Airport protesters outline 'destruction'

A DEMONSTRATION has been held to highlight the destruction which campaigners claim would be caused if permission was given to build a second runway at Stansted Airport.

Annie Davidson

A DEMONSTRATION has been held to highlight the destruction which campaigners claim would be caused if permission was given to build a second runway at Stansted Airport.

The “runway ramble” organised by the Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) campaign was supported by hundreds of people who walked across the countryside and through villages in Uttlesford which would be lost if the development goes ahead.

Protesters were supported by county and district councillors including Peter Martin, deputy leader of Essex County Council, and Uttlesford District Council's leader Jim Ketteridge and chairman Mark Lemon.


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There was a choice of three different routes during the seventh annual runway ramble which included areas of woodland which would be cut down and the villages of Molehill Green and Duton Hill, which would be partially lost.

A planning application has now been officially submitted to Uttlesford District Council by airport operator BAA and a public inquiry will be held in April next year.

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Stop Stansted Expansion chairman Peter Sanders said the second runway would not just affect the local area but the whole of East Anglia.

“While our focus today is on what would happen in the immediate vicinity of the airport in terms of the loss of homes and heritage, we must not forget that the impacts of a second runway would also extend across East Anglia,” he said.

“People in Essex, Hertfordshire, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire would all suffer from the increase in overflying that would result from the tripling of aircraft movements which BAA is seeking.

“They would also have to contend with greater pressure on the region's road and rail network because of the airport operators emphasis on encouraging passengers to travel to Stansted by road and its reluctance to invest in the rail service to accommodate the proposed expansion.”

Mr Martin also addressed the protestors to reinforce Essex County Council's outright opposition to the second runway plans.

The county council is a member of the CO2 Group - Councils Opposed to Second Runway - and will be playing an active role in the public inquiry which will be held to determine the application.

The event on Saturday came just two weeks before the deadline for the public to give their views on the second runway which is on September 26.

Protesters are urged to send objections to Uttlesford District Council (planning), London Road, Saffron Walden CB11 4ER, or by email to planning@uttlesford.gov.uk

BAA said it was committed to the second runway project which it said would provide “huge social and economic benefits” for the region. Bosses stressed they were could all they could “to limit, avoid and mitigate against any environmental impacts."

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