This is an HTML version of an attachment to the Freedom of Information request 'Manston Enterprise Zone'.



 
 
Discovery Park Enterprise Zone 
Business Case – Consideration of Enterprise Zone asks relating to 
incentives or extensions  
 
 
Purpose 
  The Business Case is used to obtain commitment and approval by senior management within 
the Department for proposals which have either funding requests or future cost implications.  
  All such decisions need to be backed by a robust Business Case. However, the amount of 
work and detail put in to a Business Case should be proportionate to the scale of the project 
or programme, and the expenditure involved. 
 
Notes  
  Business Case will be assessed on a case by case basis. Inviting and assessing business 
cases does provide any commitment that a proposal will be successful. 
  Business cases should be submitted no later than Friday 24th October.  Enterprise Zones 
should work with their EZ lead in DCLG to develop the case.  
  Only those Enterprise Zones that made a formal request for a change to their Zone through 
their LEPs Strategic Economic Plan, may submit a case at this point. Cases should be for 
changes to the incentives on existing sites (i.e. applying to have an Enhanced Capital 
Allowance instead of a Business Rates Discount) or for extensions to the geography of Zones. 
Cases for extensions to the timescales for incentives or for removal of reduction of existing 
sites will not be considered. 
  Cases should be submitted by the Local Enterprise Partnership on behalf of their Enterprise 
Zone. 
  Cases should be submitted to xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx@xxxxxxxxxxx.xxx.xxx.xx 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
FULL BUSINESS CASE OUTLINE 
Proposal name  
Discovery Park: Proposal for extension of Enterprise Zone to include 
Manston.  
Context and strategic case 
Rationale for 
1.1. Introduction 
government 
This proposal sets out the case for the extension of the existing Discovery 
intervention 
Park Enterprise Zone at Sandwich, Kent to include the Manston Airport site 
 
and the adjacent Manston Business Park and China Gateway sites 
(collectively referred to in this proposal as ‘Manston’), helping to unlock the 
potential of coastal East Kent by creating over 1,800 net additional jobs and 
bring forward around 100,000 sq. m of net additional floorspace by 2037/38.  
Combined, Discovery Park and Manston form a major commercial growth 
location, with Discovery Park’s successful focus on a knowledge-led hub for 
life science and related businesses complementing Manston’s 
manufacturing, distribution, environmental technology and aviation-related 
potential.  
Both sites also supplement growth at neighbouring and complementary sites, 
such as the environmental technologies-focused Betteshanger Sustainable 
Park, which will bring forward an additional 30,000 sq. m of commercial 
floorspace, with a new Green Technologies Incubation Hub opening in 2016. 
Growth at Discovery Park and Manston will also support the revival of the 
East Kent coast, building on much improved road and rail infrastructure. 
However, earlier this year, East Kent faced a significant economic challenge 
following the decision to close Manston as an operational airport. 
Recognising the need for action to support future employment growth at 
Manston and build on the success of Discovery Park, the South East LEP’s 
Strategic Economic Plan proposed a Discovery Park and Manston Growth 
Deal. This sought to take a more co-ordinated approach to the development 
of opportunities in the area, and recommended the extension of the 
Discovery Park Enterprise Zone to incorporate Manston.  
Already, Discovery Park has demonstrated how Enterprise Zone status, 
linked with an integrated business support and infrastructure package, can 
unlock jobs and growth in the wake of economic change. We seek to extend 
this success to Manston, creating a powerful growth hub at the centre of the 
East Kent economy.  
 
1.2. 
The existing Enterprise Zone at Discovery Park 
The existing Discovery Park Enterprise Zone is an 89 hectare site located to 
the north of Sandwich. For many years, the site was a major pharmaceutical 
and research and development centre owned by Pfizer, with an extensive 
stock of high quality scientific R&D facilities. Following Pfizer’s decision to 
exit the site in 2011 with the loss of over 1,750 jobs, Discovery Park was 
designated as an Enterprise Zone. The following year, the site was sold to 
Discovery Park Ltd for mixed use development, including significant scientific 
R&D occupiers. The Enterprise Zone offers five-year business rate discounts 
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and businesses on the site also benefit from access to interest-free loans 
from the Regional Growth Fund-backed Expansion East Kent programme.  
Discovery Park Enterprise Zone has been highly successful. At the end of 
2011, only one company (Pfizer) was located on the site, employing 450 
people – 800 having been made redundant. Today, 97 companies operate 
from the site, with a further 11 firms currently in the process of locating onto 
the site. At present, 1,900 people are directly employed at Discovery Park, 
and the number is expected to rise to 2,500 as the number of companies 
reaches 108 in the coming weeks. 
Planning status 
Dover District Council adopted a Local Development Order for the site in 
March 2013, with the current draft master plan envisaging the creation of 
3,000 jobs by 2017 in scientific R&D, manufacturing and energy, with 
associated residential, retail and leisure uses.  
Alongside the Local Development Order, Dover District Council has 
maintained a very positive approach to growth at Discovery Park through the 
planning process. In particular, the Council has granted consent for:  
a)  A foodstore and associated development (application DOV/13/00783); 
and 
b)  The redevelopment of the site to include demolition, change of use, 
provision of new commercial uses and associated site preparation and 
infrastructure works (application DOV/14/00058) 
The granting of consent to both of these applications will ensure the 
comprehensive, sustainable development of Discovery Park in addition to the 
existing buildings inherited from Pfizer, and will ensure that the positive 
momentum built up since Enterprise Zone designation was granted is 
maintained. 
 
1.3. 
The proposed extension to Manston 
The proposed extension to Manston encompasses three sites to the north of 
the existing Zone: Manston Airport, Manston Business Park and the ‘China 
Gateway’ site. All three sites are contiguous and were originally part of the 
RAF Manston aerodrome. 
Manston Airport closed as an operational airport in May 2014 with the direct 
loss of 150 jobs. The total site covers approximately 160 hectares. Following 
the closure of the airport, Thanet District Council is considering the potential 
for compulsory purchase of the site to ensure its continued operation as an 
airport (and which would of course also benefit from Enterprise Zone 
designation). In September 2014, the site was acquired by a consortium 
including two of the owners of Discovery Park. Based on experience at 
Discovery Park and in regenerating the Wynyard Park site in the north of 
England, the new owners propose to deliver a mixed use development on the 
Airport site.  
The Airport site retains the potential for aviation use and remains a suitable 
location for aviation-related commercial activity alongside manufacturing, 
distribution and environmental technology uses.  
Manston Business Park is a 16 hectare site adjacent to Manston Airport. It 
currently accommodates 27 businesses and 970 jobs and is owned by East 
Kent Opportunities LLP, a joint venture between Kent County Council and 
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Thanet District Council. Complementary to the opportunities at the Airport 
site, Manston Business Park is suitable for engineering, storage and 
distribution uses, with a number of start-up units currently under construction. 
One of the few quality business park sites in Thanet, commercial demand 
has increased recently (with over 2,800 sq. m built out over the past 18 
months). However, significant capacity remains, with scope for the Park to 
accommodate around a further 2,000 jobs. 
‘China Gateway’ is an approximately 40 hectare site to the north west of the 
Manston Airport site. Thanet District Council passed a resolution to grant 
planning permission to a single occupier in 2010, although development has 
not yet come forward.   
 
1.4. Infrastructure 
provision 
Both Discovery Park and Manston are well served by new road 
infrastructure. The East Kent Access road scheme opened in 2012, providing 
direct dual carriageway access to the motorway network, while work has 
commenced on the Westwood Relief Strategy, providing improved 
connections to Broadstairs and Ramsgate.  
Both sites also benefit from proximity to High Speed One rail services, with 
funding recently confirmed to deliver a new parkway station to serve the 
existing Discovery Park Enterprise Zone and new developments at Manston.  
 
1.5. 
Complementarity between the existing Enterprise Zone and the 
proposed extension 

The existing Discovery Park Enterprise Zone offers a world-class science 
park location. As envisaged in the original Enterprise Zone business case, 
most development at Discovery Park will consist of B1a (office) and B1b 
(R&D) uses, with an element of B1c (light industrial) and B2 (general 
industrial) use, alongside complementary residential and leisure uses 
outlined above. Discovery Park will retain this high-value, knowledge-
intensive sectoral focus.  
It is envisaged that the extension to Manston will be complementary, rather 
than competitive, with the existing Zone. In particular, the new owners have 
identified demand for B8 (warehousing and distribution) uses, supporting B2 
and B1c industrial floorspace, with potential opportunities in the 
manufacturing, environmental technologies and aviation sectors (as well as 
the potential retention of operational airport capacity). This anticipated 
demand has been used as the basis for the floorspace delivery and 
employment projections within this business case. This anticipated demand 
reflects actual demand at Manston Business Park as well as requirements 
from potential occupiers expressing an interest in B8, B2 and B1c uses at 
Discovery Park, but which cannot be appropriately accommodated on the 
site.  
 
1.6. Linked 
sites 
The expanded Enterprise Zone also complements other major commercial 
developments in East Kent. In particular, development at Betteshanger 
Sustainable Park to the south-west of Sandwich, is transforming a former 
colliery site into a new centre for education, leisure and business activity 
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focused on environmental technologies.  
Led by Hadlow College, Kent’s main provider of further and higher education 
for the land-based sector, Betteshanger Sustainable Park includes 30,000 
sq. m of commercial floorspace, with the first 5,500 sq. m of incubator space 
due to open in November 2016. Strong links exist already between Hadlow 
and Discovery Park Ltd, and the environmental focus at Betteshanger 
effectively complements the scientific R&D focus at Discovery Park.  
 
1.7. 
Aims and outcomes 
Strategic aims 
This proposal to extend the Enterprise Zone aims to:  
a)   Create new employment in direct response to the closure of Manston 
Airport; and  
b)  Create a significant cluster of complementary economic activity in East 
Kent building on the success of Discovery Park and adding value to the 
growth of commercial activity on neighbouring sites such as 
Betteshanger.  
The closure of Manston Airport presents an economic challenge to Thanet 
and East Kent, an area characterised by low productivity, relatively high 
unemployment and a historic dependency on lower value sectors. Discovery 
Park Enterprise Zone has proved that there is demand for high quality 
business space from high value employers, and the acquisition of the 
Manston Airport site by the owners of the existing EZ provides an opportunity 
to build on this success and on the value of existing infrastructure in 
changing Thanet’s business base.  
Quantifiable outcomes 
By extending the Enterprise Zone, we aim to create over 1,800 net additional 
jobs at Manston by bringing forward commercial development. Of these, we 
aim to create 650 jobs by 2021/22. These jobs will be created through the 
delivery of 100,000 sq. m of net additional employment floorspace, of which 
we aim to deliver 45,000 sq. m by 2021/22.  
Additional outcomes 
In addition, by bringing forward commercial development, it is anticipated that 
Enterprise Zone extension will also increase the viability of new, high quality 
residential development at Manston. However, it should be noted that the 
quantum and nature and location of any housing development is not yet 
known and will be determined through the planning process.  
 
1.8. 
Specific Enterprise Zone request 
In extending the Enterprise Zone, we seek the application of 100% business 
rate discounts to the Manston on the same terms as the discounts available 
to occupiers at Discovery Park. 
We are not seeking any change to the terms on which business rate 
discounts are offered at Discovery Park: consistent with the current 
arrangements at Discovery Park, it is essential that the business rate 
discounts regime will have no detrimental impact on the business rates 
baselines of either Dover District Council or Thanet District Council and that 
the status quo will be maintained. For clarity, Dover District Council is in 
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support of this application for Enterprise Zone extension on the 
understanding that the redefined Enterprise Zone will be set out in revisions 
to the red area of the ‘Maps referred to in the Non-Domestic Rating (Rates 
Retention) Regs 2013’. This means that all the hereditaments in the 
expanded Enterprise Zone – both existing and new – will be ‘Case B’ 
hereditaments. There will be no ‘blue area’ in the expanded Enterprise Zone 
and no Case A hereditaments. However, reflecting recent selective 
demolitions at Discovery Park, Dover District Council requests that DCLG 
reviews Dover’s business rates baseline.  
At this stage, we are not seeking enhanced capital allowances (ECAs) or any 
other measures which would incur an exchequer cost. However, the 
Treasury has previously stated in respect of the existing Discovery Park 
Enterprise Zone that should ECAs provide a significant incentive to a larger 
occupier, it would be prepared to consider the application of ECAs in the 
future. Given that the Enterprise Zone is within an assisted area, the offer of 
ECAs would be viable, although we do not anticipate a requirement in the 
short term.  
 
Current situation 
2.1.     Jobs and businesses 
 
At present, there are 97 businesses located at the existing Discovery Park 
Enterprise Zone, employing approximately 1,950 people. This includes a 
number of larger pharmaceutical businesses (including Pfizer, Mylan and 
Peakdale Molecular) as well as a larger number of SMEs, both in R&D and 
other sectors.   
 
2.2.     Incentives currently available 
There are currently three main incentives offered by the public sector to 
support business growth at Discovery Park:  
  Business rate discounts, available to a maximum of £275,000 per 
business over a five year period.  
  Direct interest-free loan and equity finance offered by the Regional 
Growth Fund-supported Expansion East Kent programme. So far, six 
businesses based at Discovery Park have secured £2.4 million in 
Expansion East Kent finance, enabling them to lever a further £5.3 million 
from the private sector and securing 221 jobs.  
Expansion East Kent funding is also available on the proposed extension 
at Manston. Both parts of the Zone are located within the East Kent 
Assisted Area, enabling a higher level of support to business than would 
otherwise be the case.  
  Simplified planning, through the Local Development Order adopted by 
Dover District Council. The Order effectively grants planning permission 
for certain uses, minor developments and demolitions, enabling 
businesses to adapt their premises without seeking planning permission. 
Given the recent closure of Manston as an operational airport and the 
very recent acquisition of the site, there is further work to do in 
determining planning policy for the Manston Airport site. However, 
significant experience has been gained both by Dover District Council 
and Discovery Park Ltd in the preparation of the Local Development 
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Order: this has already been shared with neighbouring authorities in East 
Kent and will be used to support Thanet District Council in preparing a 
LDO for all or part of the Manston Airport and Business Park area, should 
this prove to be the most effective planning route.  
This incentive package will be retained and expanded as part of the 
Discovery Park and Manston Growth Deal proposed in the Strategic 
Economic Plan.  
 
2.3.    Governance and management 
The existing Discovery Park Enterprise Zone is co-ordinated by an Enterprise 
Zone Board. This is chaired by the Leader of Dover District Council, and 
includes representatives of Discovery Park Ltd., Kent County Council, Locate 
in Kent (the county’s inward investment agency) and DCLG. The Board aims 
to support the delivery of employment and business growth within the 
Enterprise Zone, ensuring that marketing and promotion efforts are co-
ordinated, incentive packages are joined up and that all key statutory bodies 
are aware of and can respond positively to the growth of Discovery Park.  
The Enterprise Zone Board was established in 2012 and has proved both 
stable and effective. It is proposed that with the extension of the Enterprise 
Zone, the Board is expanded to include representation from Thanet District 
Council and the owners of the additional area.  
At present, the lead officer contact for Discovery Park Enterprise Zone is the 
Head of Inward Investment at Dover District Council. This will continue in 
respect of the expanded Zone.  
 
Objectives 
3.1.    Overall objectives 
 
See also Section 1.6 above. 
The extension of the Enterprise Zone aims to accelerate the development of 
the former Manston Airport site and Manston Business Park by providing 
Government support and an additional financial incentive alongside new 
private sector investment.  
 
3.2.    Specific objectives 
Specifically, the Enterprise Zone extension aims to:  
  Support the creation of net additional 1,800 jobs, of which around 650 
will be delivered by 2021/22 (in addition to the target of 3,000 jobs on 
the original Discovery Park site); and 
  Deliver 45,000 sq. m of net additional floorspace by 2021/22. 
 
Economic Case  
Exchequer cost 
4.1.     Overall Treasury cost 
(£) / Tax 
Annex 1 sets out the estimated cost to the Treasury of Enterprise Zone 
Implications 
extension. We estimate that the maximum cost will be £3,540,000 between 
 
2015/16 and 2021/22.  
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4.2.     Assumptions 
This estimate is based on the following assumptions, which are set out in 
greater detail in Annex 3:  
a)  The only substantive cost to Treasury is the costs of business rate 
discounts to a maximum value of £275,000 per business over five years. 
We do not anticipate at this stage any additional infrastructure costs to be 
borne by central Government, other than those already committed.  While 
there may be a case for enhanced capital allowances at both the existing 
Discovery Park and the extension to Manston (as set out in Section 1.6), 
we do not anticipate that the costs associated with this would exceed the 
costs of the business rate discounts.  
b)  Based on current estimated business requirements, around 35,000 sq. m 
additional floorspace is likely to be brought forward at Manston Business 
Park and Manston Airport by 2017/18. We have assumed that this will be 
the final year in which new occupiers will be able to take advantage of the 
five year business rate discount window. We have also assumed that 
should the China Gateway site be built out before 2021/22, the total cost 
as a single user site will be no greater than the maximum £275,000.  
c)  An analysis has then been undertaken of the typical size of properties 
and their rateable values. This is based on an estimated mix of 
floorspace across the Manston extended area of 70% B8/B2 uses 
(warehousing distribution and general industrial use) and 30% B1c uses 
(light industrial use). This reflects the current (early) understanding of the 
distribution of uses that are likely to be sought on the site, and which are 
complementary to the uses at the existing Discovery Park site. We have 
also made assumptions regarding the number of businesses occupying 
larger properties where the amount of rates relief they receive will be 
capped because the rates they pay will exceed £55,000 per annum. This 
is set out in Annex 3.  
4.3.   Indicative costs per job 
With a total exchequer cost of £3,540,000 and estimated net additional jobs 
of 1,840, the cost per net additional job is approximately £1,924. 
 
Impact and 
The impact of Enterprise Zone extension will be seen through both direct 
Benefits  
quantifiable and indirect benefits.  
 
5.1.  Direct quantifiable benefits 
In line with the objectives set out above, the Enterprise Zone extension will 
deliver additional floorspace and job creation benefits.  
a)  Additional commercial floorspace 
Overall, both the Manston Airport and Manston Business Park sites could 
accommodate around 300,000 sq m of commercial floorspace (including 
potential aviation capacity). 
Enterprise Zone designation will help to bring the delivery of this commercial 
development forward, both through the marketing advantages that EZ 
designation brings and through the provision of temporary business rate 
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discounts, which will provide a powerful incentive to occupiers to take 
advantage of additional space in the short to medium term.  
An independent study carried out by Wessex Economics on behalf of the 
Enterprise Zone Board estimates that a total of 80,000 sq. m could be 
delivered by 2021/22. This is made up of:  
  5,000 sq m of new floorspace coming forward at Manston Business Park 
in 2015/16 and 2016/17. The past 18 months have seen the build out of 
2,800 sq m of floorspace at Manston Business Park: the incentives 
offered by Enterprise Zone designation (and the higher profile given to 
the area) are likely to mean an increased rate of delivery.  
Assuming that recent historical performance represents the ‘do nothing’ 
case, we estimate that around 1,270 sq m net additional commercial 
floorspace at Manston Business Park can be apportioned to Enterprise 
Zone designation.  
  75,000 sq m of new floorspace coming forward on the Manston Airport 
site. This is based on development starting in 2016/17 according to the 
emerging plans of the new owners, with all development pre-let or built to 
order. This estimate of delivery follows the experience of the new owners 
in bringing forward the Wynyard Park development near Stockton and 
assumes that the Enterprise Zone incentive package will help to 
accelerate development as occupiers are encouraged to take up space 
ahead of the closure of the business rates discount window.  
b) Additional employment 
The Wessex Economics study estimates that Manston Airport and Business 
Park could ultimately accommodate around 5,000 jobs. However, these will 
be delivered over a very long period of over thirty years in the absence of 
intervention, with only around 110 jobs likely to be created in the period to 
2021 through continued development at historic rates within the Manston 
Business Park area.  
Assuming that Enterprise Zone designation has the effect of accelerating 
development as outlined above, it is estimated that 1,571 jobs will be created 
on the extended EZ area by 2021/22. This estimate is based on standard job 
densities for the likely mix of development, and is set out on the 
spreadsheets in Annex 1.  
Taking into account deadweight (the number of jobs that would have been 
delivered anyway), displacement (jobs that have been reduced elsewhere) 
and optimism bias, the estimated number of net additional jobs created 
through Enterprise Zone extension is approximately 650 to 2021/22 and 
1,840 in total.  
The estimates of deadweight, displacement and optimism bias have been 
incorporated into the DCLG spreadsheet in Annex 1. These have been made 
using standard discount factors to adjust the gross jobs estimates based on 
floorspace. However, these adjustments are likely to make the estimates 
conservative. In particular, the standard regional displacement factor may 
underestimate the extent of market failure in East Kent; where quality, 
serviced commercial land has been made available (for example at Manston 
Business Park), the market has responded positively. However, low values 
have hampered the market’s ability to deliver, and in the case of Manston 
Business Park, long term investment by the public sector has been essential 
to the viability of commercial development. 
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c) Land value uplift 
Clearly, commercial development on the Manston Airport site will lead to 
significant land value uplift. The amount paid by the new owners for the site 
is commercially confidential, although given the circumstances of the sale, it 
is likely that the purchase of the site will have been below the going rate for 
commercial land in East Kent.  
As development proceeds, there will obviously be an increase in business 
rate receipts on the Enterprise Zone extension area (although it should be 
noted that the former airport incurred a significant business rates liability). 
Consistent with the position on the existing Enterprise Zone, we are not 
seeking special Enterprise Zone business rate retention measures, so 
Government stands to benefit directly from the increase in business rates 
payable over time.  
 
5.2.    Indirect benefits 
In addition to quantifiable commercial floorspace and jobs outputs, the 
extension of the Enterprise Zone will have a wider impact on the East Kent 
economy by establishing a stronger core commercial zone in the Sandwich 
Corridor and Thanet Central Island, adding value to the existing offer at 
Discovery Park. Both the existing and proposed extended EZ sites benefit 
from shared strategic infrastructure and successive strategies (including the 
South East Strategic Economic Plan) have identified the value of a stronger 
‘critical mass’ of commercial development to make best use of existing 
infrastructure investment.  
This will be supported by the complementary investment in Betteshanger 
Sustainable Park, where work will commence shortly on a new 5,500 sq. m 
Green Technologies Incubation Hub, due to open in November 2016, linked 
with a wider educational and leisure offer.  
 
6.1.    Timing additionality 
Additionality 
 
In the absence of Enterprise Zone extension, it is anticipated that 
development at Manston will take much longer to come forward. The ‘do 
nothing’ case set out in the spreadsheet in Annex 1 estimates that no 
development will come forward until 2020/21, with build out proceeding at a 
gradual rate over a period of over thirty years.  
 
The timing additionality effect works in two ways:  
 
  First, the time-limited nature of the business rate discount provides an 
incentive for occupiers to take up space earlier than they might otherwise 
have done; this is likely to be most significant around 2017/18, before the 
window of opportunity closes for businesses to take advantage of the 
maximum five year rate relief period.  
  Second, the non-financial aspects of Enterprise Zone designation (in 
particular Government backing, the commitment to simplified planning 
and a coordinated approach to marketing) will be significant in the first 
few years of development on the Manston Airport site, helping to change 
investor perceptions ahead of the majority of commercial build-out.  
In the first two years of business rates relief being available, occupation of 
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new premises will be focused on Manston Business Park, with occupation on 
the main Airport site from year 3. Accelerated delivery of commercial 
development at the Business Park will help to reinforce confidence in 
Manston as a whole, while the smaller units developed at the Business Park 
will be complementary to the larger footprints on the Airport site.  
 
6.2.    Scale additionality 
It is anticipated that scale additionality will be less significant, given the plans 
of the owners of the Manston sites to build out their land eventually. Both 
owners have track records in patient, long term development.  
However, the stock of employment land in East Kent is significant, and the 
addition of the Manston Airport site represents a substantial increase. 
Without support from the public sector – through the wider package of 
incentive and promotion measures set out above as well as through 
Enterprise Zone designation – it is possible that the scale of the extended 
Zone’s employment potential will not be reached.  
 
Commercial Case 
Commercial 
7.1.     Overview 
rationale 
The commercial rationale for the Enterprise Zone extension proposal is 
three-fold:  
 
  First, it is important to note that Discovery Park is owned and is being 
developed by commercial interests. Key partners in Discovery Park are 
also involved in the consortium that has bought Manston Airport and are 
promoting development. This is a private sector-led scheme.  
  Second, given the overlap of ownership between Discovery Park and 
Manston, the owners will be working to maximise development revenues 
through a complementary, rather than competitive approach to 
development. There is expected to be cross-referral of leads between the 
two parts of the Enterprise Zone.  
  Third, the area covered by the extension has been mapped to ensure 
both early delivery of floorspace and jobs, while providing confidence to 
support longer term development.  
  Finally, the incentive measures proposed are designed to be simple and 
attractive to a large range of potential occupiers.  
 
7.2.     Commercial rationale for the mix of uses 
As outlined in Section 1.5, the mix of uses anticipated for the extended Zone 
at Manston is different from that in place and planned at Discovery Park. It is 
anticipated that Manston will take aviation-related manufacturing, other 
industrial and distribution uses that are likely to be incompatible with the 
vision for Discovery Park as a high-value, knowledge-focused science park, 
with a range of units that will generally be larger than those that can currently 
be accommodated in other locations in East Kent. Across the combined 
Enterprise Zone, we therefore aim to create a broader commercial offer 
which is new to the sub-regional economy.  
The credibility of the complementary offer across Discovery Park and the 
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Manston extension is enhanced by the fact that the Manston Airport and 
Discovery Park sites share partial ownership. Clearly, it will not be in the 
interests of the owners of Discovery Park (or the Enterprise Zone Board) to 
forego investment that could enhance the value of the Park. The fact that the 
new owners recognise the role of the Airport site as a location for uses that 
would be less compatible with the vision for Discovery Park demonstrates a 
strong commitment to the future of Discovery Park as a centre for 
knowledge-led business as envisaged in the original case for Enterprise 
Zone status.  
The proposed mix of uses are also complementary with those in existence or 
proposed for other sites in East Kent. In particular, as highlighted above, 
there is a close alignment between the green tech businesses proposed for 
Betteshanger and the scientific R&D focus of Discovery Park.  
 
7.3.      Commercial rationale for the proposed extension area 
In considering the extension of the Enterprise Zone, consideration was given 
to a number of options, including the designation of the Manston Airport site 
without the adjacent Manston Business Park. We have included the Business 
Park since it is already successful, supports almost 1,000 jobs and is being 
steadily built out. Accelerating delivery at Manston Business Park will help to 
deliver early additional employment growth in the area (compensating for the 
loss of jobs following the airport closure) and will help to drive both 
confidence in commercial growth on the adjacent Airport site and enhance 
the credibility of the extended Enterprise Zone brand.  
 
7.4.       Commercial rationale for the incentive mix 
The ask of Government through Enterprise Zone extension is focused on 
business rates discounts to a maximum of £55,000 per year over five years. 
This is a simple and clear incentive, which has already proved to be 
successful at Discovery Park and which is accessible to businesses in all 
sectors. It is anticipated that it will be especially relevant in the short term, 
given the potential for smaller business units to be developed at Manston 
Business Park.  
 
 
ANNEXES 
Annex 1: Cost and benefit profile (Excel spreadsheet) 
Annex 2: Maps 
  Map A: Strategic location map 
  Map B: Combined Enterprise Zone map (Discovery Park + Manston Extension) 
  Map C: Proposed extension map, showing land ownerships 
Annex 3: Discovery Park Enterprise Zone: Modelling the economic impacts and exchequer costs of 
the proposed Enterprise Zone extension (Wessex Economics) 
Annex 4: Expansion East Kent at Discovery Park 
Annex 5: Links with key sites in Dover 
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Annex 6: Summary of Betteshanger Sustainable Park 
Annex 7: Confirmatory letters of support 
 
 
 
FURTHER INFORMATION 
 
Discovery Park: www.discovery-park.co.uk  
East Kent Opportunities (Manston Business Park): www.ekopportunities.com 
Betteshanger Sustainable Park: www.betteshangerparks.co.uk  
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