Heathrow Hub wins right to challenge third runway decision

Backers of an alternative scheme to a third runway at Heathrow have won the right to appeal a judgement made to quash opposition to the plans

Heathrow Hub, which is promoting expansion of the airport by extending the existing northern runway, was yesterday granted permission to appeal against an earlier High Court ruling.

The High Court rejected a challenge in May against the government’s decision to approve Heathrow’s £14 billion new runway by way of the airports National Policy Statement.

However, the Court of Appeal noted the “considerable importance of the issue raised” and “accepted the applicants’ grounds of appeal are properly arguable”.

The appeal proceedings are now due to start on October 21.

Heathrow Hub director Jock Lowe said: “We are delighted to have been granted permission to appeal.

“We didn’t agree with the previous judgement handed down on May 1, which was legally flawed, at odds with the evidence the court itself heard and gave us strong grounds to appeal.”

He added: “We continue to believe that the Department for Transport bungled the decision-making process for Heathrow expansion.

“Our extended runway proposal is cheaper, quieter, simpler and greener to build than Heathrow’s north west runway, which is bedevilled with complexity, increasingly expensive and incompatible with the new net zero carbon by 2050 target.

“Phased construction has always been a critical element of our proposal, leaving the government and regulators in control of environmental, noise and capacity levels.

“Despite the ongoing legal proceedings, an extended runway could still be operational much sooner than Heathrow airport’s north west runway scheme.”

A Heathrow spokesperson said at the time of the High Court ruling: “We are getting on with delivering the once-in-a-generation project that will connect Britain to global growth, providing thousands of new jobs and an economic boost for this country and its future generations.”


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