Heathrow Third Runway Gets The Nod

Insert planes here ^ ^ ^

Insert planes here ^ ^ ^

So there you have it. SO. THERE. YOU… oh hang on a minute, let’s just wait for that plane to pass…

… There, that’s better.

So there you have it, we’re gonna take one for the team! The Davies Report into UK airport expansion has been published and recommends a third runway at Heathrow. We can exclusively reveal that no one at all expresses much surprise at that but that plenty of people will express anger and some will express joy, not least the airport’s Spanish owner Ferrovial and its shareholders. Get ready for tens of thousands of extra flights a year… although not for a while yet.

The Commission focused on the business case for the UK, looking at growth, jobs and trade whilst trying to give due consideration to issues such as noise, pollution and pressure on infrastructure. On the business case, it does feel like a bigger Heathrow was always going to be the winner. The Commission says a third runway will add “£147bn in economic growth and 70,000 jobs by 2050”. But of course life isn’t just about pure economics, if it were, Londoners might as well start campaigning for devolution from the rest of the UK.

The report recommends that strict conditions be applied around a commitment to no night flights and no fourth runway as well as other protections around noise, etc. You know, the kind of stuff that will get chipped away at quite quickly. The Sir Howard Davies ruled out the ‘extended’ second runway plan at Heathrow but expansion at Gatwick is billed as ‘credible option’ giving politicians a get-out clause if opposition to Heathrow all gets a bit too much for them.

So what next? We can expect a lot of rubbishing of the recommendations from the various opposition groups, or “report slamming” to use the correct phrase. And we can also expect a few smug and self-satisfied tweets from the Back Heathrow boys. You might be thinking there’s no difference between smug and self-satisfied but we’re playing safe here and reckoning they’ll be ticking both boxes ‘for the community’.

Boris and Zac will be rolled out to voice their objections and we can expect “our Tania” to do the same. Probably. Richmond Council leader Lord ‘The Blue Baron’ True has already come out, all guns blazing with his own brand of slamming. In an LBRuT press release he says: “In a democracy people look to their Government to listen to the voice of Londoners, who already contribute massively more than any other community in Europe in accepting airport pollution, noise and danger. Ministers should bin this flawed report; they should not put the self-interest of the big overseas interests who own Heathrow and their paid lobbyists before the reasoned case of Londoners”.

It’s gonna get nasty. It’s gonna get noisy. And, after all of that, there are plenty of folk saying it still might not ever happen. Or will it?

* The Commission Report
* BBC News
* El Brute Press Release
* Teddington (& Twickenham) Action Group
* Back Heathrow

Plane landing at Heathrow

Plane landing at Heathrow


Filed under Heathrow, Local Issues & News

23 responses to “Heathrow Third Runway Gets The Nod

  1. Ex-Twickenham Resident

    If aircraft capacity has to be increased, any sane person would conclude that Gatwick would be the best option.

  2. Simon Hemelryk

    We left Twickenham for Hove just over a year ago as we feared this might happen. Really sorry that it has. It is lunacy..

    And the national news reports are so poor. No mention of the new flightpath over Ealing, Chiswick etc: places not currently affected by planes. No mention of the huge noise Twickenham gets when winds are from the east. They make it sound like one village will be demolished and everyone else is making a fuss about nothing. Maddening.

  3. Ps, also welcome back Twickerati. Can’t think with combination of noise and heat!

  4. Can everyone who has commented here please join Teddington Action Group, http://www.teddingtonactiongroup.com/? The group covers all of TW1, TW2, TW10 and TW11 and anyone from further afield. We are active and get MPs’ and jourmalists’ attention, see coverage in Evening Standard two weeks ago.

  5. David Johns

    Just a small thought. If everyone who isn’t under the flight path (no double glazing) bought Industrial lasers and played them Vertically at night, as we are not under the flight path we would not be committing any dangerous acts and endangering pilots/passengers lives. Or is that just silly!

  6. Gutted

    No ifs and buts…it’s Heathrow.

    As a sound engineer by trade I could record the plane noise, then hire a vans with a massive speaker on it and play it on a loop outside John Holland-Kaye house until about 12:15am, then start again at 5:55am. If he calls the Police I’ll call him a hypocrite.

    • Sally

      Please, please do it. I have thought of recording the appalling noise of the planes accurately and verified by the NPL. Then showing up outside the house of the Heathrow execs, or indeed Back Heathrow flunkies ( Could require some travel) and playing the sound day and night same decibels same frequency same duration. According to their ads, they won’t even notice.

    • David Johns

      Please do it. I for one will gladly stump up a percentage of any Noise pollution fine if it proves a point (but please get others on board first!).

      Why not find out where Howard Davies lives – or better yet play it outside his new office at RBS – Yes we will still be paying for his wonderful (lack of) judgement.

    • Please do it His address is in the public domain.

    • Sally

      Also happy to donate towards any fines.

    • Gutted

      When the flight path changes I’ll get my sound recorder out. I’ll keep you posted.

  7. twickerman

    Heathrow are continuing to bullshit us (from RTT):

    But John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow’s chief executive, said Richmond residents would benefit from less noise impact should the plans proceed.

    He said: “For Richmond, Heathrow expansion will mean less noise impact, quieter and lighter aircraft.

    • twickerman

      … that comment was sent prematurely as one of those super light, quiet A380s thundered over Twickenham causing me to accidently press Post!

    • Rufus McDufus

      The A380, one of those ‘whisper quiet’ planes they promised us 20-odd years ago during planning for T5 (I think it was).

    • Sally

      War is Peace. Slavery is Freedon. More planes means less noise.
      If the sky becomes black with an endless stream of these silent planes we all now are enjoying, why then, Twickeham will be the quietest place on Earth.

  8. Yay – welcome back! And yes, no surprise I suppose. I’ve had a grump with them about the noise lately and was sent a completely indecipherable chart that is supposed to convince me that there is no increase in take-off flights over Twickenham. It didn’t. I don’t see why Gatwick shouldn’t get another runway & can’t fathom what amazing power it is that the few thousand residents of Surrey/Sussex have that we seem to lack.

    • Rufus McDufus

      To be fair to Gatwick I don’t think they should be subjected to it either. Why shouldn’t it built elsewhere, up north perhaps, seeing as they’re less well-served for airports plus 50% of passenger traffic is hub traffic anyway. I realise this wish is totally futile now.

  9. Welcome back Twickers. We may have to use you as our local newspaper if the Richmond and Twickenham continues charging 55p for a load of adverts and hardly any copy.
    The Heathrow Chief Executive was on Radio 4 this morning ducking the question about night flights. Time for the Conservative and Lib Dem Councillors to unite against the 3rd runway. Just think what we could do as a coalition! Ha!

    • The R&TT journalists are on strike at the moment, btw. Lovely journalist Tom Ambrose told me that the staff levels are being cut to pieces and they are based in some building out in Sutton. Hardly anyone there has even visited Richmond/Twickenham and it’s all a complete mess. (Sorry, I’m digressing)

  10. Chloe

    We had noticed the same. The report must be read very carefully. Initially I thought one of the bribes, sorry, I mean ‘measures’ offered to the community – or the ‘few’ – (not often you hear 3/4 of a million people called that) was protection of the respite periods…it says a number of times that Heathrow expansion would mean these could be ‘reliably maintained’ but then you read that they would be less… so how is that maintaining them. It is cutting them, but then suggesting Heathrow sticks to them better than they do now…ummm…

  11. Sandhan

    Come back Twickerati, we miss you.

  12. Sally

    Horrible news, although as you say not a shock.
    The planes have been roaring over the last couple of days and I have had the odd jaundiced thought that Heathrow isn’t even bothering to appear to give a stuff about noise levels any more.