Heathrow airport expansion backed in poll
Sunday 04 November 2012
UK holidaymakers and global tourist chiefs believe expanding Heathrow is the best way of solving Britain's airport capacity problems, according to a survey.
But while a third runway at Heathrow was the most popular choice, the "Boris island" Thames Estuary airport plan favoured by London Mayor Boris Johnson also received backing.
As many as 28% of holidaymakers plumped for Heathrow expansion while 25% backed the estuary plan in a survey by the organisers of the World Travel Market (WTM) which opens in London tomorrow.
Around 21% were in favour of expanding other airports such as Stansted, Gatwick and Luton.
Of 1,300 world tourist chiefs surveyed, 34% opted for expansion at Heathrow, with 20% backing the estuary airport scheme.
The survey results come as former Financial Services Authority chief Sir Howard Davies begins his Government-commissioned work into the UK's airport needs, with his full report due in summer 2015.
WTM director Simon Press said: "It is clear that senior travel executives from around the globe are in favour of expanding the UK's primary airport with a third runway at Heathrow.
"Expanding other airports in south-east England is more popular than building a new airport which suggests that our overseas colleagues think the UK Government should steer clear from an ambitious if expensive solution when there are better options available."
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