Hypocrisy in Tory opposition to third Heathrow runway


Click to follow

According to many members of the Conservative Party, one of the reasons for abandoning, or at least loosening our relationship with, the EU is that Britain needs to be free to spread its trading wings so it can do more business with the powerhouse economies of Asia and beyond.

Yet all too many of them are determined to frustrate the very thing that might help bring that business to these shores.

I’m talking, of course, about a third runway at Heathrow, of which Sir Howard Davies’s Airports Commission decisively found in favour. Unfortunately, he did leave the option of a second runway at Gatwick open, despite the fact that the Commission thinks that it would be more suited to providing commuter flights to… erm, Europe, rather than the tigers of Asia.

Naturally, business groups ranging from the CBI to the British Chambers of Commerce are demanding the builders get down to Heathrow. The TUC is with them.

They may find they’re ignored. The Government says it is working on a response, but even though Sir Howard has taken care to recommend safeguards such as a ban on night flights, environmental protections, limits on noise and an absolute no to a fourth runway, these haven’t proved nearly enough to placate a legion of  Tory critics.