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Heathrow Runway protesters 'likely to face prison'

Protesters made their way onto the North runway in July last year Credit: ITV News

Thirteen protesters who chained themselves to railings at Heathrow Airport have been told it is almost inevitable they will be jailed for their actions.

Members of the Plane Stupid campaign group cut a hole in a fence and made their way on to the north runway at the airport in July last year. They were found guilty of aggravated trespass and entering a security-restricted area of an aerodrome.

Members of the Plane Stupid group made their way onto the north runway disrupting flights Credit: ITV News

Giving her verdict at Willesden Magistrates' Court, District Judge Deborah Wright said the cost of the disruption at the airport on July 13 2015 was "absolutely astronomical".

The demonstrators had admitted being on the runway but claimed their actions were necessary to stop people dying from the effects of pollution and climate change.

The group have been bailed to appear for sentencing on February 24th.

Family under flightpath call fire service after ice hits roof

Ice, thought to have come from an aircraft, crashed down on a house in Twyford, Berkshire, as the residents were preparing breakfast. A hole about 18 inches square appeared in the roof, while tiles broke into small fragments and plaster cracked in a ceiling.

The hole in the roof at Twyford Credit: Richard Burt

On Sunday 17th January, my wife, elderly parents and I were preparing breakfast when we heard a loud bang upstairs. We discovered that a hole about 18ins square had been driven through the roof, breaking four roof tiles into small fragments and cracking the plaster of a bedroom ceiling. We were unable to open the trap door to the loft which we feared was weighed down by the contents of the loft or roof tiles.

We suspected that this had been caused by ice falling from an aircraft, presumably on its descent into Heathrow, as we are directly beneath one of the flight paths. This diagnosis was confirmed by investigation by the fire brigade As you can imagine, it caused considerable distress to my parents and, as my wife and I have just given up teaching posts in the Caribbean to become full time live-in carers, something of a climatic culture shock!

– Richard Burt

BA creates 2,000 new jobs at Gatwick and Heathrow

Staff numbers at BA will top 20,000 Credit: ITV

British Airways will recruit a record 2,000 new workers at Heathrow and Gatwick this year as the airline takes delivery of new planes and flies to new destinations.

The company says it will employ 1,600 cabin crew and 350 pilots, and comes as record numbers fly out of the region's airports.

For the first time more than 40 million passengers flew out of Gatwick last year. At Heathrow it was 75 million.

It will bring staff numbers at BA to over 20,000 which is more than ever before in the history of the company.

The airline say the staff will be needed to help operate 13 new planes including Boeing 787s and Airbus A380s. They will train at a new facility at Heathrow.

The airline will fly to 13 new destinations.

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Record number of passengers flying through Heathrow

Credit: PA

Heathrow Airport saw a record number of passengers last year, according to new data.

Almost 75 million people used the airport during 2015, an increase of 2.2% on 2014.

2015 has been a banner year for Heathrow, serving more passengers than ever and being recognised in a number of awards as the best major airport in Europe for both passenger service and eco-innovation.

– John Holland-Kaye, Chief Executive, Heathrow airport

Last month the Government put off a decision on whether to support expansion at Heathrow until at least the summer while ministers carry out further examination of issues such as air quality and noise pollution.

Airports praised for not charging drop-off parking fees

Gatwick is one of the airports to be praised Credit: ITY

The South's two main airports - Gatwick and Heathrow - have been praised by industry experts for not charging drop-off parking fees. It comes as other major UK airports, such as Stansted, have been charging drivers £2.50 for a maximum of 10 minutes. Bob Atkinson from TravelSupermarket says he wants to see all airports adopt free five-minute parking.

Millions prepare for the great Christmas getaway

More than a million people will pass through Heathrow Credit: ITV

Today is expected to be the busiest day for the Christmas getaway with around 14 million drivers taking to the roads. The M25 and M4 could be the most congested, especially around 4pm.

At Heathrow 1.2 million passengers at Heathrow will be jetting off for the festive break. Gatwick will handle 900,000 passengers.

In Dover, 600,000 will travel by ferry over the next two days.

Eurostar say tens of thousands of passengers will head to Paris and Brussels.

It comes as millions of rail passengers are warned to expect some of the worst disruption ever over the festive period with 10 days of major works.

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