New talks on increasing capacity at Heathrow
for "better not bigger" airports in the South-East.
decision to kill off the third runway.
out of Heathrow’s existing runways, with one of the business groups represented
saying that improving the airports was a "tall order" with current capacity.
of meetings to find ways of making operations at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted
the number of flights in and out of the big three airports.
main focus. Mr Hammond declared: "I have a clear vision of our airports which
sees greater reliability, shorter queues, less hassle and better services for
the constraints of the existing runways". However, Heathrow operator BAA has always
claimed that it could not continue successfully as a hub for international flights
unless a third runway was built to increase capacity.
we are always deeply suspicious of any body that has representation from the aviation
industry without balancing it with community interests."
made clear that more flights should be put on the agenda.
regulatory and operational changes.
a tall order when Heathrow is so full. We’d like to see a plan B for London’s
strained airport capacity."
Minister of State for Aviation (Theresa Villiers)
CAA (Civil Aviation Authority)
NATS (National Air Traffic Services)
BA (British Airways)
AUC (Air Transport Users Council)
AOA (Airport Operators Association)
the precise terms of reference will be agreed. These will then be available on
the DfT website.
“New chapter in aviation policy” – Hammond
will “recognize the need for restraint”, despite the importance of air travel
to the UK and global economy.
of this country” said Hammond, “and to the lives of our citizens. The aviation sector contributes
some £11bn to GDP and directly employs some 200,000 people.”
the aviation industry ” at the levels it has in the past”, as the consequences
in terms of noise and local air quality, as well as CO2 emissions would be “unacceptable”.
aviation industry, supporting UK economic growth, whilst recognising the need
for restraint,” he said.
runways at Heathrow, Stansted or Gatwick. Instead, we must explore different ways in which to improve the efficiency of
these key components of our national transport infrastructure.”
has set up a South East Airports Task Force, to explore measures to “help make the most of existing airport infrastructure
and improve conditions for all users”.
said would also include “key players from across the industry”.
Gatwick and Stansted,” he added. “I am confident that, by working closely with
the aviation sector, alongside our regulatory reforms, this will help deliver
improvements for all.”
busiest airports, Heathrow and Stansted, instead pushing forward plans to build
high speed rail lines in the UK.
some think may mean a further break-up of the UK’s largest airport operator BAA.
forced to sell Stansted and one of its Scottish airports.
that is being used, so there is slack in the system. BAA wanted to do
this by adding a runway (but ultimately aiming for it to be 95% full
again, as that is when they maximise their turnover) but there is
another way – reduce the number of flights.
Most of LHR’s customers are from London, so it is not obvious you
need Crossrail in order to get these people to stop using LHR to reach
Paris and to use Eurostar instead – it is merely down to cost firstly,
and convenience secondly. Address both of those ie make air more
expensive, and more constricted on flights to Paris, and add whatever
pampering they need at St Pancras and you are likely to be well on your
way to a slacker and hence better LHR.
How about a south east London stop for Eurostar – that would quite
possibly reduce the total travel time for a slab of people and be much
cheaper than Crossrail. Does Crossrail allow Eurostar to use the main
network? If not then it is probably pointless and very expensive.
Efficient through ticketing from the UK railways to Paris would also
help eg one ticket takes you from Bristol/Birmingham/Manchester to
Paris, including London Underground (with a Metro ticket thrown in).
about Heathrow; they will be about all the South East airports
including Gatwick where there is an intention to increase the number
of passengers from 32 million per year to over 40 million. That would
involve bigger planes and 20000 extra flights a year.
The environmental impact of such expansion would be widely felt and
the economic impact would also be negative because such growth would
Airport Watch is united in campaigning for an end to any expansion in