Knocking on doors …

February 7, 2008 at 9:41 am | Posted in Heathrow, Heathrow airport, Heathrow expansion, Maidenhead, Public meetings, RBWM, Windsor | 5 Comments

I spent the whole morning preparing notes to raise awareness of the Royal Borough’s Public Meeting in our neck of the woods on proposals for Heathrow expansion, and the entire afternoon delivering information in person to neighbours who wished to have details.

Summary: lovely conversations with many folk—very enlightening, supportive, passionate and uplifting. Thank you.

To give you some idea of the Government’s views, you might find the response worth reading before our meeting:

Heathrow expansion – campaign

28 November 2007

The Prime Minister received a campaign asking the government not to approve the Heathrow airport expansion.

Read the Prime Minister’s response



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  1. Well done to you inel. The Royal Parks might be the place to propose instead! Actually I can’t see the Queen being enthusiastic about a 3rd runway. Have you popped by for tea to canvass her opinion yet?

  2. Funny you should mention HM the Queen, as I often think when I am attending a service inside St. George’s Chapel:

    What would the people who lived and died constructing this magnificent edifice think, if they could hear the sound of planes overhead every minute or so?

    After writing to my MP, and he is very supportive, I have seriously considered writing to HRH Prince Charles and Sir John Houghton. We have cross-party support from MPs, MEPs, councillors. It is now a case of broadening this to encompass the concerns of more people, especially on the topic of climate change.
    The government are doing their best to keep this to a local issue about an extra runway. We are deliberately *not* being consulted about climate change—only local noise levels and air quality standards.
    I have alerted the headmasters of three schools in our area to let them know about the Public Meetings. Many students I know are more knowledgable on climate change than their parents. We could do with more young people involved.
    One more runway sounds inconsequential and harmless enough. Just one more strip of tarmac in our area is a plain non-emotive way to describe it. Who cares? Me!

  3. Yes, the Prince of Wales. Of course.

    Interesting that you’re saying the govt’s tactics are to localize the issues. They must believe they can win on this front, using of course their own commissioned data!

    Utilizing school children is a good idea. Good for you.

  4. Marketing involves framing, presenting material in the best light, highlighting where competing solutions fail, and channeling marketing materials to the selected audience.
    Sales involves building relationships with clients, learning (and helping define) their needs, and positioning your solution such that it appears to fulfil clients’ needs.
    The Consultation Document has been framed so magnificently by government consultants who are devoted to marketing this concept of Heathrow expansion, because that is what they are paid to do. They are not paid to question anything. Despite professional marketing attempts, and amidst lingering questions of “How much is this consultation costing British taxpayers?” many residents feel it is insulting our intelligence and patience having to find a way through this effective blocking process to make sensible objections.
    Basically, the Government has sent out two primary signals:
    one is that Heathrow expansion is going ahead anyway, so no point in questioning that, but you can grumble to your neighbours if you like.
    the other is that you don’t know enough about this complicated topic, so you should leave it to the experts.
    Neither message improves the Government’s relationship with our community. Nor do they provide evidence to support the Government’s assumed claim in the world as a self-professed leader on climate change. Nothing could be further from the truth.
    Defra has been silent on Heathrow expansion. That clearly shows the pecking order of Government Departments.
    When did the Department for Transport become the Government (i.e. Government for Transport is what we are witnessing here), leaving Department for the Environment et al to flounder in a dried up riverbed?

  5. Very well summarized.

    I was thinking that if you are serious about spending time running a campaign via the schools option you could;
    1. ask your head teacher at your child(ren)’s school if he/she supports or is against the Heathrow expansion
    2. if the head is against then he/she might be interested in involving the children in a ‘project’ about CC and the case study of the threatened Heathrow expansion. Logged under science or citizenship studies. Whatever.
    3. if your school has a good website the project could include running a nationwide petition campaign, contacting 100s of other schools to gather thoughts and email signatures from other pupils across the UK. This would need a parent/staff member who is good with computers
    4. possibly getting an environment charity to help coordinate the campaign, provide material for teaching maybe and add profile, gain media national coverage (eg. WWF of FoE)
    5. present to Newsnight & then No.10 the petiton from TOMORROW’S GENERATION, who object to the airport expansion being a part of THEIR future

    Hey, just some thoughts!! 🙂

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