Frankly when Discovery Parks bought the Manston Airport site it was a major game changer, up to this point TDC were pursuing a cpo based on perceived public opinion as the result of a petition that hadn’t been properly validated and was signed before Discovery Parks announced that they had plans for the site, which would provide thousands of jobs for local people.
A very important factor here is that Thanet taxpayers money is being spent by Thanet council to investigate whether the council can remove a major brownfield site owner with a proven track record for producing UK jobs, in favour of a foreign company with no track record of having produced any UK jobs, of for that matter any aviation jobs. That they are doing this without any sort of public consultation seems ludicrous.
Make no mistake here I am not anti airport, when a plane flies over I am first out the door with a camera, but much more important than this is local jobs and when the council is engaged in hostile action towards a company with a good track record of investing in the UK and providing jobs, that says it intends to invest £1bn in a site it has just purchased in Thanet, with the intention of providing local jobs, then I become concerned.
A good parallel to this on a very small scale is, I think, the council buying up town centre shops in active and fully let parts of the local towns, with the intention of turning them into social housing.
Anyway here is the Isle of Thanet Gazette article about how much the council are spending on the cpo http://www.thanetgazette.co.uk/pound-70k-earmarked-CPO-studies/story-23003354-detail/story.html
Part of the problem is that TDC are not really spending this money on a cpo, not even on discovering if a cpo is viable, they haven’t even really reached the point of considering whether an airport would have economically beneficial, environmentally viable, or socially beneficial. This doesn’t come until the draft local plan is published around Christmas, once they have this they can consider these things.
What they are doing is basically looking for a partner to fund them so the can chuck out the existing owners and their plans for local job, should the whim take them sometime in the future.
Anyway as far as I can see we only have another couple of weeks of this nonsense.
This is a quote from TDC cabinet member David Green: “TDC at present are not considering the airport against economic, environmental and social criteria, that will come with the publication of the preferred options draft of the Local Plan, expected in Dec, and the subsequent consultation in the new year. They are not even considering the merits or otherwise of a CPO as that could only happen if TDC had a commercial partner willing to take all the financial risk and would depend upon the relative merits of the business case and many other factors. What we are doing is a soft market test under EU contract legislation as to whether such a partner exists. I have to tell you that at the moment none of the Councils prospective partners have forfilled the Councils requirements for such a partner. We have decided that this process must end with the Cabinet meeting on the 13th Nov. TDC Officers recommendations will be in the Cabinet papers for that meeting. It is possible that any decision we make could be called into Scrutiny Committee, who could ask Cabinet to think again. We will ensure that this process happens as rapidly as Councils procedures allow.”
Business wise I shall be pleased when the uncertainty about the airport is over, the airport itself has never done very much either way for business as there has never been enough activity there, but the uncertainty about its future has been very damaging.
On to Flat’s discussions about books, as you see he has chosen one today about sweets and sweetshops, he has gone off to look in the sweet jar and I can’t get any sort of comment from him, so will do my best.
The two Thanet sweetshops that stick in my mind are the one where Pete’s Fish Factory is now, where you could watch Ramsgate Rock being pulled and the one overlooking Margate beach that closed about seven years ago.
Anyway I suppose that one thing that all collectors of book series are on the lookout for is a series that is going to become collectable in terms of rare editions and so on, while all of the books in series are selling for pretty much one price an no one much knows what’s scarce. All the Shire books we have in stock are priced at £1.99 or less.
I think it is possible the Shire publications fall into this bracket, anyway I bought some more today, bottom left of the pile of books in the store waiting to be priced.
I have been gathering them up from around the shop with the view of putting them all together somewhere, viewed spine on our entire stock of Shire books doesn’t look very impressive and out in the various bookshop sections they pertain to, they vanish between larger books and get damaged.
Lay a few out and they look more interesting.
Anyway today I made a new bookcase in the bookshop to take them and a few other series.
The canal Shire book is a good example to explain what I am talking about, it was in the canal book section in the bookshop. To be honest our canal book section isn’t much use if you are planning a narrow boat holiday, you would need to look on the internet for that sort of information. My objective in the bookshop is to try to have books where the content either won’t be on the internet, or will only be available there more expensively than buying the book off the shelf.
Just a further point while I am on the subject of the internet, if you go to buy a secondhand book from a site like Amazon, you will find that a lot of the cheaper ones used to belong to public libraries. If you click on the picture of the books in the canal section to expand it you will see the tell tale signs of an ex-library book, top left with the accession number selotaped to the spine.
The main thing to check if you buy an ex-library book is that it has the proper cancellation stamp on it, the Kent libraries one is the black round one, if not it is probably stolen.
The rule is something like this, a fine condition first edition of a specialist canal book about the history of an individual canal is going to cost about £10, with a reprint costing about £6. Take the fine first edition, write your name in it and it becomes worth about £6, clip the price off and it becomes worth about £7, lose the dust jacket and it becomes worth about £5, a cancelled ex-library copy with no jacket being worth about £2 to £3 and an uncancelled one being worth nothing at all.
Finally half term at the moment and my children are old enough to do their own cooking producing some unusual items in preparation.