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Rival Heathrow scheme launches legal bid

heathrow 17581396798706 Cropped

Backers behind rival Heathrow expansion scheme Heathrow Hub have launched legal proceedings to block the third runway, which was approved by parliament last month.

Heathrow Hub wants to extend the existing north runway to 6,650m rather than build a new runway, which it says would cost £9.7bn compared to Heathrow’s £14bn expansion plans.

A letter seen by Sky News reveals Heathrow Hub’s lawyers, DAC Beechcroft, have accused the Department for Transport (DfT) of withholding information requested under Freedom of Information (FOI) laws.

It is the second high-profile legal challenge to expansion after City Hall, Greenpeace and five London boroughs joined forces in a bid to kill off the third runway.

Heathrow Hub is hoping to start a full judicial review against the DfT, stopping the Airports National Policy Statement (NPS) – which was approved by MPs in June.

Before the vote Heathrow Hub chief executive Jock Lowe warned he would begin legal proceedings over ministers’ misunderstanding and “errors on capacity” in the NPS.

A spokesperson for the DfT said: “As the Secretary of State has made clear, we are confident in the decision-making process which led to designation of the Airports National Policy Statement, and stand ready to defend it robustly against legal challenge.”

DAC Beechcroft said it would release more information later this week.

Heathrow Hub could not be reached for comment.

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