Labour slams £100bn spending plans

The Government must "pull its finger out and start building", Labour said in the wake of today's raft of infrastructure announcements.

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Council tax vow over 2nd runway noise

Around 4,000 households most affected by noise from a possible second runway at

Gatwick will get £1,000 towards their council tax, bosses of the West Sussexairport have promised.

The pledge involves annual compensation and is equivalent to Band A council tax. Gatwick chiefs are pressing hard for an extra runway and such an option is on the shortlist now being considered by the Whitehall-appointed Airports Commission.

Expansion at Gatwick would, without doubt, deliver many upsides for our local community in terms of jobs and investment. But we must also recognise the negative noise impacts on local people from more flights. Gatwick's location obviously means that comparatively fewer people would be affected by a new runway. However, I believe we must do more to help those that would be affected. Under the scheme, we are pledging £1,000 towards council tax for qualifying households in the local area, if and when a second runway became operational."

– Gatwick's chief executive, Stewart Wingate

One of those opposed to a second runway at Gatwick is Horsham Tory MP FrancisMaude. He addressed more than 300 residents of the village of Warnham who areobjecting to a new Gatwick flight path trial.

Even these last few weeks, with the weather keeping people indoors and off-season traffic levels, the noise from the flight path trial has been unacceptable for local residents. When high holiday season is on us, with the warm weather enticing people outside, the effects are likely to be intolerable. So I'm urging (air traffic control company) Nats and Gatwick to call time on this trial now. We've had the trial. It's failed."

– Francis Maude MP, Horsham Con


Airspace consultation coming to an end

*People in Sussex, Surrey, Kent, Essex and Hampshire have one last chance to have their say on the positioning of new flight paths. *NATS, the UK's leading provider of air traffic services, and Gatwick are nearing completion of a joint consultation on proposed airspace changes.

This input could be on noise sensitive sites such as open areas or noise sensitive industries - specifically any place which could be affected if aircraft were to fly directly over it. Stakeholders are also being asked for their views on how to balance limiting CO2 emissions with noise.

This information will be used to help establish new routes which offer the most benefit with the least possible impact. However, people living and working in the consultation areas are warned while some may not notice a change in flight numbers others may experience a significant increase.

Gatwick Express closed until January 2 for vital work

Vital improvement works are needed at three locations. Credit: Meridian

Gatwick Express services will not run until January 2. Network Rail will undertake vital improvement work at three locations on the network: replacing a major rail junction near Purley (north of Gatwick), upgrading signalling at Victoria and working on a new platform at Gatwick Airport station.

Southern, which operates operates Gatwick Express, will run a revised train and bus replacement service between London and Gatwick Airport between December 26 and January 1. Details of the revised services on this link.

Rail delays in Sussex after train hits deer

The scene this morning at Gatwick Airport Station Credit: Laura Plumer

A train has struck a deer near Gatwick Airport resulting in damage to the train and causing delays of up to 90 minutes to services through the station. Buses are also supplementing trains where needed between Purley / Gatwick and Three Bridges.

First Capital Connect passengers may use their tickets on East Midlands Trains, First Capital Connect trains on the Great Northern route, London Underground, Southern and Southeastern services on any reasonable route.

Southern passengers may use London buses on route 405 between Purley and Redhill, and also Metrobus services between Redhill and Crawley.


Gatwick expansion creates 200 Easyjet jobs

Video. Easyjet says it will create 200 new jobs - with the launch of new services from Gatwick. The airline bought slots from rival Flybe which is pulling out of Gatwick to cut costs.

Easyjet is targeting business travellers with flights to Brussels and Strasbourg among others. The airline says the new routes will carry more than one million extra passengers.

It's part of a strategy to change Gatwick's image as mainly an airport for holidaymakers. Malcolm Shaw has our report.

Statement on Gatwick passenger numbers

Gatwick continues to successfully compete with other London airports. Business and leisure passengers are choosing to fly from Gatwick thanks to the range of destinations we serve – more than any other UK airport – and our continued focus on delivering excellent service and facilities. As well as attracting more passengers, we have also added airlines and routes, ultimately building more connections between London and the world."

– Nick Dunn, Chief Financial Officer at London Gatwick
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