Wandsworth council's leader has warned that the Heathrow fight is "far from over", after the government gave the airport the green light for expansion.
Wandsworth is one of a group of councils that had already pledged to launch legal action should the decision be made. Reacting to the airport expansion decision, Wandsworth council leader Ravi Govindia said: "This is deeply distressing news for the communities around this airport, but this fight is far from over."
"Ultimately it will be for the courts to decide if this project goes ahead and the law is on our side," he added. "The airport boasts illegal levels of air pollution, woefully inadequate transport capacity and has Europe’s worst noise footprint, and that’s with just two runways. Expansion will make all of these severely damaging issues worse. It’s wrong on every level, legally undeliverable and will end in failure after years of wasted of effort."
Wandsworth is joining forces with Windsor and Maidenhead council, along with Hillingdon and Richmond to fight expansion.
The councillor said he'd be "heading back to the courts, just as we did in 2010 after the Brown government backed Heathrow's third runway". The decision was overturned in the High Court and Govindia said nothing had changed since then to make expanding Heathrow any less damaging.
A council spokesman told City A.M. the council's legal team was looking at the government's announcement now and deciding its legal strategy going forward. It has not yet decided when a judicial review will be launched, but the council is adamant it will be a case of "when" rather than "if".
The Heathrow decision has been welcomed by businesses, but is proving controversial, as expected. Zac Goldsmith MP for Richmond Park and North Kingston said he intends to resign and force a by-election, while co-leader of the Green party, Caroline Lucas has reiterated her intention to oppose the move.
— Caroline Lucas (@CarolineLucas) October 25, 2016