Monday, 10 September 2012

Time to ramp up campaign

Labour PPC for Chatham & Aylesford has called on the Medway Council Conservative administration to step up its campaign efforts or be subsumed in the national debate over aviation capacity which is due to be completed in the summer of 2015

 Should Medway Council lose this argument our area will be threatend with a mega-airport which will undermine the quality of life for thousands of residents and the bulldozing of historic communities on the Hoo Peninsula. 

 The announcement by the Coalition Government last week gives our Council a three year campaigning window to rally local opposition to any airport on the Peninsula, but it requires political leadership from Cllr Rodney Chambers and the Medway Conservative Group.

 London Conservative Mayor Boris Johnson has promised a 'full throated' and funded opposition to Heathrow Airport and local MPs in South West London have threatened to resign and call by-elections over the proposals. 

Conservatives in London are to run and fund their own consultation exercise which is being designed to pursue an Estuary Solution. A consultation exercise which could, in theory, ballot local communities in the areas surrounding Heathrow.

Tristan Osborne said;

"It is clear that the London Conservatives will try and pit anti-airport campaigners in South West London and North Kent against each other in a deliberate attempt to divide-and-rule over the location of an airport. 

Whilst respecting the independent commission established by the government it is very likely the Mayor will try and pursue the Estuary solution as the only feasible alternative to Heathrow; and he will use the significant financial resources at his disposal as Conservative Mayor of London to fund activities to pursue this objective"

"Local car stickers and posters are all well and good but the change in the resolve of the London Conservative administration means we now need to run a professional and highly visual campaign and which will rally the public. 

I am calling on them to start a lamp post poster campaign - as with the campaign to oppose Cliffe previously - and for further exploration of a referendum of the local electorate, as soon as possible, so that we can give people a chance to respond and send a message to local MPs and the government"

"The Conservative-led Local Enterprize Partnership has not ruled out the Estuary Airport over the long term and its clear that dithering and delay in London will lead to a further move in Parliament by Conservatives to pursue an Estuary solution; via the establishment of a Parliamentary Group which could streamline legislation should it be proposed"

"If the Medway Conservatives cant stand up for our area with a meaningful campaign the public across our towns will rightly judge them in 2015 should the idea be proposed"

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