| Press Release - 13 September 2008
RUNWAY RAMBLE HIGHLIGHTS HERITAGE THREAT FROM SECOND RUNWAY PLANS
L to R: SSE member Liz Woods of Widdington dressed as a medieval Essex wench,
Uttlesford District Council Leader Cllr Jim Ketteridge, Cllr Peter Martin, Deputy Leader
of Essex County Council, Uttlesford District Council Chairman Cllr Mark Lemon,
SSE Chairman Peter Sanders, Cllr Ray Gooding of Essex County Council with dog Misty
Hundreds of people joined Stop Stansted Expansion's (SSE's) seventh annual Runway Ramble today to walk through villages and across countryside threatened by BAA's second runway application for Stansted Airport.
They were joined by County and District councillors including Cllr Peter Martin, Deputy Leader of Essex County Council, Uttlesford Leader Cllr Jim Ketteridge and the District Council's Chairman Cllr Mark Lemon.
Some 200 ramblers gathered at the villages of Duton Hill and Molehill Green before taking part in a choice of three walks designed to highlight the scale of the destruction that would be wreaked by the planning application submitted to Uttlesford District Council earlier this year and now due to be heard at a public inquiry starting in April 2009.
Historic buildings, homes, countryside and ancient woodland would disappear or be severely compromised by the plans to make Stansted Airport bigger than Heathrow today if the application were to be approved. Most of Molehill Green would be obliterated, while Duton Hill would find itself at the end of the proposed second runway and subject to direct overflying by more than 40 planes an hour.
Speaking in Molehill Green at the start of the event, SSE Chairman Peter Sanders reminded those taking part of the wider significance of BAA's plans: "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 operator's emphasis on encouraging passengers to travel to Stansted by road and its reluctance to invest in the rail service to accommodate the proposed expansion," he added.
Cllr Peter Martin also spoke, reinforcing Essex County Council's outright opposition to the second runway plans in common with local authorities representing some six million people across the region. 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 Runway Ramble comes just a fortnight before the 26 September deadline for people to send their views on the second runway application to Uttlesford District Council. Written representations will be key to ensuring that the Inspector at the public inquiry is aware of the overwhelming concern about the plans and should be sent to UDC (Planning), London Road, Saffron Walden CB11 4ER, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Further information is available here or from the campaign office on 01279 870558.
CO2 Group Press Release
Carol Barbone, Campaign Director, SSE: M 0777 552 3091, email@example.com