To digress slightly SMA was set up to try and get Manston reopened, however it wasn't set up to reopen Manston at any cost and that's what seems to have happened, and whether the recent actions will change this only time will tell.
Well what has happened with the Facebook page?
By Beau Webber | 2016-08-18 The Chairman, Officers and all but one of the Committee of the Save Manston Airport association have had their Facebook admin powers removed and most have been removed from the Save Manston Airport site.
We have confirmed that all the independent moderators (who act to keep the SMA page “clean”) have had their moderating powers removed.
The “founder” of SMA (2014) Dan Light, and the then Chairman Keith Churcher voluntarily relinquished the group (then ~3,000 members) to the management of an SMA Committee in 2014, led by Chairman Dr. Beau Webber. The legitimacy of the Committee was further established by an SGM in 2014 and an AGM in early 2016.
We have evidence that Dan Light has recently assumed dictatorial powers on the SMA site (now ~10,200 members), adding and deleting posts and members without discussion, and has now removed the Admin and other powers of the Chairman, Officers and all but one Member of the Committee of Management on the Facebook site, and has blocked the Chairman and others from access to the site. The actions taken by the Founder do not affect the powers of the Chairman, Officers or other Committee members within the governance of the Save Manston Airport ASSOCIATION.
So it looks like Keith Churcher and Dan Light have taken over the Facebook page however it seems the Real World Committee have decided that they will have to start again on FB. Now it makes you wonder which group will win out and whether either have any friends outside of their narrow world.
One of the main issues with the SMA campaign was the personal abuse directed at anyone who didn't share their viewpoint. Whether Keith and Dan can control the alleged 10000 members is also another moot point. They have so alienated TDC that it is doubtful TDC will ever support them especially if they continue to support a Freight Hub as envisaged by Tony Freudmann and Niall Lawlor. It is clear from the Pre-Consultations that Neither gentlemen want anything to do with TDC the local authority that controls the area of Manston.
Taken from replies given at the pre-consultation
Statement from Dan Light
Those who have been here for a long time will know that I was the original founder of the Save Manston Airport Facebook group way back at the start of 2014. To new members, welcome.
Today there have been several changes made to the Save Manston Airport Facebook group. This morning I removed all admin, moderators and committee when it became apparent that an alternative secret Facebook group had been set up without my knowledge. I took this decision for the good of the group as I did not like the direction my group was taking. Many of you have mentally switched off, and have felt you cannot discuss certain things for fear of getting shouted down; the campaign was starting to lose a lot of puff, there were no guts left in it left in it, and people were becoming disillusioned.
I have listened to many of you who have messaged me and spoken to me, and took this decision, to steer this whole thing back on track; at the moment we need people on our side. Unfortunately we alienated a lot of important people who could actually work with us and help us. I was not of the same opinion as others on the committee, and after countless talks falling on deaf ears this was another reason to make drastic changes. I was on my own, alienated, I wasn't listened to and when I tried to put forward my concerns I was talked down to like a child. My opinion as founder didn't matter it seems, and I also found, whilst at work, things were going on behind my back on which I had no say, which really hurt the campaign badly. I could not trust the people who were supposed to be working with me, not against me.
I understand this may come as a shock to some of you, and if you want to leave due to the changes that is your choice and I accept that. If you want to carry on being a member of John Pritchard and Beau Webber's formal Association please do so here https://www.facebook.com/groups/savemanstonairportassociation/
They are governed by a formal constitution. I feel that on a Facebook group there is no need for that and that is one of the reasons why the group lost its appeal. They are welcome to carry on with their formal campaign and I formally relinquish anything to do with it.
In the meantime this campaign will once again grow legs and get back to basics like it was at the very start. We will allow differing opinions in the group about RiverOak and also about other investors; no one will be shouted down for their views. The people now administering the group (not a committee) want to make a change for the better and carry this on in the way it was intended right from the start. There will be rules but more about that later.
I hope you do decide stay and carry on the fight with us; if you feel you can't you are more than welcome to leave and I will respect that. Let’s move forwards in saving Manston Airport.