Heathrow residents to demand financial compensation for impact of Airports Commission report on their house prices

People with homes near Heathrow will press for financial compensation if the Airports Commission announces on 17th that they are backing a new Heathrow runway. As the Commission is not due to report till summer 2015, at the least they face blight and an impact on their house prices over the next  18 months, while they are held in limbo. Anti-Heathrow campaigners will appeal to Sir Howard Davies, chairman of the Airports Commission, to ensure homeowners receive financial support for the uncertainty and potential damage that the 17th December announcement may cause. The leak of the report suggests the Commission favours first one runway, and also a second runway at Heathrow. That would mean a large number of people across west London affected by one or other proposal. The issue of blight and house prices is key for thousands, let alone the threat of compulsory purchase and demolition.  Boris Johnson has accused the Prime Minister of using the Commission just “to provide cover for a U-turn on Heathrow” and he continues to fiercely oppose Heathrow expanding.
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Heathrow residents to demand compensation

People with homes near to Heathrow will press for financial compensation amid fears over how a major report from the Government’s Airports Commissioner this week will impact their house prices over the next two years.

John Stewart of the anti-Heathrow expansion campaign, HACAN, said he will demand answers from Sir Howard on how to address the issue of blight, as homeowners will be stuck in an 18-month limbo before the commission’s final recommendations are delivered after the General Election in 2015.

By  (Telegraph)

15 Dec 2013

Homeowners near Heathrow will demand compensation for two years of “blight”, as the UK’s airports commissioner prepares to short-list at least one option for expansion at the West London hub.

Anti-Heathrow campaigners will appeal to Sir Howard Davies, chairman of the Airports Commission, to ensure homeowners receive financial support for the uncertainty and potential damage to their house prices caused by a report to be published on Tuesday.

Sir Howard has been asked by the Government to short-list bids for new runways in the South East of England.

But the report risks sparking a fierce political row as at least one, potentially two, options for expanding Heathrow are expected to be named, along with a second runway at Gatwick Airport and increased capacity at Stansted.

John Stewart of the anti-Heathrow expansion campaign, HACAN, said he will demand answers from Sir Howard on how to address the issue of blight, as homeowners will be stuck in an 18-month limbo before the commission’s final recommendations are delivered after the General Election in 2015.

“Speaking to local people, especially those whose homes are under threat of demolition, blight as well as noise is the issue that comes up time and time again,” said Mr Stewart.

Anti-Heathrow campaigners are already galvanising support for a “high profile” campaign to launch next year, which will likely receive a boost from London’s Mayor Boris Johnson, who has accused the Prime Minister of using the commission “to provide cover for a u-turn on Heathrow”.

Both the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats opposed a third runway at Heathrow before the last General Election. However, Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin, on Sunday refused to rule out expansion at Heathrow on the BBC’s Andrew Marr show.

2 of the comments:

If you buy property near one of the worlds busiest airports surely you have to expect the inconvenience of noise and possible expansion.

Even after the government clear ruled out expanding it? ‘No ifs, no buts, there will be no Heathrow expansion’- David Cameron (2010). A bit harsh if you thought that meant it was safe to buy a property under one of the proposed new flightpaths.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/10519174/Heathrow-residents-to-demand-compensation.html

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No ifs No buts

Text of a Conservative election flyer for the May 2010 elections in west London.


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It’s ‘Like being on death row’: residents facing devastating impact of Heathrow runway plans

17.12.2013

Residents of a historic village that could be obliterated under today’s proposals to expand Heathrow said the plans would have a “devastating” impact on their lives.  Some 1,500 buildings would be lost in Harmondsworth and neighbouring Longworth by a north west Heathrow runway – one of the options short-listed by the Airports Commission.  People fear the prospect of being as little compensation as the airport can get away with.  Residents and business owners in Harmondsworth urged the Government to speed up their decision-making – comparing the impact to “being on death row”.  Parts of Harmondsworth are over 1,000 years old and the village contains the Tithe Barn and St Mary’s Church, both places of heritage value.   The vicar of St Mary’s Church said: “We lost one-third of our congregation due to the uncertainty over the runway. We used to have 45 on a regular Sunday; it’s come down to 25 or 30, half of whom come from outside the village.” Geraldine Nicholson, who lives in West Drayton just 100m away from one of the proposed runways, said it is not just the villages that would be affected, and 10,000 homes north of the M4 would suffer too – there would be very negative social, as well as environmental, impacts.

http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=18982

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Philip Pank article in The Times  21.12.2013

Tories betrayed us, say locals living in Heathrow’s shadow

They may seem unlikely supporters of direct action, but the people of Harmondsworth are planning flashmob protests and demonstrations. They could scarcely be pitted against more powerful opponents than the Whitehall machine and the international investors who own Heathrow.

Full article in the Times http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/news/politics/article3955566.ece
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Earlier:

AirportWatch calls on Airports Commission to safeguard communities under threat of blight from airport proposals

11.9.2013

AirportWatch – which includes campaign groups at a number of airports facing the threat of expansion – have joined forces in writing to Sir Howard Davies, Chairman of the Airports Commission, calling upon him to safeguard all the threatened communities against blight. The Commission is due to produce an interim report at the end of this year and, if it concludes that the UK needs more airport capacity, it will publish a shortlist of options. The Commission’s final report and recommendations won’t be published until mid-2015, after the next general election, and it will then be for the Government of the day to take any final decisions. As soon as such a list is published, every single one of the areas under threat will be hit by generalised blight and people will immediately experience not only stress and uncertainty, but difficulties in selling their homes. The campaigners’ letter asks Sir Howard “to make it a pre-condition for being shortlisted for the promoter of an airport development proposal to undertake to introduce fair and reasonable arrangements to address the problem of generalised blight arising from their proposal within three months of being shortlisted and to operate such arrangements for a minimum period of two years.”http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=17320

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Packed public meeting in Stanwell Moor hears of threat of 850 house demolitions, noise and blight from Heathrow runway plans

11.9.2013

Over 200 people attended a meeting in Stanwell Moor Village Hall, organised through the residents’ association, on 3rd September, with standing room only. The people of Stanwell Moor face eviction and the demolition of their houses, and those in Stanwell face blight and an uncertain future – the possibility of intense aircraft noise and air pollution if another runway is allowed. There were people queuing outside trying to get in, such was the demand to hear what the Heathrow airport operators had in mind for their area. Nigel Milton, Heathrow’s director of policy, said 850 homes in Stamwell Moor village would be demolished to make way for a 3,500 metre runway – if it was ever allowed.  Kathy Croft, chairman of the Stanwell Moor Residents’ Association, said:  “It will then be for the next government to act. Kwasi Kwarteng was invited but he gave his apologies … “. The problem of large areas of blight that will inevitably be caused if the Airports Commission put Heathrow on their short list in December is a very real one.  There will be another meeting on 18th September, organised by Spelthorne Borough Council.