Firstly – a Happy New Year to you all!
You may be aware that as a result of a question asked by an Englefield Green resident, Runnymede Borough Council has now agreed to consider its position on Heathrow expansion. It will be discussed and voted on by all councillors (in attendance at the meeting) later this month.
Our council has claimed in the past that it backs Heathrow expansion due to the ‘economic benefit’ it would bring to the borough. These benefits have not been substantiated. Maybe you have seen the enormous amount of propaganda churned out of late by Heathrow, ‘Back Heathrow’ and Heathrow Hub claiming all sorts of spurious economic ‘benefits’ to local communities, for example up to 140,000 new jobs. To take this one particular point to task: as unemployment in the areas around Heathrow is at 5% (Runnymede stats show some 400 on unemployment benefit), it is clear that these jobs could not be filled by those already living in the borough. An influx of workers would put a tremendous strain on existing infrastructure (housing, health services etc.) not to mention the impact of extra traffic on roads and motorways too.
The reality of expansion would mean flight movements increasing from 480,000 to 740,000 a year. Heathrow are, apparently, already putting together the case for a fourth runway.
If the issue of Heathrow expansion is of concern to you please do all you can to attend the meeting at the Council Offices on Station Road, Addlestone, Surrey KT15 2AH on 22/1/15 at 1930. Please also encourage your friends, neighbours and family to attend – it’s really important to have a good showing!
Please also let your local councillors know your feelings about Heathrow expansion (and the detrimental effect it would have on you, your family and the enjoyment of your home, garden and village life) in advance of the meeting so that they can correctly represent YOU when voting.