Heathrow can only ever be part-time
RE: Criticisms fly at would-be MP Boris (Gazette, September 17) MR ROB Gray, campaign co-ordinator for the pro Heathrow Expansion Group, comments that local residents ‘must be rubbing their eyes in disbelief ’.
Mr Gray seems to be quite adept at ignoring the facts.
Sir John Randall was opposed to Heathrow expansion and fought elections on this policy, giving him a majority of 11,000.
In the most comprehensive opinion poll held in the constituency, 66 per cent were opposed to a third runway.
Lord Foster, the distinguished airport architect, recently described a third runway at Heathrow as a quick-fix solution.
Heathrow is a part-time airport, closed at night, because it is flying over a densely populated area. This would remain the case if a third runway were to be built. It would be an under-used asset, closed for almost a third of the time, outdated by the time it is built in 2024 and further capacity would be required.
The only place a four-runway, 24/7 hub airport can be built is east of London. In the end common sense will prevail; it is the only solution to the lack of airport capacity in the south-east.
Had it not have been for the intransigence first of BAA and now Heathrow Airport Ltd in opposing the Thames Hub, construction would have started long ago. destroys his argument. Assuming that Heathrow doesn’t get a third runway, if it were to close, it would take at least 20 years for that to happen.
The second point is that the land covered by Heathrow at the moment would, in the future, provide industry and housing of a better quality.
The balance of Mr Gray’s argument, as usual, does not take into account the increased pollution, noise and traffic affecting our residents.
It is easy to say these issues can be resolved, but that cannot be proved. In the previous 10 years, pollution has not decreased in spite of new aircraft coming into operation. With a third runway, the number of flights will increase again and, even taking into account new aircraft being introduced, the most likely outcome is still high levels of pollution, noise and traffic. This equates to more cases of early death for local residents. The final point is on infrastructure. We are critically short of primary schools, yet Heathrow’s plan is to close the schools at Harmondsworth and Sipson.
We are short on housing, yet Heathrow plans to destroy a number of quality houses, numbering between 550 and excess of 1,000.
With very little land available in Hillingdon, does this mean more building on green belt land or will people have to move away from the area and lose their jobs?
No wonder Mr Gray’s comments are one-sided as he obviously does not want Back Heathrow to be associated with death and destruction on such a large scale. stems from the very obvious unequal distribution of the award-winning sites throughout the borough.
If my calculations have not failed me, the north of the borough collected seven awards, whereas the south of the borough collected just two.
I feel that it is no coincidence that the vast majority of the present Hillingdon Council cabinet represent wards in these aesthetically pleasing sites within their region, whereas in the south of the borough, in areas such as Hayes, we have streets and open spaces littered with spit and garbage.
This is a situation that the present council cabinet seem to support, even encourage, having seized a huge chunk of lake farm by the most dubious of means to build a school that will hold the offspring of those who are the main offenders, thus ensuring that this negative cycle continues.