Tory MP Zac Goldsmith calls for referendum over Heathrow expansion

17:46 19 September 2012

The Liberal Democrats discussed aviation policy at their party conference today. File picture: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

The Liberal Democrats discussed aviation policy at their party conference today. File picture: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

PA Wire/Press Association Images

A Conservative MP has called for London boroughs to hold referendum-style votes on the expansion of Heathrow airport.

Zac Goldsmith, MP for Richmond Park, made the comments after Richmond council leader, Lord True, announced a ballot to give residents in the borough a chance to say yes or no to a third runway.

Some Conservative MPs are calling on the government to drop its manifesto promise not to expand Heathrow, but Mr Goldsmith has threatened to resign and trigger a by-election if ministers perform a u-turn.

Mr Goldsmith told London24: “I absolutely support Richmond’s decision, and very much hope this extends far beyond Richmond borough.

“The referendum will establish a crucial link between Heathrow expansion and voting, and with a good turnout and result, the Government will be left in no doubt about the significance of Heathrow to west London voters.”

The government has renewed its promise to oppose expansion at the west London airport, but only until the next election in 2015, leaving residents living under its flight path in limbo until then.

Last week Mr Goldsmith asked the Chancellor George Osborne why the government’s policy was to “do nothing” for three years, adding: “Voters need to know where the Government stand before they vote.”

Earlier this month a commission was set up to look at the urgent need for more airport capacity. The body, chaired by Sir Howard Davies, is not expected to report until after the next election.

Lord True earlier this week “declared war” on any expansion at Heathrow airport. He said: “I deeply regret that the nightmare vision of Heathrow expansion that had been so wisely laid to rest by our coalition government has been resurrected.

“This time we must kill it off for good.”

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London news

Friday, September 4, 2015
Richard Powell was seriously injured in a fight at London Victoria station and died a few days later (Picture: BTP)

A 39-year-old man has died after sustaining serious head wounds in a vicious fight inside London Victoria station.

Friday, September 4, 2015
Insulting comments sent to prospective deputy Labour party leader Stella Creasy included 'you look like an alien egg' (Picture: YouTube)

‘She looks like she’s had more c**ks than hot dinners’ is just one of the charming emails Walthamstow MP Stella Creasy has received during her campaign to become deputy Labour leader. Watch her read them out to camera here.

Thursday, September 3, 2015
Police want to speak to this man (Photo: Metropolitan Police)

Detectives want to speak to this man after a woman was sexually assaulted as she waited for a bus on Wick Lane - at 1.30pm.

Thursday, September 3, 2015
A paramilitary police officer carries the lifeless body of Aylan Kurdi, 3, after a number of migrants died and a smaller number were reported missing after boats carrying them to the Greek island of Kos capsized. Picture: AP Photo/DHA/PA Images

A tweet from the account of Wimbledon UKIP candidate Peter Bucklitsch caused outrage today by stating Aylan Kurdi ‘died because his parents were greedy for the good life in Europe’.

Thursday, September 3, 2015
Natalia Czekaj was stabbed seven times

A plumber who sawed off his girlfriend’s head with a breadknife in north London has managed to escape a murder trial - because he is an alcoholic.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Happy viewing!

MyOffers are giving you that chance to win an amazing Samsung 55” Curve HD TV.

Read more
Get ready to take in the beautiful sights of London from above!

Are you always seeking unique ways to see your favourite city? This one is for you.

Read more
Shop till you drop!

Home to top name brands at great prices, TK Maxx is more like a treasure hunt than a shop. Perfect for grabbing a bargain or some hidden gems, you arm yourself with a trolley and go wild.

Read more