Timeline

31 January 1947
‘A Flying Boat Airport’
Cliffe was considered as a location for the new proposed airport by the Pakenham Committee (1946/47) (Times, 31 January 1947, p2), but in 1949 the Government confirmed its rejection of the site.

7 November 1965
‘Isle of Sheppey’
It’s a plan to develop a 6-runway airport on the Isle of Sheppey to replace Heathrow (Observer, 7 Nov 1965, p11).

27 February 1968
Maplin Sands Airport
John Howard and Company (engineers) announces a scheme for an airport on Maplin Sands with four runways. Privately financed, it would be handed over to the Government as a going concern. The Govt would then pay back the costs ‘over a period to be agreed’ when the airport started to earn money. (Times, 27 February 1968, p3)

9 August 1972
‘The World’s First Environmental Airport’
Government announces plan to develop site ‘C’ creating “the world’s first environmental airport” at Maplin Sands.

18 July 1974
Government Abandons Maplin
Maplin should be abandoned citing cost factors and lack of need on the basis of air traffic forecasts. Expansion of Stansted recommended.

22 April 1989
Marinair Scheme To Build An Offshore Airport On An Artificial Island Near Maplin Sands
Ambitious proposal for new airport built on an artificial island in the Thames estuary are being examined as a possible solution to air traffic congestion in London and the south east. The multi-billion pound project known as Marinair, entails the construction of four international runways on a 12 square-miles site near Whitstable off the Kent coast. (The Times)

20 September 2002
The Rejection Of Marinair Scheme
Press reports of Mayor of London Ken Livingstone considering and then rejecting estuarial airport proposal (Planning, 20 September 2002, p1).

September 2008
Suggestion of ‘Boris Island’
London Mayoral election campaign in which Boris Johnson raises the option of siting an airport in the estuary.

August 2009
Oakervee Report Delivered To The Mayor Of London
According to Douglas Oakervee, the engineer who masterminded Hong Kong’s International airport island in the 1990′s, a new airport proposed for the Thames estuary could be built in less than 10 years.

16 October 2009
Thames Estuary Steering Group Established By The Mayor Of London
Suggested by Douglas Oakervee, the working group it aimed to create the framework in which decisions can be made about the most appropriate investments and funding decisions reached.
It also intended to bring together interested parties to debate the issues and consider research that needed to be undertaken to provide a “holistic solution to energy, flood management, transport and ecological needs as well as regeneration”.

23 October 2009
Terry Farrell appointed to Estuary Airport Group
Terry Farrell has been appointed to the Thames Estuary Airport Steering Group in a bid to realise Mayor of London Boris Johnson’s dream of a floating airport. (Architect’s Journal 23 October 2009)

26 March 2010
Existing Airports Extension Vs New Airport
High Court judgment rules that a further review of the policy issues should take place before agreement is given to a third runway at Heathrow.

20 May 2010
Airports Extension Ruled Out
New Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition Government issues a full list of agreed policies. New runways at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted are ruled out.

July 2010
Philip Hammond “no new airport”
Secretary of State for Transport states that the Government has no plans to build an airport in the estuary.

January 2011
Boris Johnson’s aviation report part 1
The Mayor publishes part 1 of a report making the case for a new airport in the south-east.
(http://www.london.gov.uk/sites/default/files/AnewairportforLondon.pdf)

1 August 2011
Foster and Partners reveals Thames Estuary airport plans
Foster + Partners self-funded a £100 000 study by Halcrow infrastructure specialists to show how a major transport hub could be built in the estuary.

12 October 2011
Farrell attacks Foster’s plan
Terry Farrell has critisized Norman Foster’s proposed new airport in the Thames estuary, instead advocating a new rail hub connecting existing airports on a site he is masterplanning in west London.

2 November 2011
‘Thames Hub’ Report
Prepared by Foster & Partners/Halcrow/Volterra Consulting the report recommends the construction of a new airport on the Isle of Grain on the Hoo Pensinsula as one element of a wider programme of infrastructure developments.

18 November 2011
David Cameron For Thames Estuary Airport

21 November 2011
Boris Johnson’s Aviation Report Part 2
The Mayor publishes part 2 of a report making the case for additional airport capacity in the south-east. A further report considering possible locations for the new airport is due to be published in 2012.

28 November 2011
Lecture at Oxford University
In a lecture/presentation given at Oxford University, Lord Foster provides additional detail about the Thames Hub proposal.

29 November 2011
Autumn Statement: Foster Welcomes Government Commitment On Aviation Capacity
Chancellor, George Osborne said the government would explore all the options  for maintaining the UK’s  aviation hub status, with the exception of the third runway at Heathrow.

26 December 2011
Campaign Launched Against Thames Estuary Airport

January 2012
Civil Aviation Authority Publishes Report On Aviation Policy
The estuary airport option is not specifically mentioned, but the need for additional airport capacity in South East England is stated.

18 January 2012
Thames Estuary Airport Plans To Be Examined
The government is planning to launch a consultation study in March into the new airport proposal.

19 March 2012
David Cameron: Pros and Cons to be examined

21 March 2012
Budget 2012
Emphasis on aviation capacity in the budget 2012 as a way to prepare the public for a new airport growth plan.

31 March 2012
A Warning On Environmental Effect Of Thames Estuary Airport
An art exhibition put together by nine artists to warn about potential environmental effects the new airport could have on the country.

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