William Eichler 20 July 2018

Councils seek judicial review of Heathrow runway decision

Councils seek judicial review of Heathrow runway decision  image

A group of London councils have formally notified the secretary of state for transport that they will be seeking a judicial review of the Government's decision to support the third Heathrow runway.

The London boroughs are challenging Whitehall’s decision to give policy support for the controversial expansion of the airport because of concerns the scheme will have a negative impact on air quality.

They argue the Government’s position, published as the Airports National Policy Statement, has ‘misunderstood and misapplied’ the law on air quality.

The local authorities, whose legal challenge has the backing of the mayor of London and Greenpeace, will also argue the Government has failed to properly deal with the noise consequences and surface access impacts.

They argue the runway will have ‘unacceptable effects’ on the transport network and traffic pollution.

‘We have given the Government numerous opportunities to address our concerns and answer our questions and they have demonstrably failed to do so,’ said Cllr Ray Puddifoot, leader of Hillingdon Council.

‘The Government has misunderstood and misapplied the law on air quality, despite having already lost recent legal challenges on this issue.

‘The evidence of unacceptable damage to the environment and the health and wellbeing of many thousands of people is untenable in both law and common sense.’

The London Assembly has also announced it will ‘thoroughly scrutinise’ the decision to build a third runway at Heathrow Airport.

Re-stating its long standing and cross-party opposition to a third runway, the Assembly passed a motion resolving ‘to campaign to prevent its implementation.’

‘We are nothing if our principle priority is not the health and well-being of Londoners and there is no doubt that the expansion of Heathrow would have a harmful impact on our city,’ said Tony Arbour AM, who proposed the motion.

‘The purpose of this motion is to ensure that the spectre of a third runway is raised on every possible occasion. The motion demonstrates that the assembly means business in stopping Heathrow expansion.’

A Department for Transport spokesperson said: ‘As the secretary of state has made clear, we are confident in the decision-making process which led to designation of the Airports National Policy Statement, and stand ready to defend it robustly against legal challenge.’

The local authority group comprises the London boroughs of Hillingdon, Wandsworth, Richmond, Hammersmith & Fulham, and Windsor & Maidenhead Council.

Open for business image

Open for business

Andrew Knowles and Leena Gillespie explain how local authorities can reshape the future of Britain’s challenged high street.
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs


North West Leicestershire District Council
You could earn up to £31,173 per annum
You will be joining a busy team that carries out all types of maintenance and improvements across a diverse range of occupied and vacant properties. Coalville, Leicestershire
Recuriter: North West Leicestershire District Council

Executive Director People

Bracknell Forest Borough Council
Up to £167,000
As a truly corporate player, you will bring a strong track record of service improvement and transformation as well as... Bracknell, Berkshire
Recuriter: Bracknell Forest Borough Council

Community Alarms Officer

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£20,903 - £24,491 pro rata
We are looking for enthusiastic individuals who possess a good working knowledge of the community alarm service including assessing and installing... Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Qualified Social Workers within Adult Services

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Essex County Council continues to review its ways of working during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. We continue to work within adult social care with a England, Essex, Colchester
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Occupational Therapists - Adult Services

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Essex County Council continues to review its ways of working during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. We continue to work within adult social care with a England, Essex, Harlow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue