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Tories reject Heathrow third runway in favour of high speed trains

Plans for a third runway at Heathrow would be scrapped and replaced with a new high speed rail under the Tories, shadow transport secretary Theresa Villiers told the Conservative Party Conference today.

The proposals would mean providing a new line linking Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham and London that could be built between 2015 and 2027.

Villiers said: "Being realistic ...the 222,000 more flights a third runway would involve …the equivalent of bolting on to Heathrow a new airport the size of Gatwick …would make it much harder to meet the demanding targets our nation has set itself for tackling climate change."

She added that the journey time for London to Birmingham on the new high speed railway would take 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, Campaign for Better Transport welcomed the Villier's commitment. Executive director Stephen Joseph said: "In the absence of the necessary bold Government transport policies to tackle climate change, the Conservatives have shown the way that is good for the economy and good for the climate."

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