HL Deb 09 November 1982 vol 436 cc98-9

2.46 p.m.

Baroness Burton of Coventry

My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question which stands in my name on the Order Paper.

The Question was as follows:

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have reached a decision concerning the construction of a second terminal at Gatwick airport and, if not, when they expect to do so.

The Earl of Avon

Yes, my Lords, my right honourable friends the Secretaries of State for the Environment and for Trade have issued their decision today and have granted the British Airports Authority outline planning permission for a second passenger terminal at Gatwick Airport.

Baroness Burton of Conventry

My Lords, is the noble Earl aware that I am very glad to receive an affirmative reply and that I would like to thank him for the papers I have received? Is he further aware that I did not know whether or not the Government were trying to buy me off or had reached a decision; that as I have not yet had time to read all the papers I am glad that he has answered the question for me; and that I assume that planning permission has now been granted?

The Earl of Avon

Yes indeed, my Lords, the noble Baroness is totally correct; the fact that it happened today and not tomorrow is entirely fortuitous.

Lord Boyd-Carpenter

My Lords, can my noble friend tell us what has been the total cost of the prolonged public inquiries before this decision was made?

The Earl of Avon

My Lords, in this happy atmosphere I am afraid to have to tell my noble friend that I do not have those figures at my fingertips.

Lord Leatherland

My Lords, purely to seek information, may I ask the noble Earl what will be the effect of this move on Stansted Airport in Essex?

The Earl of Avon

My Lords, this inquiry is an entirely separate matter.

Lord Leatherland

; No, my Lords, because, if this particular airport is going to do more, will Stansted be asked to do less?

The Earl of Avon

My Lords, these factors have been taken into account, and no doubt in the other planning inquiry they will be taken into account again.

Forward to