Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Plane Tales from the bookshop, the Manston Airport Endgame, The Throw-up or Hoosh and the blog problems.

I have been interested in crafts and engineering for as long as I can remember, I was – in that other country that goes under the name of “the past – the small boy who took the clock apart. Not as it were looking for the tick but to see how it worked.

This means that my bookshop has a fairly extensive craft section covering most aspects of most crafts from the social history through to “how to do it books” but. What does this mean? An example – if you want to know how our society developed through charcoal burning and early iron smelting, I will probably have a book on it. On the other hand if you want to make your own charcoal, smelt your own iron ore and learn to be a blacksmith then I can probably provide the literature. 

I am not obsessive about this in a bookshop with about a 1000 shelves perhaps 40 are devoted to craft.


Anyway I was put in mind of misunderstandings about planes and particularly Manston today by the customer who wanted to look at a book in my section of rarer books. He was under the misapprehension that various editions of British Planemakers from 1700 were aviation books.


As you can see from the pictures of the books surrounding the plane books, were. What? Stanley not Wright and I had to do some mental gear changing to deal with this one.


We do have a fairly substantial aviation section but there are surprisingly few aviation books that go in the rare book section, perhaps the print runs are about the same with most aviation books, but for the most part even early aviation books are not rare books.

Now to some people this may seem like, I am delving into anorak land, but you and I are. What? A long time dead. Perhaps. This may have something to do with the enthusiasm of the Manston supporters who are. What? Plane spotters perhaps.

I take the view that someone who has reached the third decade of life without developing any serious interests to the point of having a collection of books about their interest – apart from the universal interests of sex and death which to some extent don’t count – is going to be a person that I will find. What? Dull perhaps.

Anyway on the Manston front the following post has been doing the rounds on the SMA FaceBook page, I have published it here small and in red; assuming that everyone interested has already read it anyway:

A post from this morning from R. John Pritchard that I think needs reading.
I had a long chat with an experienced TDC Councillor this morning about Manston and RiverOak. This Councillor speaks with the benefit of having had years of experience in the City of London and feels sure that everything would have gone smoothly if RO had registered a company in the City of London and put it in funds. My informant believes that may have been a fatal mistake, and that it is what firms like Pfizers, Roche, etc., have always done when investing in the UK.
All of this, the Councillor feels, has taken far too long, Councillors are no longer reading stuff that comes in on Manston, and that the steam is just going to fizzle out of the campaign. On the doorstep, people are responding to questions on things like street lamps, bins collections, above all immigration issues and NHS services, job opportunities, but Manston is now regarded as yesterday's issue and people are fed up with it.
The Councillor suggests that only a miracle or perhaps central Government intervention or some dramatic development affecting the existing owners will save the situation now.
Point-scoring in relation to different pro-Manston groups, I am informed by every Councillor I speak to, is regarded as totally counter-productive and something to be resisted absolutely and with great determination. They tell me that the great schism was perhaps fatal to our campaign, but that at the very least we mustn't keep on sniping about each other's campaigns.
I do not share all of this assessment but there is much there to take to heart.
If the Councillor whom I spoke to this morning is right, RiverOak really need to listen, not dictate. If RiverOak are right, the converse is true. Both sides need to cite their authorities, and to go the extra mile to listen so that in their attempts to find common ground, policies and decisions taken jointly are evidence-based.
We know that RiverOak is prepared to put the Council in funds to secure INDEPENDENT legal advice of the highest calibre that RiverOak believes will convince Councillors and persuade Officers that in times of financial stringency, Councils up and down the country are successfully obtaining Compulsory Purchase Orders in partnership with private investors in the manner that RiverOak is convinced Thanet District Council should appreciate is now regarded as best practice. We know that ministers and officials in London are reported as having despaired at the advice Thanet District Council officers are giving to our Councillors in relation to that process.
We also believe that Thanet District Council officers really do need to share with RiverOak the advice that they've received from their own legal advisers (because there has been little or NO direct contact from the Council's legal team about what external advice they've received). Without sitting down at a conference table and working out an agreement, we are going to lose our struggle to preserve OUR airport.
God help those who fail to rise to that challenge. This campaign still has overwhelming public support. The negativity around is a product of despair, not a change in the outcome that the overwhelming majority of people who live and work in Thanet truly want.

I can perhaps add to this that talking to some of the people involved, two major factors in making the situation impossible to progress have been that the RiverOak site use has been too similar to the Discovery Parks site use for Manston to make a cpo in any sense viable and that RiverOak have set up a “Delaware LLC” to deal with TDC. I guess this is something like an American district administration starting dealing with a small British finance company that suddenly finds that they are dealing with a small British Virgin Islands finance company. I am not going to labour the point here, google “Delaware LLC”  if you don’t follow what I am talking about.


Back to Mill for me another confusion that occasionally occurs in the craft world of bookselling is the one between the mill and the mill.


Earlier today I was collating a 1930 first edition of D. W. Pinkney’s book “Rope Spinning” all 96 pages of it, which culminates in the reader developing the ability to launch a lasso with their foot, when I noticed it has a chapter entitled, The Throw-up or Hoosh.



So on to moving this blog. An interesting thing about paranoia is that occasionally someone may actually be following you. Coincidence? Perhaps.


Recently the council have bought the large shop opposite mine, which is in an otherwise fully let shopping parade, and have very recently granted themselves planning permission to turn it into social housing. Then in the last week I have had two letters from the council’s solicitor threatening me with prison if I didn’t remove items from thanetonline blog. It has dawned on me that the council may not like me very much and it further occurred to me that if the council backed by a high court judge were to ask Google to remove thanetonline blog then they probably would.


Personally it wouldn’t worry me much but over past few years it has over a million and a half visits and many of these relate to local history posts there, so I have moved my blog here.


I will endeavour to sort out links and so on here as I get the time, I will also try restoring anonymous comment, although I will leave comment moderation on.          

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

So how much are TDC spending on lawyers this year? In the list of invoices over £250 which you can find on the TDC web site is a payment of £250,000 to a Sussex based legal company. If they have to spend this money cant they find a more local company? i wait to see the invoice for the DIP.

Purple Om said...

Hi Michael like your new/old blog its much better for me as I can write under my own name :)
As for Manston, I have also seen a few comments that are a little doom gloom. Also I have also seen a Neathercourt Cllr thinking that a RiverOak valuation of £4M for the Manston site is the real value for 720 acres of brownfield land in east Kent when all you have to do is look on Rightmove and see that the land value is 60-70x times that. Or is there something I am missing that makes that land worth less than farmland even though its classed as brownfield land by TDC in their proposal for houses on the northern part of the site? Do we really have to put up with such stupidity from our Cllrs or is there someone we can complain to?

Still Even More Bemused Of Birchington said...

Purple Om, you can complain at the ballot box next May.

Anonymous said...

He can't SEMBOB as (almost) all the candidates support the CPO.

No choice at all. And given a CPO is unlikely and downright idiotic hardly inspiring candidates is it?

Purple Om said...

Senbob

The Cllr I will vote for is already singing from the same song sheet as me.

Still Even More Bemused Of Birchington said...

Then you have no complaints Purple Om. Just persuade your singing candidate to persuade the Nethercourt candidate to sing from the same hymn sheet, assuming they both become councillors. I use the word candidate because they won't be councillors unless and until elected.

Anonymous said...

What's his / her name Purple Om? I need to know who not to vote for.

Anonymous said...

PurpleOm your 19:20,

But singing out of tune.

your 12:10,

The answer is yes, you are missing something fast immer so.

Anonymous said...

I'm voting for Ruth Bailey. Undoubtedly Ramsgate's best hope.

Anonymous said...

the ex-airport worker? the CPO again?

Anonymous said...

Quite why Ruth Bailey feels the need to stand for election is quite baffling. You already have at least three candidates who have the same view as she has on the airport. All she can possibly do is to take votes from those candidates. I have long suspected that most of the people involved in the pro-airport campaign are shameless self-publicists who love the limelight. Ruth's decision to stand for election does appear to be driven by ego.

Anonymous said...

Whereas you, anon 16:11 are a shy retiring soul and humble with it.

Anonymous said...

I wish Ruth best of luck, but I strongly suspect that she'll receive almost as few votes as Louise Oldfield did when she stood for election (at least the Manston cpo has more support than the anti-Tesco lot).

Anonymous said...

Is the SMA support waning?

They wanted link arms round the whole airport to show support, today they wanted to line the road up to TG Aviation. Looking at the 1000s they wanted to turn up today to great the American 'saviours', they will have trouble getting a chain around their favourite tree..... !!

Anonymous said...

Waning or not, there's still more people in Thanet supporting SMA than any other local protest group.

As for Ruth and Louise (just like Tony Flaig and Matt Brown) before them, they should be applauded for at least trying. Far better than anonymous commentators telling us their cllr supports them without naming the said cllr, or (worse still) those who tell us it's time for changes but won't even tell us who to vote for instead.

Anonymous said...

I was up there today and I reckon there were only around 100 people. I recognised some of them as antis. Many of those present weren't locals. It was embarrassing. Yesterday, they had promised a big announcement. That's why I went along. But when I got there they told me that the announcement was being saved for the big day. I asked what or when this big day was and nobody seemed to know. I've really had enough of this campaign. It's being run by a bunch of egotists who don't keep us informed. The really disappointing thing was that the council wasn't represented. None of the senior councillors attended. I don't think Riveroak were impressed.

Anonymous said...

I was there too, and if any of them were antis they certainly kept very quiet about it! I estimate around 350 people today.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad I wasn't there, the video of them cheering and playing of the Star Spangled Banner was cringeworthly

Anonymous said...

Actually, there are some videos. The Manston Pickle lot have got them but they haven't put them on the public site yet. There can't have been more than 100 there. For me, the really cringeworthy bit is where one of the leading lights of the campaign is standing in front of George Yerall as if he's begging for a job. I hope this isn't what the campaign was all about.

Anonymous said...

I still struggle to see how a CPO can ever happen....

Dreamland and a CPO with guaranteed funding from the lottery fund etc

In Dover there is a CPO over an old redundant tower block, and there are companies signed up to build there like Cineworld and M&S

But at Manston you have a group wanting to but it with just ideas of what they might want to do - do they have any guarantees that anyone wants to take freight there or anyone wants to use it as a breakers yard. I just can't see how the Secretary of State can force the sale to someone based on just speculation??

Anonymous said...

The CPO will do more than that. According to pro-airport campaigners it will solve air-space capacity issues in South-East England, solve all of Thanet's economic problems and eliminate child poverty. If it were only possible for it to cure Ebola it would be a shoe-in.

Anonymous said...

Even the BBC estimate about 300 people, but then again the anti-Manston nimbys never have been very good with figures.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-kent-29863916

Anonymous said...

If you visit the SMA Facebook page you will see postings from members of the group slagging off the BBC for their coverage of yesterday's meeting. It would seem that the BBC is only a reliable source of information when it fits with SMA's view of the world.

Anonymous said...

It is interesting to hear posters describing those who oppose the CPO as being anti-Manston and being NIMBYs. As a recent vote showed, a majority of the ruling Labour Group opposes the CPO. In addition, there are numerous Tory and independent councillors who are opposed to the CPO. These people are not necessarily against the airport. They just don't think that the CPO is a sensible way forward. As for being NIMBY's, surely it is the pro-airport groups who have been running around trying to drum up support by scaremongering about houses being built at Manston. They are archetypal NIMBYs trying to use any means, fair or foul, to prevent housing from being built.

Anonymous said...

1 November 2014 18:36:00, Can you explain why "antis" attended the a "pro" meeting and then kept quiet? Because it's beyond my understanding (and before anyone accuses me of being pro-Manston I really couldn't care either way as I live in Folkestone).

Anonymous said...

Who are these "numerous" Tory cllrs who oppose the cpo? I can't think of anyone at TDC, but if it's true then perhaps I should vote for UKIP (or Ruth!).

Anonymous said...

Why would you assume that all Tory councillors are in favour of a CPO? We know that the headbangers will vote for it, even if it doesn't do what it says on the tin. But there are a number of councillors with brains who have thought about this, researched it and can see the pitfalls (of which there are many). When you speak to these individuals they are quite open about their opinions. However, if you don't speak to them you won't know what they think because they aren't wasting their lives blathering about it on social media. I'm not going to give you names of councillors so that you can send them hate mail and the like. If you want to know how they would vote, ask. But, you'll be wasting your time. Riveroak hasn't met TDC's criteria and so they aren't going to be the indemnity partner. There won't be a vote.

Anonymous said...

As I suspected, you can't name any anti-cpo Tory cllrs. Point made.

Anonymous said...

As I said, I am not prepared to name anybody, only for you and your gang to harass them. Believe what you like, but you should not assume that everybody agrees with you unless you have asked them.