Monday, 31 October 2016

Heathrow Gets the Green Light - Bad News for Shepherd's Bush?

The new face of Shepherd's Bush? Wikimedia
Heathrow's new runway has been given the green light by the Government, despite strong opposition, including from Hammersmith MP Andy Slaughter.

The new runway's flight path will likely lie directly above Shepherd's Bush and Hammersmith. That's very bad news for pretty much everyone in our neighbourhood.

As a result, opposition to the new runway has crossed party lines, with both Labour and Tories coming together in a rare expression of solidarity to oppose what will be a very, very noisy addition to Shepherd's Bush. Zac Goldsmith, MP for Richmond Park, has resigned, forcing a by-election.

Heathrow: busy, and getting busier. Wikimedia
The Third Runway has been under discussion for many years. Anyone who has been to Heathrow lately can hardly have failed to notice how over-crowded and busy it is, and how easily flights can get backed up, with aircraft circling endlessly overhead, waiting to land. Everyone knows that London needs more airport capacity; the problem has been: where to put it? No-one wants a new flight path over their house.

Last year the Davies Commission came out in favour of the Third Runway at Heathrow. Trouble is, this will create a new flight path going directly over central Hammersmith and Shepherds Bush. Yikes. 

Map of Heathrow runways. BBC News, 2008

So what can we do? Not much, it seems, now that the decision has been taken. You could write to your MP, Andy Slaughter, but he's already on our side.

Better perhaps to write to the PM, or members of her cabinet, and urge the government not to build again at Heathrow. Better yet, let them know just how marginal many west London seats are, and will be again in 2020.  Hammersmith was a Tory target in the last election - and it will be again, especially as the area gentrifies.

The Shepherd's Bush Blog offers a personal view on life in Shepherd's Bush. If you would like to contribute a story about our neighbourhood, email us at

No comments:

Post a Comment