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Euro-MP to address anti-Wolverhampton Airport rally

June 13, 2003 6:28 PM

West Midlands Euro-MP Liz Lynne will be addressing a rally opposing plans to massively expand Wolverhampton Business Airport this Sunday.

Liz will be speaking, along with Ian Pearson of the Wolverhampton Airport Action Group, Dr Richard Taylor MP and Gerald Kells of the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England, at Dudley Kingswinford Rugby Club this Sunday (15 June) from 7.30pm.

The proposals have met with widespread criticism, with thousands of local residents up in arms about the potential impact on the rural environment, air pollution and noise pollution.

Liz said:

"The government's consultation on future air traffic growth has produced a feeding frenzy of developers all wanting to jump on the bandwagon and cash in. Unfortunately, the people living in and around Wolverhampton have been caught up in the middle. "

"Wolverhampton Business Airport's various plans to increase the number of passengers they handle by between 4 and 10 million a year would appear to be at odds with the Department for Transport's consultation documents which suggest that Wolverhampton is only really suitable for more moderate expansion. Similarly Advantage West Midlands' recent report only supports small expansion and rules out anything that might undermine Birmingham International's status as the West Midlands' premier airport. Even then they admit they have not yet conducted a planning or environmental study on the proposals and have some serious reservations.

"The truth is, any expansion of Wolverhampton will result in a massive roadbuilding programme and even more land being built on for hotels, business parks, distribution centres, and so on. This would be a major undertaking for an area which simply lacks the infrastructure to cope."

"All this demonstrates the chaos that the Government's 'predict and provide' policy on air traffic growth has generated. Every day Alastair Darling continues to prevaricate, the risks remain that overzealous developers will end up digging up thousands of hectares of greenfield land for airports that nobody wants. Air traffic growth needs to be managed, or it will get rapidly out of control."