Liverpool Airport and Chamber of Commerce to MPs: Vote to support Heathrow expansion
The CEOs of Liverpool John Lennon Airport and the Liverpool & Sefton Chamber of Commerce have written to MPs in Liverpool, and the surrounding area, urging them to support Heathrow Expansion at Monday’s vote on the Airports National Policy Statement. The Liverpool leaders cite the value of domestic connectivity to their region as a key reason why MPs should support the project.
The letter text:
As you will be aware, the Transport Secretary has now set out the next steps to deliver new runway capacity in the South East. Following two consultations on drafts of the Airports National Policy Statement (NPS) last year, the final proposed NPS confirms the government’s preference for a third runway at Heathrow and this will now be subject to a debate and a vote in the House of Commons in the coming weeks.
The NPS sets out the policy for airport expansion in the South East, and particularly at Heathrow, where a new runway will provide the greatest economic and employment benefits, delivering tens of thousands of local jobs and up to £74bn of economic benefits – not including wider trade benefits – spread across the UK.
The expansion of the UK’s main hub airport will be important in supporting exports, tourism and inward investment not only for the UK but also for our region; and the NPS highlights that the proposed expansion at Heathrow will help to protect and strengthen the frequency of existing domestic routes, and secure new flights to UK airports from Heathrow.
Liverpool John Lennon Airport is specifically highlighted as a future beneficiary of a new domestic service to Heathrow, and as the largest UK City without a current connection to a hub airport that offers global links, we see this as a vital service to support the connectivity of our region.
The NPS highlights the existing capacity pressures on runway slots at Heathrow. To ensure Heathrow expansion enables maximum benefit of increased connectivity across the UK, the ring-fencing of slots for domestic services at Heathrow must be delivered and maintained in perpetuity.
Liverpool City Region has a population of 1.5m people and an even greater hinterland encompassing Warrington, Cheshire and North Wales. The surface access and connectivity of the airport to this hinterland positions it as an outstanding prospect for growth and a key transport hub in the North West.
Demand for leisure, tourism and business travel connectivity to global destinations, particularly in a post-Brexit economy, is considerable. The expansion of Heathrow, with the guarantee of providing favourable landing slots for our local airport, will enable our economic potential to be supported and our connectivity demands to be met.
We encourage you to be involved in the debate, to raise the issue of the importance of sustained domestic connectivity through slot allocation, and to vote in support of the Airport NPS to help boost international trade, investment and tourism in our region and across the UK.
Paul Cherpeau, CEO Liverpool & Sefton Chambers of Commerce
John Irving, CEO Liverpool John Lennon Airport