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Councillors fear night flights will lead to extra Heathrow runway

Councillors fear night flights will lead to extra Heathrow runway

Justin Burns

Councillors fear night flights will lead to extra Heathrow runway

Concerned borough councillors fear a government consultation on night flights will lead to a third runway being built at Heathrow Airport.

Members of the Royal Borough's highways, transport and environment overview and scrutiny panel gave their views at Maidenhead town hall on Wednesday night.

They discussed central government's Night Flying Restrictions at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted: Stage 1 Consultation.

The first phase asks whether further evidence should be considered to assess the impact of the night flights regime on UK productivity and other issues.

Cllr Sinead Archer (Con, Belmont) said: "I do think the whole thing will just lead to another runway at Heathrow."

Panel chairman Richard Kellaway (Con, Bisham and Cookham), said there a 'distinct hint' of more pressure for two more runways to the west.

The borough wants a total ban on night flights between 11.30pm and 6am.

If government expansion plans go ahead it could see the number of night flights over the Windsor area doubled from about 1,470 to 3,150 every year.

The council has to submit a draft response on the first phase to the department of transport by Monday.  

The borough's cabinet will debate phase one on Thursday.

Stage two of the consultation is scheduled for the autumn when proposals such as the number of flights will be made before final plans are outlined in March.

Visit www.gov.uk/government/consultations/night-flights-consultation for more.

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