Over 90 MPs join all-party coalition to limit flights at Heathrow
Over 90 MPs have joined the all-party coalition, launched last week (1), calling for a limit on flight numbers at Heathrow (2). MPs who have signed up to the coalition include Government Ministers Tessa Jowell, John Hutton and Elliot Morley as well as Gwyneth Dunwoody, the Chair of the Transport Select Committee. Leading Conservatives John Redwood and Peter Lilley have also signed up. Nearly half the members of the Greater London Authority have joined the coalition (3).
John Stewart, the Chair of HACAN ClearSkies, which represents residents under the Heathrow flight path, said, “The response has been remarkable. It sends a strong message to the Government that Heathrow is big enough. Members of all parties, including the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Ulster Unionists, have joined the coalition. It demonstrates their concern that further expansion at Heathrow can only come at the expense of their regions”.
Stewart added, “After the local elections on May 2nd, we will be inviting local authorities in London and the Thames Valley to join the coalition. Questionnaires that we have sent out in key boroughs suggest we will get a good response (4)”.
Notes to Editors
The coalition was launched on Tuesday 16th April in Committee Room 10 of the House of Commons.
The coalition is calling for a ban on night flights at Heathrow and the cap on the number of day flights (480,000 per year), recommended by the Terminal Five Inspector Roy Vandermeer and endorsed by Secretary of State Stephen Byers when he gave permission for T5 to go ahead last November, to be adhered to.
Key MPs to sign up include Tessa Jowell (Lab, Dulwich & West Norwood), Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport; John Hutton (Lab, Barrow & Furness), Minister of State, Dept of Health; Elliot Morley (Lab, Scunthorpe), Parliamentary Under-secretary, DEFRA; former Conservative cabinet ministers John Redwood (Con, Wokingham) and Peter Lilley (Con, Hichen and Harpenden); Gywneth Dunwoody (Lab, Crewe), Chair, Transport Select Committee; Maclcolm Bruce (Lib Dem, Gordon), DEFRA Shadow Spokesperson.
MPs who have joined so far from London and the Thames Valley: John Mcdonnell (Lab Hayes and Harlington); Jenny Tonge (Lib Dem, Richmond Park); Michael Trend (Con, Windsor); Joan Ruddock (Lab, Lewisham Deptford); Tony Colman (Lab, Putney); Martin Linton (Lab, Battersea); Vincent Cable (Lib Dem, Twickenham); Tom Brake (Lib Dem, Carshalton & Wallington); Nigel Beard (Lab, Bexleyheath & Crayford); John Randall (Con, Uxbridge); Simon Hughes (Lib Dem, North Southwark and Bermondsey); Tessa Jowell (Lab, Dulwich & West Norwood); Rudolf Vis (Lab, Finchley and Golders Green); Iain Coleman (Lab Hammersmith & Fulham); Edward Davey (Lib Dem, Kingston & Surbiton); Ian Taylor (Esher & Walton); David Lidington (Con, Aylesbury); Bob Marshall-Andrews (Lab Medway); Sue Doughty (Lib Dem, Guildford); Clive Soley (Lab, Ealing Action & Shepherds Bush); John Redwood (Con, Wokingham); Jane Griffiths, (Lab, Reading East); Philip Hammond (Con Runnymede & Weybridge); Harry Cohen (Lab, Leyton & Wanstead); Sir Sydney Chapman (Con, Chipping Barnet)
GLA members who have joined so far: Sally Hamwee, Lib Dem, Chair GLA; Darren Johnson, Leader of the Green Party; Graham Tope, Lib Dem; Roger Evans (Con, Havering & Redbridge); Richard Barnes (Con, Ealing and Hillingdon) Samantha Heath, Lab; Meg Hillier (Lab, North East); Tony Arbour (Con, South West); Andrew Pelling (Con, Croydon & Sutton); Elizabeth Howlett (Con, Merton & Wandsworth)
HACAN ClearSkies has sent out a questionnaire to all candidates standing in the local elections in the boroughs of Richmond, Hounslow, Ealing and Southwark asking three questions: do you support a ban on night flights? do you support the 480,000 cap on day flights? do you oppose a 3rd runway. Of the questionnaires returned, 95% answered Yes to each question. Return rates: Ealing: 55% of candidates returned the questionnaire; Richmond, 25%; Hounslow, just over 20% and Southwark just under 20%.
For further information contact John Stewart on 0207 737 6641 or 07957 385650 (mobile).