At Transport Questions on the 12th of March I had the following exchange with the Minister, Kelly Tolhurst MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, regarding the Court of Appeal’s February decision on the expansion of Heathrow Airport:
Does my hon. Friend agree that, as well as digesting what I agree are the complex implications of that judgment, she could take this opportunity to consider the report by the New Economic Foundation, entitled “Baggage Claim”? That report debunks many of the received wisdoms about the value to the UK economy of Heathrow expansion, and sets out in detail the economic opportunities created by regional expansion, especially in terms of levelling-up, which is a clear commitment of this Government.
As my hon. Friend has outlined, just as I have a number of times today, the Court of Appeal judgment is complex. We are considering it, and we will set out our next steps in due course. On regional connectivity, we are committed to delivering airport expansion that is in line with our environmental obligations. We are also committed to levelling up, and ensuring that people are able to travel, whichever part of the country they live in, and that obviously relates to local and regional airports.
In my roles as your local MP and as Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Heathrow Expansion and Regional Connectivity, I will continue to hold the Government to account and support efforts to improve regional connectivity across the UK whilst meeting our commitments to the environment.