Rt Hon Lord Lilley

    Peter Lilley, MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, joined members of the Campaign Against Runway Expansion and local people taking part in the march last Sunday, 23 May, from Breachwood Green to Luton Airport to protest against the proposed expansion of Luton Airport.

    Peter Lilley: “It was very important to demonstrate that local opposition to the government?s misguided plans to expand Luton Airport to the size of Gatwick has not diminished. These would mean a jumbo jet a minute landing over Breachwood Green with all the attendant noise and pollution affecting the whole area between Hitchin and Harpenden. Even more damaging would be the extra 25 million passengers a year disgorged into Hertfordshire ? most of which would go onto the roads since Luton is the only London airport which does not have a direct rail link. I hope Transport Secretary, Alistair Darling, will take notice of the anger and distress locally that his proposals have caused and will think again about these plans.

    “We are currently waiting for the Court to decide whether the judicial review of the government?s decision – sought by local Councils, LADACAN and other groups – can go ahead. Given that the government?s latest proposal for Luton was different from either of those on which it consulted we believe there is a particularly strong case for reviewing the Luton process.

    “This march was specially for residents of local villages. Most of them accept there will be a continuing role for Luton airport ? but without building an extra kilometre of runway into Hertfordshire to take jumbo jets. The aim of the march was not to destroy the airport but to prevent a Gatwick sized airport destroying the surrounding villages.?