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  1. National

Heathrow expansion 'right for the UK and industry'

A computer generated image of the new runways proposal. Credit: Heathrow Aiport

Business and trade unions appear to have broadly welcomed the prospect of a third runway at Heathrow Airport in West London.

Terry Scuoler, chief executive of EEF, the manufacturers' organisation, said:

Heathrow is a global freight hub and the clear preference for manufacturers with a business need for aviation expansion. Today's recommendation that Heathrow should be allowed to expand is the right one for industry and the country.

– Terry Scuoler, EEF


  1. National

Boris Johnson: Heathrow runway 'will never be built'

Boris Johnson has said that he is "disappointed" with the Airport Commission's recommendations and predicted that a third runway at Heathrow would never be built.

In a tweet the Mayor of London said: "Davies commission pro Heathrow is disappointing - compounds not solves issue - destined for vertical filing as 3rd r/way will never be built."

  1. National

Greenpeace: Heathrow expansion a 'can of worms' for Cameron

A 'no third runway' signs in the village of Sipson near Heathrow Airport. Credit: PA

The recommendation for a new runway at Heathrow Airport sparked fresh debate on the environmental impact of the plan and stirred up further political debate.

Local campaigners and environmental groups vowed to continue their protests against the expansion, as business leaders broadly welcomed the plans.

Green groups attacked the announcement because of the likely impact on the environment.

Greenpeace UK executive director John Sauven said:

A third runway at Heathrow is an environmental and political minefield. It would jeopardise the UK's climate targets, worsen air pollution in London, and open up a political can of worms for David Cameron.

– John Sauven, Greenpeace

London Underground: We are ready to negotiate

London Underground have urged the unions to "keep talking" in order to solve the disputes over pay related to the introduction of the Night Tub. In a statement to ITV News London, Steve Griffiths, London Underground's Chief Operating Officer said:

Londoners and businesses overwhelmingly back the Night Tube. It will make life easier for everyone, cut journey times, create jobs and boost the economy.

Most of our staff will not be affected by the new services at all because it affects only five of eleven lines. Some staff will actually work fewer nights than they do now because we have hired 137 more train operators specifically for the Night Tube.

The train staff who will be affected are being asked to work around an additional seven nights each year on average, with no increase in their total current hours. No-one is being asked to work more hours.

In return, we are offering a realistic pay increase this year and next, as well as an additional payment for Night Tube working. We are ready to negotiate, but any increase must be sustainable and fair. I urge the Trade Unions to keep talking to us to achieve a settlement.

– Steve Griffiths

TSSA union Underground workers vote for strike

Underground workers who are part of the TSSA Union have also voted for strike action, as part of an ongoing dispute with London Underground. The news comes just hours after RMT union members also voted to strike.

General Secretary Manuel Cortes said 76% of balloted members voted for strikes, whilst 88% voted for other forms of strike action.

We hope that this result will show Boris Johnson just how angry our members are at his plans to try and rush the start of the night Tube without any detailed agreement on manning levels.

Under plans we have been shown so far, some Zone 3 stations will be left with just one staff member on duty in the middle of the night. That is no way to run a service which prides itself on safety and security.

We want to reach a deal which safeguards both passengers and staff. We will be hoping to reach agreement on that in the coming days.

– Manuel Cortes


RMT Underground staff vote for strike action

The RMT Union have voted overwhelming for strike action over a number of disputes with Underground bosses over the introduction of the tube running overnight, pay, staffing, safety and use of agency staff. RMT General Secretary Mick Cash:

It is simply outrageous that management, in a mad dash to bulldoze through the night running stunt, have smashed apart long-term agreements and have resorted to trying to bully staff into accepting roster changes at a local level and the message from RMT and our sister unions is clear – we are not having it.

RMT will be co-ordinating campaigning with our sister tube unions as we seek to defend negotiating agreements, decent pay and the rights and working conditions of our members.

– Mick Cash

London's transport boss to take up a new role at Network Rail

London's transport boss has quit to take up a new role at Network Rail. Sir Peter Hendy will replace Richard Parry-Jones as chairman and oversee 2,500 stations across the country.

Sir Peter Hendy Credit: PA

Network Rail has a critical role in the railway industry and the whole British economy, by facilitating economic growth and enabling job creation.

I am delighted to be asked to chair the Board and help it, the executive team and the whole organisation fulfil Network Rail's full potential.

I am looking forward to working with Mark Carne as he takes the organisation forward.

– Sir Peter Hendy

Could electric scooters eventually ride alongside 'Boris Bikes'?

When Boris Johnson ends his time as London mayor in 2016, we'll still get a few reminders of his time at City Hall - not least from 'Boris Bikes'.

Credit: PA

If his successor is looking for some new ideas how about electric scooters? A new hire scheme is being trialled in Paris - and if successful could be coming to a street near you.

One of the CityScoot scooters in Paris Credit: CityScoot

70 scooters are now operating around Paris and cost just over £2 per 15 minutes. Speaking to The Times, founder Bernard Edelist said:

London is definitely our top target after France. The British government wants to encourage two wheeled vehicles so the terrain seems favourable to us and the mentality is right.

– Bernard Edelist
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