Zac Goldsmith and HACAN launch short film contest over Heathrow 3rd runway plan
Tory MP for Richmond Park and North Kingston, and environmental campaigner, Zac Goldsmith has launched a film competition (with HACAN) to highlight opposition to a 3rd Heathrow runway – with £10,000 as the first prize. In an escalation of the anti-expansion campaign at Heathrow, Zac Goldsmith has also recruited celebrities to the cause with actor Hugh Grant and former Tory MP Giles Brandreth among the competition judges. Entrants to the competition will need to submit a short film (under 2 minutes) to highlight opposition to the runway. Shortlisted entries will be judged by the panel at a gala evening of 800 guests at the Richmond Theatre on 18th June with the prize money provided by Zac. The competition is called “No Ifs, No Buts”, recalling David Cameron’s infamous pre-election pledge made in 2009 to an audience in Richmond not to allow a 3rd runway to be built at Heathrow. The competition is looking for powerful messages that will be taken up on social and conventional media, and ram home the message that Heathrow expansion is not only the wrong solution for our economy, it is politically undeliverable. The closing date for video entries is 1st June.
MP Zac Goldsmith launches movie contest over Heathrow expansion
Zac Goldsmith and Boris oppose 3rd runway plans
MATTHEW BEARD, TRANSPORT EDITOR (Standard)
24 March 2014
Tory MP and environmental campaigner Zac Goldsmith today launched a film competition to highlight opposition to a third runway at Heathrow with £10,000 as the first prize.
In an escalation of the anti-expansion campaign, Goldsmith has also recruited celebrities to the cause with actor Hugh Grant and former Tory MP Giles Brandreth among the competition judges.
Entrants to the competition will be asked to submit a short film to highlight opposition to a third runway.
Shortlisted entries will be judged by the panel at a gala evening of 800 guests at the Richmond Theatre on 18 June with the prize money provided by Mr Goldsmith.
The competition is called “No Ifs, No Buts”, recalling David Cameron’s infamous pre-election pledge made in 2009 to an audience in Richmond not to allow a third runway to be built at Heathrow.
The Government’s aviation commission has since shortlisted Heathrow and Gatwick as sites for a new runway and will make its recommendation after next year’s election.
Mr Goldsmith said, “The competition is open to absolutely everyone, and will be judged on the night by a high- profile panel, as well as the audience itself. Among the submissions, I’m looking for some really powerful messages that will be taken up on social and conventional media, and ram home the message that Heathrow expansion is not only the wrong solution for our economy, it is politically undeliverable.
“A green light for Heathrow expansion is effectively a green light for a vast, foreign-owned and taxpayer-subsidised monopoly on one edge of our great city. It is astonishing that the idea is even in consideration, particularly given that freeing Gatwick from the BAA monopoly has worked wonders for the airport and its customers.
“We should invest in improving London’s surface connections, maximising rather than suffocating competition between three main airports. The Chancellor needs to stop being led by the lobby groups and think the issue through himself.”
John Stewart of anti-expansion group HACAN said: “Many people are hugely disappointed that David Cameron has gone back on his promise not to build a new runway at Heathrow. This ‘No ifs; no buts’ competition can highlight that.”
Mr Goldsmith, MP for Richmond Park and North Kingston, has been a thorn in the Tories’ side over Heathrow and has threatened to leave the party if they back a third runway.
In a council-run poll last May, almost three quarters of residents of Richmond, Hillingdon and Hounslow – some 100,000 respondents – opposed a third runway, However Heathrow said the survey was based on an outdated run proposal.
The closing date for video entries is 1st June.
More details about the competition can be found at www.no-ifs-no-buts.com
Amateur or professional, it’s your chance to be creative! Submit a video………anything up to 2 minutes long to show why Heathrow expansion is the wrong answer. The best 10 entries will be screened at the Richmond theatre in June in front of celebrity judges.
Actual text from Conservative election leaflet for the May 2010 election. Full leaflet at http://www.electionleaflets.org/leaflets/full/b58fa8c95aec5d810bfe2ebb16bcbf91/
The No Ifs No Buts website says:
Some facts to help you on your way:
Noise and air pollution:
- A plane lands at Heathrow every 90 seconds
- 725,000 people live under the Heathrow flight paths, that is, 28% of all people impacted by aircraft noise across Europe
- A 3rd runway would bring in around 260,000 extra flights a year
- Air Pollution levels in parts of West London already exceeds the European legal limits
- A 3rd runway would make Heathrow the biggest single emitter of CO2 – the climate change gas – in the UK
- Heathrow has 990 departure flights each week to the world’s key business centres. That is more than its two closest rivals, Charles de Gaulle (484) and Frankfurt (450), combined.
- More passengers fly in and out of London than any other city in the world. Paris, our nearest competitor, is in 5th place.
- London has 7 runways – more than all other European cities except Paris which has 8.
Heathrow is poorly used:
- Heathrow has the terminal capacity to accommodate at least another 20 million passengers a year.
- Of the top 10 destinations, by number of flights, only one, New York, is long haul. The rest are European or British destinations.
- On average there are 38 daily flights to Amsterdam, 36 to Frankfurt, 35 to Paris, 35 to Edinburgh, 29 to Manchester.
- Business trips are less than 20 per cent of the London passenger total
Case against the Hub airport:
- Growing numbers of experts believe a mega-hub at Heathrow is unnecessary and would inhibit competition and restrict choice.
- In 2008 David Cameron said; “The economic value of transfer passengers is hotly disputed – after all, they often spend only the price of a cup of coffee in the UK”.
- In 2009, David Cameron said: “There are now increasing grounds to believe that the economic case is flawed.”
- David Cameron later promised that if he were to become prime minister there would be no new runway at Heathrow, “no ifs, no buts”.
- Former Chief Executive of British Airways Bob Ayling told the Sunday Times in 2008 that a third runway would be “a costly mistake……against Britain’s economic interests”
- Paul Kehoe, chief executive of Birmingham Airport said: “Other countries, such as Germany, have a ‘multi-hub’ airport model – they link their major airports with high-speed rail, and spread the economic activity. They do not stick to the old-fashioned model of just one major airport.”
- In the past five years, there have been 260 emergency or urgent landings at Heathrow, roughly one per week, as a result of problems such as engine failure, fuel shortages.
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