Thanet Parkway station plans on display for fourth time

Thanet Parkway station - artist's impression Image copyright Kent County Council
Image caption Plans for the new station first went on display in 2015

A new public consultation is to be held over a planned railway station in Kent after the local council delayed its development.

Kent County Council (KCC) said it would not be writing a "blank cheque" for the £34m Thanet Parkway station at Cliffsend near Manston Airport.

The latest public consultation will be the fourth to be carried out since the plans were first displayed in 2015.

Opposition councillors have questioned the need for a new station.

They have also raised concerns over the escalating cost, environmental impact and overcrowding.

The station near Cliffsend would have two unstaffed platforms, a car park and a road connection to the A256 and A299.

KCC's cabinet had been expected to underwrite £17.8m for the scheme, the Local Democracy Reporting Service said.

Image copyright Kent County Council
Image caption A four-week consultation is being held during December

The Conservative council's new leader Roger Gough said he wanted to "honour" the concerns raised by its members.

"We are not simply writing a blank cheque," he said.

Rob Bird, the Lib Dem opposition leader, said: "I think the council need to demonstrate that this new station will enhance employment prospects in North Thanet and North Dover."

A decision is expected to be made by the county council's cabinet at the end of January, following the four-week public consultation.

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