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250,000 Londoners will be under new flightpath if Heathrow goes ahead, says Gatwick

More than a quarter of a million Londoners will find themselves under a new Heathrow flightpath if a third runway gets the go ahead, it was claimed today.

Rival airport Gatwick released an animated video showing flightpaths over 'highly populated' areas, including Regents Park and Lords cricket ground.

The airport said 278,000 people would be affected compared to 3,800 if a new runway was built at Gatwick.

Gatwick argued some areas of London will be overflown by airliners for the first time, including St John's Wood, Maida Vale, Kensington, Notting Hill and Shepherd's Bush.

The difference in noise impact between the two schemes is stark.

We have to decide whether to ignore the views of a million Londoners whose health will be affected by constant noise, or expand Gatwick, the environmentally responsible option where we can cap the number of people most affected by noise and pay their council tax.

– Stewart Wingate, Gatwick CEO

The video was immediately dismissed by Heathrow as 'speculative'.

A final decision on a new runway in the south east of England could come from ministers as early as tomorrow. The government says an announcement will be made before the end of October.