Speaking in the Lords last night Baron Spicer former aviation minister said: “… because of the uncertainties about capacity at Heathrow that British Airways is undecided about whether to keep a big hub there.
“Would that not have been unthinkable in the 1980s, for instance, when Heathrow was the number one international airport in the world and when I was Minister of Aviation?”
Transport Minister Baroness Kramer responded, saying there was “no crisis of capacity in the South-East”, but accepted that a new runway would be needed by 2030 and “in all likelihood” a second by 2050.
His comments come as Boris Johnson made a bid to tempt London Heathrow Airports Ltd away from west London, to help him set up a new international hub at his preferred “Boris Island” site in the Thames Estuary.
Mr Johnson set out a plan yesterday for a new Heathrow garden city to be built on the current airport site were it to close.