Heathrow No Vote? Vote No.

Richmond Council has nailed its “no third runway at Heathrow” colours firmly to the mast of HMS El Brute. A cross party motion at Richmond Council this week confirmed Tory and Lib Dem opposition to a third runway at any point in the future (bloody well ever) and according to El Brute’s main man, Lord True, the Council is at “all-out war with the big money interests and slick-suited PR men peddling this foolish project”. Ouch! Of course what True should have announced was: “This morning the Richmond Council Ambassador at Heathrow handed the airport lobbyists a final note, stating that, unless we heard from them by 11 o’clock that they were prepared at once to withdraw their support for a third runway, a state of war would exist between us. I have to tell you now that no such undertaking has been received and that consequently this Council is at war with Heathrow”. That would really have showed them who’s the boss around here!

True, aka the Blue Baron, also announced that Richmond residents will be able to confirm their opposition to a third runway by taking part in a “referendum-style vote”. It will take place by May 2013. We’re no particular fans of the third runway here at twickerati HQ (new runways need to be built near other people’s homes, them’s the rules) but is there any point bothering with a vote on the subject? The outcome is a foregone conclusion. The pro-runway lobbyists and businesses know that too and they’ll don their “slick suits” to dismiss the result as pure nimbyism. They’re a bit like that.

So, do you really want a vote? Is El Brute taking “local democracy” into places it doesn’t need to go, or should we spend public money on a referendum the result of which could be predicted today? And what next? A Neville Chamberlain inspired X-Factor? Don’t rule it out.

* El Brute Press Release


Filed under Council, Local Issues & News

7 responses to “Heathrow No Vote? Vote No.

  1. Boss

    A referendum on inclusive schools would be more appropriate.

  2. Simon H

    I’m opposed to a Third Runway, but I didn’t know it would mean an end to the half-day respite period. Why is this?

    • Anonymous

      ‘Mixed mode’ is a more effective use of the runways than having them alternate at 3pm. The smarter the airport is used, the less it would need to expand overall.

    • Anonymous

      > I’m opposed to a Third Runway, but I didn’t know it would mean an end to the half-day respite period. Why is this?

      You have swallowed the propaganda of the expansionist lobby, who are presenting the options as either/or (either a third runway or mixed mode on the two existing ones).

      They are conveniently ignoring that there is also the “neither/nor” option (no 3rd runway, keep mixed mode and simply make better use of existing capacity).

    • Simon H

      Er, no, I was just asking a question. Believe me, I never swallow any propaganda.

  3. This is just Lord True trying to catch up with what the local Lib Dems have been saying for months:

    ‘ . . [Jul 10]: Cllr Stephen Knight, Liberal Democrat Group Leader and London Assembly Member, said: “It is pretty clear to everyone that Conservatives in government are now actively pursuing the expansion of Heathrow as a policy u-turn, and are likely to sanction a massive increase in flights in the short term through the introduction of so-called ‘mixed mode’ operations. This would mean 60,000 extra flights a year overhead and residents living under the landing path would lose their half day respite periods.
    “BAA and the airlines have been fighting an intensive PR battle in favour of expansion for months. Richmond and other local councils need to get their heads out of the sand on this issue before it’s too late and mount an aggressive campaign of the sort we staged before the 2010 elections to protect our local communities and the environment.”

    • jimbo

      Anyone can start a rumour, Mr Squire. There is no sign that any decision will be made in the immediate future, and Mr Knight knows that.