Transport Infrastructure

Part of Business of the House – in the House of Commons at 12:04 pm on 15th January 2009.

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Photo of Geoff Hoon Geoff Hoon Secretary of State, Department for Transport 12:04 pm, 15th January 2009

The hon. Lady makes a fair point. Once I assumed this position, the consultation having been completed, I regretted that on legal advice I was unable to meet communities. I visited the area, and went carefully around the perimeter of Heathrow, visiting the various places affected— [ Interruption. ] The hon. Lady should listen, instead of getting exasperated. Now that the consultation has concluded and I have made the decision, I am in a position to meet those communities, and I would be delighted to do so.

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Peter Duffy
Posted on 16 Jan 2009 12:54 pm (Report this annotation)

This is very unsatisfactory. The Minister must make clear upon what precise legal advice did he make a decision not to meet communities to be affected by the third runway decision. Perhaps he can also clarify what point there is in a meeting now?

Garry Lelliott
Posted on 16 Jan 2009 12:56 pm (Report this annotation)

As Secretary of State, Department for Transport, what possible 'legal' reasons could their be for him not to hear legitimate concerns from residents whose lives would be affected by a 3rd runway? The way this comment reads is "I had no intention of putting myself in a position where I needed to speak to the electorate, but now the decision is made, I will meet people because their protestations won't change anything". I can't say I'm entirely surprised by Mr Hoon's response, he has been a failure in 2 previous ministerial posts, looks like he is going for the hat-trick.