Brown at TDC?
CPRE have alresdy made the point, as have numerous Thanet citizens, that this whole project is a ' creeping application' of 3 phases and Phase 1 should be thrown back until all 3 Phases are applied for: i.e. the 'entirity' should be considered by our elected Councillors.
I do not like the idea that developers can seem to make assumptions, in OUR Thanet, that will affect all our lives for years to come. We have seen on TV how Chinese farmers and villagers get kicked off their land for development and building and that the police are used against them if they dare to protest. The difference is that China is not a democracy; we are.

42 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bertie, problem is even when considered by our 'elected councillors' will they take an impartial and analytical approach to the decision making process. I suspect some may not be as impartial as we would hope and as for anyalytical skills, while they may have hearts of gold, some are not the brightest crayons in the box.

Anonymous said...

They didn't go all the way to China, expenses paid, to turn it down now.

sue said...

Bertie, you need a direct link from your home page to your water supply site so people can find it easily and see the facts.

Ken Gregory said...

Well, at risk of being controversial, As far as I know, no one on planning has been to china recently. If they had I would expect them to declare an interest and leave, if the gateway project came up.

More seriously, I can assure you all, that members of the planning committee will! deal with this application in an impartial manner.

With regard to 'phases'2 and 3, they would have to go to the Government office for the South East for approval.

Despite all the 'chatter' the planning committee will make up its mind on the information given, not on any amount of 'pressure' from any source.

Tony Beachcomber said...

Bertie, do you remember Foreness Action group back in late nineties, well it was the residents from Palm Bay opposed to the development of the sewage treatment works at Foreness Point. They really slugged it with Southern Water and one of their arguemants against the works was that once water had been seperated from the sewage it should not be pumped into the sea.They lobbied Southern Water to pump the water back in land for treatment because they were concerned at the long term water shortage Thanet could be facing with future housing development and the increase in population.You will be very interested to know that one of the proposers and a member of Foreness Action Group at the time was the current leader of TDC. He had Foreness Action group mobilsed behind him in may 1999 elections and won by a landslide.
Foreness Action group researched into the subject well and really gave SW a good run for their money.
I have none of their reports but I can remember a quote on these lines from the draft 1983 urban plan that was used.
"Until a new major source of water supply is made by southern water authority,development proposals which do not comply with the plans policies will be resisted so as to safeguard the water supply of existing consumers in Thanet." This quote came form the Isle of Thanet Geographical Association, Thanet Panorama volume 16 and even back then there was concern over future water supply from them.
It is strange that people who were really concerned about our water supply at the time do not seem to be very vocal at the present.

Anonymous said...

Breaking News

I heard that Cllr Worrow is part Chinese and might be a Triad agent and this is why he had to join the Tory Party, Ken knows this but will deny it because he is really a robot (made in china) and is Controlled by OBE-1 who has been away to swear in Bob of Zim.
Iris & Clive have been cloned by ET's and are progammed to wind up the leadership and take pictures whenever possible.

The Chinese are going to take over every pub in Thanet and Plan to clone that Frank guy, they will then use the beer to solve the water problem as people won't know the difference.

I know its true because I read it in the Gazette.

Anonymous said...

Is that really true?

Anonymous said...

Is that Labour dude Dr Lady Man MP also known as Max?... WhY would there be anythink wrong wiv Labour takin money from this sponser geezer? iTS ok coz ez Labour, its only rong if the othver lot do it.

I luv that little chubby bird oowho stands up to the ugly bloke and the old geezer in wool shop.

Anonymous said...

Bertie, I'm glad someones finally made the connection between Foreness point and aquifers at Manston and our leader. My hubby has been sprouting on about it but not put finger to keys so that has saved him a job! (and piece of mind! that it hasnt been forgotten! poor old boy!)
You must be flatttered to keep having the chair of planning doing repeat performances - can it be that your blog is Thanet's joint (mustnt forget ECR!) premier out pouring of views about what is really going on in Thanet - other bloggers keep giving Bertie a plug - i do!

sue said...

Ken. That is very reassuring. I will look forward to the decision on the application with anticipation.

Anonymous said...

Dear Cllr Gregory, you were obviously put out at not being part of the Council's Team to visit China.

Out of curiosity, who paid for the visit?

Anonymous said...

Why do polictians have no sense of humour?

Anonymous said...

Dear Iris, I am sure if Ken wanted to go to China he could afford the ticket himself

Anonymous said...

What is a nanny state gutter snipe?

Anonymous said...

I believe Our Glorious Leader (Hence known as OGL)
assured us all at the time that the Chinese paid for the visit....
Exactly.

Ken Gregory said...

I did not want to go to china, and if i did I would have wanted to visit Tianaman Square.

Ken Gregory said...

Oh and who is Obi 1????????????

Ken Gregory said...

Oh and also that Chubby bird is really Ugly

Tony Beachcomber said...

Reading some of the comments on the China Gateway I think some of those veiws against should realy stick to building up a solid case against and stay focused. After all CGP have made a legitimate enquiry and TDC have given a legitimate response.

If the place does go ahead and the construction takes place it doesn't garuntee sucess.
For example in the seventies it was the import of cars through Ramsgate that was the big thing. In 1978 44,242 cars came in through Ramsgate along with 3,317 tones of steel, this was heralded as the future and a site was developed to store the cars. All it takes is a decision in a foreign boardroom and the whole thing could fall flat on its back.

Anonymous said...

The chubby bird, you know the councillor one who stood up to the brothers grim in the wool shop. I like her she has b*lls

Bertie Biggles said...

Sue, you are right and Michael and Richard have asked me to do this and have sent advice but need to 'sit with molly' on this as playing with the site last time almost wiped it out!

Tony, thanks for that background.Isn't it interesting how attitudes have changed since then, whilst the aquifer's water quality has got worse and could now be lost. You must remember though that Mowice lived down that neck of the woods in Palm Bay. I was always interested in how Chislet Way was renamed 'The Ridings'(a much 'smarter' address of course than a colliery village)?
People of 'influence' clearly!

Thanks for the plug,07.27.

The trip to China was linked with a SEEDA visit and was, according to The IOTG, paid for by Chinamex who have been hosting a rash of Councils to China in the past 18 months. I have copied a nice picture of everyone smiling for camera on an earlier strand!

23.12 is disguising his/her style but it sounds familiar and 'chaps and chapesses', let's not get rude and personal here on Strife.

Ken; OBE1 has been a label attached to Cllr Latchford on other blogs for some time but I like 'Woger' better. By the way, would you like me to remove your comment of 21.56 as it does not seem very gallant?

Bertie Biggles said...

Tony, was that car-park at Richborough that is now a 'wrecks lot' where the new cars were meant to be prepped after the sea journey? The orimulsion problem didn't help either but a good illustration of what could happen to Gateway in a few years time.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Bertie Biggles said...

23.19. Tut tut! A nice try on but however you wrap it up, your comment reinforced rudeness! Sorry to have to send it to the ether.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it refreshing to hear one of our erstwhile councillors, Cllr Ken Gregory, making the comment,"Oh and also that Chubby bird is really Ugly".

Says so much for the moral attitude of people who have been voted in to run Thanet on our behalf!

If that remark can be proved to be aimed at a particular person, as is suggested earlier in this blog, then I hope that we will soon be reading about Cllr Gregory's resignation!

That would be the honourable thing to do, however, a person of honour would not make such a comment in the first place!

Anonymous said...

I am quite amazed at Councillor Gregory's remark re: "ugly bird". I think we all know to whom he is referring - it is not only ungallant it is extremely rude and I think we should expect better from an elected councillor. Come to think of it Councillor Gregory is hardly an oil painting.

Anonymous said...

I think Iris is a good looking lady and I wish she was my wife because she is slim and never tells fibs

Anonymous said...

I don't think Bob Geldof is Labour and I doubt if Tracey Emin is either. Ken Gregory is a Tory councillor but he was for some time a Labour one. His remark, if it was made by him, is totally out of order. I hope the lady slighted by him takes him to the Standards Board to join his leader and deputy.

Anonymous said...

14:04 Have you only just found out the fact that Thanet Labour take people for fools.

Tony Beachcomber said...

Bertie, the Venezuelan Orimulsion experiment came after the imported cars left. You are right the site is now a used car lot.

The opposition to the Orimulsion experiment is another example of double standards in local government, even though the opposition was justified, its amazing how green conservatives can be in opposition but not in power.
The conservative support for Foreness Action Group was another example, but I must add our leader did a do a good job dealing with that one, reminded me a bit of a urban Che Guevara.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure both Bob Geldof and Tracey Emin are too busy to bother with Bertie's blog. How do you know they are Labour sponsors, anyway?

Anonymous said...

It has been found out that Labour party supporters are behind the scare mongering regarding the China Gate Way.

More is being found as you read this. Read the Gazette

Ask Tony!

Bertie Biggles said...

OK, we get the point but I am getting tired of repetitious puerile comments from a fellow Conservative supporter and it does the Conservative cause in Thanet great harm. I do not like taking down comments but have done so, 13.12;13.53;14.04;15.04;20.16; 21.09;21.33 and 21.55. If you have some sensible contribution to make here please get on and do so. In the mean time please be a good chap or chapesse and keep personal issues about BMI and perception or otherwise of beauty out of your comments.

You have come back as 21.39 and make an interesting point. Is opposition to Gateway, a party political issue? If you think that then you are mistaken. The point you fail to make is why you think Gateway is such a wonderful idea. Please feel free to persuade people reading this blog that it is by putting some sound reasons forward in support of it. I am sure other regular readers will reply in a courteous and balanced way to either agree or disagree.

Anonymous said...

You miss my point mate. Labour are not being up front about it. We know what is happening. And you may call yourself A Tory, but that means nothing. You must think people are thick.

Bertie Biggles said...

Thanks Tony, yet again, for the background.

I now wish to pick up on a point made by Ken last night. I am not really up to flying speed with these matters Ken, but you mentioned at 19.48 that regarding Phases 2 and 3 of CGPs plans for a China Gateway that 'they would have to go to GOSE (Government Office for The Southeast)for approval'. Would I be correct in saying that you seem to be assuming here that Phases 2 and 3 will be approved? I say this because my aviator's grasp of these matters is a little bit dodgy. I thought, obviously incorrectly, that GOSE would only need to approve of Phases 2 and 3 if and when, TDC approve any further applications that CGP might or might not make that are clearly outside The Thanet Plan?

I say this because the only issue at present before TDC is an application to put some industrial sheds up on Manston Business Park within an area designated for employment many years ago. If TDC, and as its Chair of Planning, you are already thinking of 'The Big Picture' being painted by CGP then why has CGPs application for Phase 1 not been sent back to them with a polite request to submit an application for the whole project? I detect here an inconsistency in approach and would be grateful if you or anyone can clarify this matter of procedure. If Councillors are being asked to make a decision with numerous and important ramifications for many years to come, they need to know is it Phase 1 they are allowing or is the whole project interconnected and interdependant?

Bertie Biggles said...

22.13, I am a Tory and like many Tory, Labour and other Cllrs who are trying to do their level best for Thanet, I have developed real concerns about how the leadership of this Council behaves on a number of issues.

It cannot be a good thing for democracy, when public consultation and involvement is forbidden at Site visits; when a very capable Chair of Planning is, in his own words, 'sacked'; when a donation is made to an MP and Thanet South Labour of £25,000; when TDC's Big Event is co-sponsored by a developer. All when an application to build the biggest Industrial Estate in Thanet and which is outside the local Thanet Plan is being considered by TDC at the highest level. I am talking of events as far back as March 2007,long before the rest of us were even aware of who Chinamex were and who CGP were.

These matters have nothing to do with a 'held party political position' or petty party bickering about BMI or beauty but relate to the very serious business of what is best for Thanet and its people for many years to come. We rely on all our Councillors to get these issues right and 'party' does not come into it.

Anonymous said...

It is not Labour party supporters that are scaremongering about China Gateway, it is right thinking individuals of all parties who do not see the need for this monster to be built at Manston, for the Good of Wills and his cronies, and the cynical bunch on TDC who seem to favour anything put forward by wealthy developers.

I will leave it to your imagination, and the likely scandal as to why they are so receptive!

Sheila Trouble said...

Bertie, it is such a chore scrolling through irrelevant postings! So "he doesn't like her" and "she doesn't like him" - who cares!
I think everyone, by now, has lost the plot.
I was interested to read (pages and pages ago!) Ken Gregory's comment that the Phases 2 and 3 of the Chinamex (thanks to CGP) project would have to go before GOSE. So that's OK then? Perhaps everyone has forgotten that GOSE is an unelected, unanswerable (jobs for the boys?) body imposed upon us by government.
Personally, I would rather decisions of this nature - that will effect the lives (quite seriously) of those living nearby - should be considered and decided by our elected representatives who (allegedly) are there to speak for us and ensure our safety and well-being, which includes our quality of life and, presumably, securing the value of our properties! (Actually, I understand that property value has no bearing whatsoever upon the decision of a planning application - if you lose out that's tough!)

Bertie Biggles said...

Sheila, I agree with you and have had a clean out tonight! In order to let people comment freely, I try not to send mischievous comments to the 'ether'; its a tricky balance when some are determined to distract and obfuscate from serious issues. It makes me wonder what their angle is.

The matter of referral to GOSE, as far as I can acertain, is only an option when and if TDC approves of Phases 2 & 3 of Gateway. Any approval outside the Thanet Plan needs approval by GOSE. If TDC decide gainst approving those Phases, GOSE is not involved.

Anonymous said...

So, 21.39 share with us your inside information that the Labour Party members are behind this scaremongering and what has the Gazette got that we don't yet know. I for one would love to know. The anti-campaign is totally non-political and to my knowledge, Laura Sandys, Tory candidate for S. Thanet, is concerned about certain aspects of this development as, in fact, is Roger Gale. Hardly Labour those two. Bertie has said he's a Tory and to my certain knowledge only one paid up Labour person is in any way involved with the group who, you claim, are scaremongering. No Labour councillors have made any comments for or against as to do so would rule out their involvement either at the Planning Committee stage or if the whole thing came to a full council debate.

Anonymous said...

It seems that the only Councillor making comments on planning issues, is the Planning Chairman!!

Does he now bar himself?

Or does he have to ask permission of the venerable Mo to do anything?

After his comments on Fat/Ugly birds, we know he does not have the honour to stand down himself!!

Anonymous said...

Let's see. A 70 acre site that will produce something or other for somebody or other that will mean at least a thousand HGV's a day thundering down the 299.
Don't care who is scare mongering,
WE DON'T WANT IT!