Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Welcome to Boris Johnson International Airport...

Boris Johnson will have spoken for thousands today when he related his awful experience of Gatwick Airport in his Telegraph column today. He ends his column with these hopefully prophetic words...

It is ever more urgent that we investigate the possibility of a long-term solution, in the form of a new and more eco-friendly airport at a site in the Thames estuary - of which you will be hearing a lot more in due course.
I wonder what he meant by that. I hope he meant that as London mayor he will back such an enterprise. In the 1990s a company called Marinair came up with an innovative plan to build an airport slap bang in the middle of the Thames estuary. Now is the time for them to dust it off, revive it and spark a real national debate about its feasibility.

But the debate cannot last forever. Heathrow and Gatwick are at bursting point. If London wants to remain a pre-eminent world city it needs airports to match its ambition. If the capacity cannot be provided at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted it has to be found elsewhere.

So in 2017 I look forward to hearing the captain of my plane telling us through the intercom: "Ladies and Gentlemen, we're about to land at London's Boris Johnson International Airport..."

Every successful politician leaves a legacy. This can be Boris's!

87 comments:

bergen said...

I remember that there was an intention to build a third London airport there over 40 years ago (Foulness or Maplin?).It was failed on environmental grounds even in those days.God knows what the greens would say now.

Anonymous said...

I know just what he means and Landisde is even worse.

Last year we flew out of Gatwick. At one point as we came down in the lift the doors opened in the Departures hall. The sheer mass of people queuing and crammed into the space was so huge we couldn't get out of the lift. It was like a scene from Dante's Inferno. Children screaming, people jostling and pushing and arguments breaking out

Stansted is even worse and its almost in hoc to Ryanair now. Have you seen the Ryanair tactic at Stansted of just physically pushing entire queues sideways to force them to merge when they need a clear check in desk?

We need more airport capacity. What we have is a disgrace and BAA are allowed monopoly powers. Why?

Anonymous said...

You forget that most people in the UK have to travel to Heathrow for their longhaul flights. Moving Heathrow to Medway woulde just increase that travel time and travel distance.

Why not merge just up the road Northolt into Heathrow? It would provide an instant third runway and even possibly consider Farnborough.

W

Anonymous said...

Iain, as someone who has worked on the Thames Estuary airport plans, particularly the suggestion of Cliffe, I'm sorry to tell you that you're totally misguided in your support for it.

You can't just 'plonk' an airport in the middle of an estuary, build a few transport routes, and expect it to work marvelously.

One of the main reasons for refusing a site like Cliffe was the very, very high risk of bird strikes. The TE is very heavily populated by birds with considerable seasonal variation. Things have not changed on this front.

I for one would rather be flying above a housing estate in Heathrow with a tiny bird strike risk than trying to land over an estuary with an RSPB reserve right below me.

Andy said...

There's a perfectly good airport, capable of expansion, already on the Thames Estuary - www.southendairport.com.

stuart said...

What about London BoJo International?

Unsworth said...

Well Boris has mentioned this proposal several times before. Personally I think it's an ideal location. Fighting one's way into and out of Heathrow is a gruelling experience. The great advantage of siting a new airport in the Estuary area is that one starts with a relatively clean sheet, making for faster design and build with less in the way of planning inquiries etc. Ebbsfleet is close to hand, too.

Don't expect much enthusiasm from British Airways, though. They've just spent a bundle of cash on the Terminal 5 shambles.

Letters From A Tory said...

Hmmm, doesn't quite have the same 'ring' as JFK International - but a nice suggestion.

There is no way that more money should be poured into Heathrow or Gatwick, and while we're at it can we please break up the BAA monopoly.

Anonymous said...

yes Iain

"we are landing at Boris Johnson International airport, we will then be taxi-ing to the Ken Livingston Terminal. For those of you traveling into London you can make your way to the Lee Jasper Express where you will be shaken down"

For those of you going by coach the John Prescott express coach has an excellent service which includes free copies of the founders biography.

Welcome to London"

Mike said...

Indeed, the Marinair proposal is on the internet for all to see.

Marinair proposal

Seems eminently sensible to me, especially when Crossrail is completed.

LHR, LGW and STN could be kept up and running in separate hands.

Devil's Kitchen said...

We could have an airport nearer the centre of London, in the Docklands area perhaps, and it could be served by the DLR.

We could call it "London City Airport".

Oh, hang on...

DK

manc_ill_kid said...

Would it not just be more cost-effective to cut the number of flights into and out of Heathrow and Gatwick to relieve the pressure a wee bit?

Anonymous said...

What do you mean you wonder what he meant by that? Pay attention Iain, Boris was wittering on about this throughout his campaign.

Johnny Norfolk said...

Just another example of the slide down in Labours Britain.
Only 2 more years max.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry but our great country is on the edge of medocrity.

If we do not make a stand against the Russians and their disgraceful surge into Georgia, then that disgrace will be felt by us all.

Margaret Thatcher would, I have no doubt, have come out fighting and taken on the Russians. She would, most certainly, have come out backing -with even stronger language- President Bush's fine words. BUT she would have demanded action.

To be fair, Tony Blair would have come out immediately supporting President Bush.

David Cameron, in a live interview, came out with a fairly strong line against the Russians.

Then came our Prime Minister! The man of courage - making the big decisions - for the country! In a written press release, which means that it was written by someone other than him!

Today our 'interests' are with the French President and the Foreign Secretary of Finland! Where were they in Iraq and Afghanistan?

I ask because Georgia was alongside us!

This is a problem on our doorstep and one which should be answered with a massive threat from the EU. But can you honestly believe that the EU can ever agree on a collective statement?

IF this is not challenged you can forget about the Boris Johnstone International Airport.It would be taken out by the russians immediately.

What would that great saviour of us all, Obama, do? That and Brown's typical locked in his bunker approach, should WORRY the pants of everyone.

Come back Maggie your Country needs you!

Roger Thornhill said...

I have been banging on about this for ages.

Having lived in HK and used their wonderful BRITISH DESIGNED airport built on a man-made island extension, linked to the city centre (it would be like arriving in Moorgate) by a wonderful 27minute high speed railway that you can SEE from the arrivals meeting area.

Heathrow is a massive death toll waiting to happen. Planes fly over densly populated areas constantly. It is not just "a housing estate in Heathrow" but Hayes, Southall, Ealing, Chiswick, Acton, Hammersmith, Barnes and right across the capital. It is only a matter of time before a plane belly-flops into these densely populated areas.

It is a no-brainer to move to Cliffe or thereabouts. They should also built a commuter line alongside the high speed line (while they are about it) and build a few stations, re-zone the land around it to permit housing and just let people get on with it - no Stalinist "new town" planning. Just let London grow as it has done for 150+ years.

Janus said...

For all those still unsure, Tory talk of halting Heathrow expansion is not environmentalism. The overarching aim is to maintain expansion elsewhere in London, preferably out of earshot of a conservative constituency.

Auntie Flo' said...

Thank you, Boris and Iain for backing an offshore airport for UK.

The lives of 100,000s of us are already blighted by Blair, Brown and Darling's insane expansion of Stansted and Heathrow and we cannot take any more.

We can't have normal family lives, can't concentrate, can't work at home, can't listen to radios or TV, can't go in our gardens in Summer.

Our children's education is damaged, our sleep is disturbed - up to 16 times a night - and our health is damaged by noise and air pollution.

Offshore is the only rational, environmentally sustainable, zero cost to the public purse and just solution to the issue of airport undercapacity.

Japan has successfully adopted this solution at Tokoname, recognising that this is the only sustainable solution for small islands and for human beings.

Blue Eyes said...

Given this country's recent record on infrastructure projects, the rail link would reach the airport thirty years after completion...

Alex said...

Half the problem is getting to and from the airport and putting something in the Thames estuary doesnt help unless there are transport links. The trouble is that the people responsible for the airports are very London-centric, hence great links from Heathrow to Paddington and perhaps Crosslink, from Gatwick to Victoria, from Stansted to the M11 and Liverpool Street and from London City to the DLR, but nothing to the rest of the world.

The solution is to divert the Thames round the south of London, using the thoroughfare that will run through the centre - the BoJo super highway for road and rail.

Mark Adams said...

Which planet will this new airport be on Iain? Certainly not this one - and definitely not before 2017!pg

Anonymous said...

Wasn't this idea in fact from Kit Malthouse? Oh, wait a minute, that's how Boris operates isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for removing that terrible ad at the top of the page it was doing my head in.

Anonymous said...

Vote Blue, Go Green

Marquee Mark said...

Also, looking forward to the naming of the Gordon Brown Municipal Tip - "more rubbish than you ever imagined"!

Anonymous said...

The solution to overcrowding at airports is for everyone to do less flying.

I look forward to the days of deep recession like the period 1990 - 1995 when I could breeze through Heathrow and onto a plane and have a good experience with happy friendly staff, decent food and take off on time. In those days people only flew who really had to for business and a foreign holiday was a once a year experience.

As a country, we are addicted to pointless travel and we should do less of it. I used to work as management consultant and in banking too and I can say most overseas trips were a pointless waste of time.

Politicians have caught the bug too - think of all the summits and overseas conferences we have now. In the old days a summit happened once every five years and real ground breaking agreements were reached. Now they just fly around making pointless platitudes in press releases.

I am no environmentalist of anti capitalist but I gave up working for others a decade ago, have no car and travel once or twice a year only on a plane. The rest gets done on the internet and I feel happier, healthier and better off financially.

Desperate Dan said...

Boris must somehow have escaped the next phase of the nightmare - waiting in an ill-disciplined queue to catch a bus back to the car park. The bus rarely sticks to its schedule and is invariably late and the queue at the car park office to almost as bad as passport control.
(In my case my mood was not enhanced by finding that the credit cards I'd spent the first two days of the holiday reporting lost/stolen via various difficult international phone links, were in fact on the floor inside the car).

Auntie Flo' said...

Mark Adams said...

Which planet will this new airport be on Iain? Certainly not this one - and definitely not before 2017!


Which airport will you fly from when desperation leads the people of Heathrow to hold regular marches which block the roads around the airports? We've already done this, by the way.

You are the one on another planet, Mark Adams, the planet where uncontrolled greed and self interest makes it ok to destroy the lives of many 100,000s of others, damage children's health and education.

But that's alright, eh, as long as you get to go to Benidorm from the airport nearest you?

Auntie Flo' said...

Blue Eyes said...

Given this country's recent record on infrastructure projects, the rail link would reach the airport thirty years after completion...



Nope. BAA Stansted got their M11 and other links to Stansted completed sharpish and the M11 is being widened solely for the benefit of Stansted airport.

The aviation industry has huge clout in this country, they get what they want...mind you, might a million pounds chucked at MPs in free airport parking just be a factor in that?

Auntie Flo' said...

Woops, I meant to write:

Which airport will you fly from when desperation leads the people of Heathrow **and Stansted** to hold regular marches which block the roads around the airports? We've already done this, by the way.

I've already taken part in traffic blocking marches on Stansted - with police escorts, of course, the more the merrier - and will do so again.

Anonymous said...

Recently used Terminal 5 at Heathrow - what a tremendous building!

Easy to get to via Heathrow Express, good service too.

Build that 3rd runway.

[PS vacation traveller with no connection with BA, BAA or that Blair-lite tosser Branson]

Auntie Flo' said...

Anon said:

Politicians have caught the [pointless travel] bug too - think of all the summits and overseas conferences we have now. In the old days a summit happened once every five years and real ground breaking agreements were reached. Now they just fly around making pointless platitudes in press releases.


Exactly. And who is one of our most travel/oil guzzling and emission belching politcians?

Mr Millionaire Miliband!

Have you seen how many pointless overseas trips he's made this year alone?

Miliband even travelled to Japan (G8) to give a speech to a hundred bloggers!

Is Millionaire Miliband:

a. mental?
b: greedy
c: a rampant egotist
d: or can't he stand UK?

Auntie Flo' said...

supposedly anon said:

Build that 3rd runway.

[PS vacation traveller with no connection with BA, BAA or that Blair-lite tosser Branson]


You are either Dirty Man of Europe, Alastair Darling, or one of the government's dft staff.

How many thousands of pounds worth of free airport parking did BAA give you then?

Anonymous said...

This proposal is hopelessly naive. Maplin Sands was examined in detail and rejected. Cliffe was looked at in 2001-03, and rejected. The RSPB (lest we forget the largest membership organisation in the UK) has said this airport would be the most destructive development in the history of the UK.

The Tories would have every green protestor in the land coming together to oppose this.

Terminal 5 took 23 years from conceoption to delivery because of the planning process. How on earth are we going to deliver a new hub airport, housing, high speed rail links (you'll need more than one to carry so many passengers) this easily?

Plus Heathrow would have to shut - what future for the 72,000 people directly employed at the airport? Also, you cannot have more than one hub airport. The land at Heathrow is dreadful and polluted. Also, people say 'we'll use the land to build housing' - er, West London is propserous partly because of the airport. Take it away and the area becomes far less important.

Furthermore, Kent CC (tory-run) opposed the Cliffe development. They would again. Also, who on earth is gpoing to pay for it??? The investment of £30bn would not see any return for at least 15-20 years. Who would make that investment without significant help from the taxpayer.

If you want to solve the capacity issues in London and the South East, build a new runway at Heathrow, with a condition that no further development of the area can ever take place.

Anonymous said...

Er, Aunt Flo - check your facts. BAA has not provided free car parking for MPs since 2003. MPs still moan about it even now.

will the labour voters please stand up said...

maybe we can expand in a direction where only the chavs are troubled by the pollution

or we could target all the retards who voted labour and ensure their lives are blighted by daily pollution much like the rest of us as we contend with nu labour slow destruction of the ingerrlaand

Glyn H said...

We certainly need more capacity and the H'row third runway ought to be built to increase safety as much as anything; Stanstead is already huge but could be enlarged; the decent bit of Essex really only really starts near to Suffolk. As to Cliffe (ideal; mainly its only low quality ground ) or the full Estuary idea - get rid of the birds. There are far to many seagulls in this country as it is and just like the oil in Alaska the animals will have to push off somewhere else; as has happened with both human and animal populations over millenia, until these ghastly lefty, menacing (we'll scratch your eyes out if you earn money except from the state) envoironmental creeps got their noses in the pulic money trough!

Auntie Flo' said...

Why are so many department of transport ministers Scots and in Ruth Kelly's case, Irish and so few from the South East of England?

It couldn't have something to do with Blair's/Brown's aim of dumping as much unsustainable airport expansion - and unsustainably massive migration and housing development - on SE England, could it?

And why SE England?

Because that's the Conservative heartlands?

Pablito said...

Have to agree with Anon 11:52

Terminal 5 was spot on. Landed from LA a few days after it had opened , collected my bags and was on the tube within about 30 minutes of the wheels having touched down

Nice building as well - light and airy without too many retail outlets shoved into it

Checking in was also an absolute breeze

I can understand that I may have been lucky, but now that the problems are being ironed out, the terminal will be great. This is how airports should be.

frequent flier said...

If you want to see what a proper terminal should look like, go and visit the new one opened at Changi (Singapore) 2 weeks ago. I am sure the architectual drawings can be located in a drawer there somewhere, so no need to do all that uneccessary work again.

Anonymous said...

Won't Boris be PM by 2017?

Auntie Flo' said...

Glyn H said:

Stanstead is already huge but could be enlarged; the decent bit of Essex really only really starts near to Suffolk.


Glyn, you're fantasising.

Two Stansted Public Inquiries and a Royal Commission in the course of the last 30 years have ruled against Stansted expanding beyond a single runway, most recently in the 1980s when it was judged an "environmental catastrophe".

Inspector, Graham Eyre QC (later Sir Graham Eyre):

"I would not be debasing the currency if I express my judgement that the development of an airport at Stansted, with a capacity in excess of 25mppa and requiring the construction and operation of a second runway and all the structural and operational paraphernalia of a modern international airport as we know the animal in 1984, would constitute nothing less than a catastrophe in environmental terms." [Chapter 25.12.12]

"I take so strong a view on this aspect that if I believed, as so many do, that a grant of planning permission for an expansion of Stansted to a capacity of 15mppa would inexorably lead to unlimited and unidentifiable airport development in the future to an unknown capacity, I would, without hesitation, unequivocally recommend the rejection of BAA's current application in relation to the main site." [Chapter 25.12.13]

"In the absence of such a declaration or other mechanism designed to demonstrate and ensure that a second runway at Stansted will not be constructed I would recommend that the application referred to in paragraph 1.1 above be refused." [Chapter 60.1.3]

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous said...

Er, Aunt Flo - check your facts. BAA has not provided free car parking for MPs since 2003. MPs still moan about it even now.


Exactly, right in the middle of the bogus consultation on the SERAS Report on airport expansion.

Stop avoiding the question, anon, how much was free parking did you get?

Auntie Flo' said...

From: "The cash-for-runways scandal"

BAA is amongst the biggest donors to the Labour, LibDem and Conservative Parties

1.1 Between February 2001 and September 2002 BAA made in-kind political donations of over £1.1 million. Labour received £525,830 of this, the Conservative Party £441,907 and the Liberal Democrats £114,083.

1.2 BAA is:

Labour’s 9th biggest donor.

Conservative Party’s 7th biggest donor.

The Liberal Democrats’ 4th biggest donor.

2. The Manchester airport donations scandal

Manchester Airport plc has made in-kind donations that would probably pay for Labour’s local election campaign throughout the North West region.

Between February 2001 and October 2002 donations from Manchester airport to Labour totalled £271,723.02. Manchester airport is now Labour's 21st biggest donor.

Of this, £60,000 were cash donations. This sum dwarfed British Airways’ donations to the Labour Party, and would fund the election campaign of all 34 Labour candidates in Manchester in the 1 May 2003 elections almost three times over. (The maximum sum those 34 candidates can legally spend in totals £23,446.32, but this is likely to be more than Labour actually spends.)

What’s worse about the Manchester situation is that manchester Airport plc is publicly owned, being the property jointly of the ten boroughs in Greater Manchester. Manchester city council, which is Labour-run, owns 55% of the shares and thus has the controlling influence.

In effect, an airport under the control of a Labour council has made in-kind donations to Labour of over £200,000, plus £60,000 in cash, from money that really belongs to the public. Around the time of these donations, Manchester airport bosses awarded themselves an 86% pay increase.

In-kind donations – perks for MPs. The bulk of the aviation industry’s donations to political parties (which now need to be declared under the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act) are in-kind donations in the form of free airport car parking.

Both Manchester Airport plc and BAA plc provided free airport car parking to all MP’s regardless of their party. At Manchester airport the bulk of the £211,723.02 total value of car parking passes goes to Labour, reflecting the number of MPs they have in the catchment area of the airport.

At BAA the value of each pass is listed at over £5000. The bulk of the £1,123,782.90 total value of car parking passes goes to Labour, reflecting their dominance in House of Commons.

http://216.239.59.104/search?q=cache:8ck0tl4zT4QJ:www.greenparty.org.uk/files/reports/2003/airport%2520donations%25201.htm+BAA+donations+to+labour&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=uk

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"The RSPB (lest we forget the largest membership organisation in the UK) ..."

What about the National Trust - 3.5 million compared with the RSPB's 1 million?

Auntie Flo' said...

Glyn H said...

We certainly need more capacity and the H'row third runway ought to be built to increase safety as much as anything; Stanstead is already huge but could be enlarged


I take it then that you are one of the 4% of frequent flyers who actually gain from cheap flights?

Because the rest of us, those who fly just a few times a year or never, pay more in tax subsibidies to keep aviation in tax and VAT free fuel, aircraft and duty free commodity sales priviledges than we ever recoup from cheap flights and duty free.

And what is the benefit to UK as whole from aviation?

Zero.

1. A rising UK aviation balance of payments deficit of £billions per annum.

2. Environmental and health damage costing UK £billions per annum.

3. Subsidy of the very richest at the expense of the poorest, a large proportion of whom never fly.

4. Damage to a major UK industry that does pay its way:

unsubsidised domestic tourism

which employs a million people, a far greater number than aviation and which makes a balance of payments profit for UK.

Martin said...

It's not just building the airport, but the road and rail links that are needed. The problem with politicians is they all love the "big project" and the posing that goes on, but they are less interested in the stuff that really makes things work.

Take Wembley Stadium. Building it where it is was the biggest mistake because the road links are crap.

There is a great (an under used) high speed rail link in Kent. Once South East trains get their finger out Ashford to London will be 35 minutes.

Why not expand Manston and build a spur to the High speed link?

The fact is no one wants an airport in their back garden.

However, these people( I call them the Volvo brigade) oppose the building of anything near 'their' homes (power stations, railway lines, airports, roads) but happily use those very same facilities that go past other people's homes.

The French have a totally oppose view.

I'd happily see Lydd Airport expanded, but the Nimbie's won't have it.

Kezzie said...

London's Boris Johnson International Airport

Go, Boris!

Bring it on. No more pollution or damage to our environment.

I, and young people like me, would love to fly from sustainable airports.

Show new Labour how to build really sustainable industries.

No more pollution of over our towns!

Kezzie said...

Pablito said:

Terminal 5 was spot on. Landed from LA a few days after it had opened , collected my bags and was on the tube within about 30 minutes of the wheels having touched down


That's because we're in a recession Pablito. Aviation was so hard hit during the last recession and Heathrow had so much over capacity that around 25% of Heathrow's staff were made redundant.

Same thing's happening now.

Auntie Flo' said...

Martin said:

these people( I call them the Volvo brigade) oppose the building of anything near 'their' homes (power stations, railway lines, airports, roads) but happily use those very same facilities that go past other people's homes.


You're talking nonsense, Martin.

1. I haven't flown in over 12 years.

2. When did you last fly?

3. Fly from Stansted belching carcinogens down on me and my family too, do you? Happy to do that? Hypocrite!

2. Stansted and Heathrow both have large motorways.

So, you point is?

Come into the 21st century, peabrain.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Aunty Flo and other angry Heathrow residents, but when you decided to live next to an airport what exactly where you expecting? Learn to live with the consequences of your actions.

Anonymous said...

I can corroborate Anon 9.19's views. I also worked on the estuarial airport case and it is critically flawed. No-one will fund it - whenever the various promoters are challenged to demonstrate that they have backing they run for cover - and when we surveyed airlines, only one rather minor carrier was interested in moving there. Add to that the Air Traffic Control problems (the runway would be directly in line with Heathrow's) and the habitat impacts and it is a non-starter. Yes, it's a great NIMBY site, but that's about all.

Auntie Flo' said...

Aviation tourism's balance of payment's deficit

£18 billion in 2005!


x 2 by 2020


Cost of CO2 emissions (as per Stern Report) 2005 levels


£3.2 to £6.3 billion


x 2 by 2020


Aviation's fuel tax subsidy from taxpayers 2005


£5.7 billion per year.


++ x 2 by 2020


Aviation's VAT subsidy from taxpayers Pa:


£4 billion


x 2 by 2020


Plus £billions in environmental and health costs.

Solely to subisdise the 4% super rich.

Are we insane?

Anonymous said...

Auntie Flo

You have answered the point I actually made: BAA NO LONGER GIVES FREE PARKING PASSES TO MPS and has not since 2003/04.

Fact. Call the House of Commons authorities.

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Aunty Flo and other Heathrow residents, when you decided to live next to an airport what exactly where you expecting? Learn to live with the consequences of your actions.


Sorry, Mr DfT:

1. I've lived 10 miles from Stansted for 50 years

2. Stansted was expanded, after a corrupt consultation, by your crooked govt 5
years ago.

3. The Royal Commission in 1984 gave undertakings Stansted would not be expanded.

4. Because it would be an environmental disaster

4. Your govt reneged on those undertakings.

5. NO ONE deserves to be woken up 16 times a night by aircraft noise as the people of Heathrow were found to be by reseach for the Heathrow nigth flights case.

6. Your govt got the court ban on night flights between 11pm and 5am reversed because your govt is inhuman and gives not a damn about working people

7. UK govt noise guidelines breach WHO requirements

8. Your govt forces 95% of us, including the poorest, to subsidise the super rich 4% of frequent flyers (including politicians, like you) w2ho are the only ones who benefit fromt his.

9. 95% pay far more extra tax to subsidise aviation and the super rich, likre politicians, than we ever recoup in cheap flights.

10. All for a massive aviation tourism balance of payments loss.

Anonymous said...

Auntie Flo, the information about free parking for MPs at BAA airports on your link is out of date. See Daily Telegraph.

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous said...

I can corroborate Anon 9.19's views. I also worked on the estuarial airport case and it is critically flawed. No-one will fund it...


Rubbish.

Exactly the same, totally bogus, claims were made by frightened 19th century airport operators re the plans for the offshore airport in Japan

Tokoname is now one of Japan's top airports.

What a lot of DfT and BAA anons are crawling out of the woodwork today.

Next point?

Auntie Flo' said...

Vehicle Duty 2002/3


£42 Billion


after road investments:


£38 Billion


Aviation duty:


£900 million


Emissions from planes:


"Only 6% of total"

(Miliband on Paxman)

x 2 by 2020


Why subsidise the 4% richest - the frequent flyers, like the Blairs - when we should and could be cutting vehicle fuel tax?

What do your prefer to do, drive or pay for the Blair's and Miliband's aviation fuel tax?

Madness

Yak40 said...

What would that great saviour of us all, Obama, do?

He said strongly that there should be a UN Security Council resolution ASAP, apparently forgetting the Russians could veto it....

Penfold said...

Whaddaya mean London BJ Intl Airport.
Marinair is the old Maplin and Shoeburyness projects of yore.
Whatever it's called and whether on land or in the middle of the Thames estuary on a wretched mudbank, it will be adjacent to Southend. So, we should not be calling it London anything, by any stretch of the imagination, rather like calling Bournemouth or Southampton airports London South'ish.

Anonymous said...

I have lived near Stansted all my life and know that the Airport and flights can be a real pain in the 'hole, believe me. I sometimes wish they could crush the cars that are left littering Stortford cos the occupants couldn't be bothered to cough up more cash to park than their flights cost. To be fair, it is also handy for seeing various members of my family who have escaped Brown's Britain (lucky "/&#¤"#s!) so it isn't all bad (for me at least I guess you'll say.)

One issue, though, that is starting to really get to me (with apologies, Auntie 'Flo):

THE LACK OF A TAX ON SOMETHING IS NOT A &%#¤ING SUBSIDY!!

Ahh, that's better! If we start accepting as given what the statists/ Leftists accept then we're lost before we've started.

Duty Free shows us what punitive levels of taxation are being wrought out of hard working, sometimes poor Britons for the greater glory of the state. For that alone it should stay.

If we are to charge taxes on Aviation fuel, who gets the money? What will we spend it on? See where this is going? Can't say I relish more of my cash going down Brown's toilet...

Anonymous said...

The trouble is that business flyers come from the M4 corridor, southern West Midlands and the West side of the capital.

That also means they have to use their cars.

Shifting eastwards would only help the City boys, not most business flyers who would then have to drive right around the M25 and squeeze across the estuary.

Heathrow's situation has driven the positioning of businesses over decades - shifting the whole lot to other side of capital won't work.

Of course, I hate 'deathrow' as much as anyone and I live right under the flight path, just at the point the planes start to scream as they decelerate....

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous said...
Auntie Flo

You have answered the point I actually made: BAA NO LONGER GIVES FREE PARKING PASSES TO MPS and has not since 2003/04.

Fact. Call the House of Commons authorities.


Coy, Anon?

Why don't you want to answer my question?

How much free parking did you receive in handouts during the free airport parking scandal?

judith said...

Actually, the beautiful part of Essex starts just before you get to Stansted (coming from London).

Try walking around Thaxted whilst jets appear to be trying to cut off local chimneys.

Auntie Flo' said...

Anon shouted:

THE LACK OF A TAX ON SOMETHING IS NOT A &%#¤ING SUBSIDY!!


Anon (BAA's PA dept)

The govt levies £x billions tax income.

If the govt decides to exempt you from fuel tax and VAT tomorrow...who do you think will pay your share?

1. Little green men?
2. God
3. or the rest of us

It's the same with businesses.

In allowing aviation a unique, privileged tax and VAT exempt status, the govt decrees that the rest of us must pay their share.

Let's say there are were 100 businesses in UK, each paying £50,000 tax and VAT and the govt receives £5 million in tax/VAT from all of them.

The govt then decides to exempt one of them: aviation from tax and VAT.

The other 99 businesses must then pay £500 extra tax each pa to make up for the tax lost by aviation's exemption.

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous said...

business flyers come from the M4 corridor, southern West Midlands and the West side of the capital.
........

Dear BAA and/or DfT,

Nonsense.

........


Shifting eastwards would only help the City boys, not most business flyers who would then have to drive right around the M25 and squeeze across the estuary.

........

Easily solved. Expand airports, housing and migration on your doorstep - not ours.

Auntie said...

If we are to charge taxes on Aviation fuel, who gets the money? What will we spend it on? See where this is going? Can't say I relish more of my cash going down Brown's toilet...


Dear BAA PA,

1. We all pay £1000-£2000 less tax per year.

2. You spend yours on air travel if you want

3. I spend mine on petrol

4. The poorest spend theirs on air travel, food or whatever they want to

4. The richest 4%, who can well afford it, will pay more for their weekly return flights than they save in lower tax.

Anon #437 said...

Auntie, Auntie, Calm down dear!

As to your assumptions:

1) I'm not a BAA PA (nice try tho'!) Just someone who lives near an airport and occasionally likes to travel & thanks for letting me spend my money as I see fit BTW. :-)
2) If you think that the USA, Russia, China et al are going to let us keep the tax from a flight to, or over their territory then you are deluded. Once the "no tax" deal (not just the UK) has been broken every b*gger will want a slice of the pie. Not just us that made this 'subsidy'.
3)Nice lesson in maths. Let's try the meaning of the word subsidy: If the companies in your example paid the £500 and the government gave Aviation the £500 directly, then this is a subsidy- see trains which really do get public money (and IIRC, don't pay tax on their fuel). To recieve diddly squat in public funds = no subsidy. Government income is not some right, fixed quantity and so is neither 'my' share. Whether Aviation should be taxed is subjective, sure, as is income and all tax rates. Couldn't the Government just live without a couple of Tax credit screw ups and spend less cash....
4) If you think that Brown & co will tax us a couple of thousand less a year, I have what you're having!! ;-)

Pablito said...

Thanks Kezzie but you're incorrect.

My flight was entirely full. As were a number who landed at the same time. (Also, this was in March when we had yet to really realise the extent of the crap the economy was in)

LAX on the other hand was a screaming nightmare

I did Terminal 3 the other week, still very busy despite the resession, and it was awful

Terminal 5 is a well-designed and planned building. BA just ballsed up the opening badly

James said...

A new airport is a bit beyond our Boris, I think. A new Daily Telegraph article about one is about right. Hang on though isn't he paid to be running City Hall?

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately there's no viable way to extend the runways at Southend. Big question is what BoJo has done to follow up his disgust with the paella-eaters who run his London Gatwick airport?

Anonymous said...

What's so wrong with building lots of runways at Heathrow? It's not as if the locals were not aware that the airport existed and was going to get bigger. The whole area is a sh1t tip anyway, so any well maintained and litter free strip of tarmac can only be an improvement.

Londoner said...

Desparate Dan says Boris left out the bit about getting to the car park.

One has to assume, as Boris lives in London, that he had the sense to take the very good train service back to Victoria. The Express is quite expensive (although I doubt as expensive as a car park for a week or two) but at most times of the day you can get the local train which takes a little longer but is much cheaper.

Londoner said...

Nice to see for once that Iain is praising something Boris has said or done. Perhaps my previous complaints of his never-ending negativity on Boris have been heeded.

A recent Anon posting, in reference to Heathrow states: "The whole area is a sh1t tip anyway". Charming. But the whole point about the unsuitability of Heathrow getting anywhere near its present size is not about the immediate area but about the fact that prevailing winds mean that a large swathe of densely populated London is adversely affected by aircraft noise. At present this is mostly south west London (tell Richmond, Twickenham and Barnes that they are "s... tips" - not that the desirability of the area is really the issue, it is the vastly greater number of people (in as far as Kennington and Battersea) that it affects than it would if Stansted were expanded). With the new runway it has now been announced that there will be new flight paths over much of north London as well.

I do not have the expertise to opine on the practicality of a new airport on the Thames estuary but it is certainly greatly desirable if it can be done. Most major cities have realised that it is best to have airports on the side of the city that prevailing winds mean less overflying of the city itself. Also, technology moves on so just because Maplin was rejected in the 1970s (mostly, as I recall, for public expenditure reasons as it would have been State-financed) does not mean we could not do it in the 21st century. You could also make the new airport almost exclusively one that you had to go to by public transport, by having a radial network of stations and car parks 30 to 50 miles from it, as well as superfast connections from central London and, through Crossrail, from the Thames Valley beyond.

I don't actually think that it is likely to be economic for it totally to replace Heathrow but you could certainly greatly reduce its capacity, including by not replacing the older terminals.

Auntie Flo' said...

Anon 437 said:

the meaning of the word subsidy: If the companies in your example paid the £500 and the government gave Aviation the £500 directly, then this is a subsidy- see trains which really do get public money (and IIRC, don't pay tax on their fuel). To recieve diddly squat in public funds = no subsidy.


So, if the govt exempts me from paying income tax, I'm no better off as a result and the rest of you aren't subsidising me?

Sorry anon, when, in 2005 alone, the govt exempted aviation from

£5.7 billion fuel tax
and £4 billion VAT

the saving aviation consequently made was a massive tax and VAT subsidy.

The govt received £63.5 billion VAT alone in 2002-2003, £4 billion of which should have been paid by aviation.

All tax and duty payers paid a higher rate of tax and VAT as a direct result of aviation's subsidy - to compensate for the £9.7 billion black hole the subsidy left in the treasury's accounts.

Anonymous said...

Auntie Flo,

Your entries are usually interesting but are often difficult to unravel.

When you are quoting someone else then it is helpful to use quotes "...".

Also, it would help if you had fewer blank lines.

Anonymous said...

I think we should expand Gatwick and modernise the facilities there. The flight path is over farmland, it has good transport connections to London (though they would have to be improved) and it wouldn't need billions and billions to reclaim land. It could be done for much less than putting a third runway on Heathrow. There's an agreement in place that BAA won't, but only until 2019, and given how long airports take to expand, that's when construction would probably begin anyway.

Anonymous said...

Stick it in Tunbridge Wells!!

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous said..

Auntie Flo,

"Your entries are usually interesting but are often difficult to unravel.
When you are quoting someone else then it is helpful to use quotes "...". Also, it would help if you had fewer blank lines"


Thank you for your advice, anon.

May I give you some? Use a blog name, any blog name will do. Responding to anons when you haven't a clue how many are posting or who said what is as confusing a task as attempting to unravel my rapid posts.

notanon said...

Auntie Flo' said...

"Responding to anons when you haven't a clue how many are posting or who said what is as confusing a task as attempting to unravel my rapid posts."

Yet you appear to have managed without too much difficulty. Be a good chap and use quotation marks when quoting. Thanks.

The Remittance Man said...

Why bother with the expense of building an airport in the middle of the river and adding to the environmental desecration of the Thames Estuary when there's a much cheaper and better alternative?

The area is already blighted by some pretty awful conurbations, so why not kill two birds with one stone and simply bulldoze Gravesend or Dartford and build the airport on the rubble?

Auntie Flo' said...

Emissions from planes:

"Only 6% of total"
(Miliband on Paxman)

x 2 by 2020

Those are BAA's figures, I believe which, worrying as they are, seriously understate the postion.

First, I believe they understate the emissions from planes and require checking

Second, high altitude emissions are far more damaging than those on the ground.

Third, the 6% figure does not account for a mass of secondary emissions:

1.more car journeys to airports

2.more road building such as for ongoing M11 extensions

3.more terminal and runway construction

4.more airport service industry (e.g. car park) construction

5.more infrastructure and infrastructural link construction (e.g. for water and sewage)

6.more water and sewage works construction - current ones are at breaking point

7. more train and bus terminal construction

8. more staff migration and housing for airport workers

9. more schools, supermarkets and other infrastructure for this housing

10. (delayed) expansion of new water and sewage works

11. more flooding and sewage problems as a result of that housing development (viz Harlow)

12. (delayed) expansion of the water and sewage infrastructure

13. more state support during recessions - air tourism is particularly vulnerable to these and c 24% of Heathrow's staff were made redundant during the last recession

And so it goes on, the list is bottomless.

Auntie Flo' said...

Aviation is another Northern Rock.

Brown and nulab's view of the vast emission an d economic cost of aviation is, so what? Nulabbers, most of whom have never run a business or done a productive, practical job in their lives, rub their hands together in glee at the thought of all wonderful nulab style enterprise for UK.

However, the business minded among us will recognise that little long term good or profit ever resulted from state funded, or part state/taxpayer funded private business enterprise.

We will recognise that this is particularly true of enterprises with wholly artificially (taxpayer) generated markets, enterprises which are over trading and which make a loss, or would do so without state funding.

And that is what aviation is, a loss making state funded private enterprise without the ownership and control benefits of nationalisation.

Controlling this loss, which the EU will eventually do anyway would have the following benefits:

1. Without state funding via tax and VAT exemptions (subsidies), aviation could not use taxpayers' money to fund the entirely artificially generated market for cheap flights - primarily for the richest 4%.

2. So that form of planet damaging and artificially generated demand would fall to a point where cheap flights stopped.

3. The end of cheap flights would mean the end of aviation's air tourism massive balance of payments loss to UK

4. A benefit to the UK economy of over £40 billion pa currently and c £80 - £100 billion or more by 2020.

5. Huge savings of squandered oil reserves

6. Huge emissions savings - towards meeting Kyoto targets

7. A healthier economy - reduction of balance of payments loss

8. A healthier environment

9. A healthier populace

10. A boost to our - profitable and unsubsidised - domestic tourist industry

11. Domestic tourism (already employs one million) compensates for aviation job losses.

Auntie Flo' said...

notanon said...

"Be a good chap and use quotation marks when quoting. Thanks."


Thank you for identifying yourself, anon, I have tken your advice and now use quotation marks when I remember to do so.

N.B. I'm female, so cut out the sexism, please, there's a good little person :)

notanonagain said...

Auntie Flo' said...

"I have tken your advice and now use quotation marks when I remember to do so."

Excellent. Thank you.

"N.B. I'm female"

Oops. Chapesse.

(By the way, I'm not 7:38 PM)

Captain Haddock said...

A radical suggestion: why don't we just spend some money on the airports we already have? They are heavily underinvested in and would be even worse with a new airport to compete with.

Stowford said...

Let's set the record straight about Maplin Airport, which was cancelled in 1974, from someone old enough to remember. (Wiki it) Several sites were investigated for a fourth Airport serving London, and Maplin was the least worst. Gatwick and Stanstead were then very small and Luton was another possibility, but Maplin Sands could be linked to Central London by a high speed monorail.

Environmentally this was held to be preferable to Cliffe or expansion of Heathrow, Stanstead or Gatwick. It couldn't have been worse than what actually happened and the huge degradation of the environment around Heathrow and across the Home Counties when technology shoehorned twice as many aircraft into the same space.

What knocked Maplin on the head was the Yom Kippur war and the Arabs turning off the oil. Britain was also bankrupt over wartime loans from America and they wanted their money back. (We eventually paid them back very recently.)

We had the three day week, phased power cuts and a 50 MPH limit to conserve fuel, and Airport expansion was very low on our priority list.

We now have unbridled expansion of transport generally and actual use of oil fuel increasing much faster than the supposed Kyoto carbon cuts. Plus gas and coal. We have no plans to cut real carbon emissions and never did have any - just a heap of eyewash like changing lightbulbs and putting up near useless wind farms with false estimates of the power produced based on maximum output instead of actual useable output. The protest groups are used to make this source seem more important than it could ever be.

If we were serious about carbon emissions we should be cutting back on our total actual use of oil and coal and also not exporting our manufacturing emissions to Asia. When we see a universal and enforced 60 MPH speed limit and massive reductions in the demand for fossil fuels we will know we are taking at least some small steps towards slowing down Climate Change instead of the farce we are being offered.

There is a simple test which will show we have actually reduced our use of fossil fuels and that is when the price drops to below its extraction cost. Of coures Hell will freeze over at the same time, but until then we can stop pretending we are doing anything at all to limit Climate Change.