Published Monday 6 March 2017

The Royal Borough has criticised Government-run consultation events on Heathrow expansion after key information was left out and the local press were not allowed to cover one of the sessions.

Councillors and council officers were present on Friday 3 March when a local media outlet was excluded from the Department for Transport’s public event at Windsor Youth and Community Centre.

The event was designed to give people a chance to learn more about what the proposed expansion of Heathrow Airport would mean to them and their local environment.

However, members of the local media were seen to be asked to leave the venue. Cllr Simon Dudley, leader of the council, will be attending tomorrow’s session (Tuesday 7 March), alongside reporters, at Sportsable in Braywick Park, Maidenhead.

Cllr Dudley said: “It is appalling that these public sessions, designed to give residents all the facts so they can make up their minds, have been so disorganised.

“We are already disappointed by the lack of information being included in the leaflets sent to residents’ homes but to block the press from attending is yet another barrier to allowing people to make an informed decision.

“I will be personally attending tomorrow’s session in Maidenhead and hope to see this event run more openly than in Windsor last week.”

Cllr John Bowden, chairman of the council’s Aviation Forum, said: “Those living underneath the current and proposed flight paths deserve to know exactly what the impact of a third runway at Heathrow would mean to them and we want to see more transparency in this consultation.

“To see the press being ejected from last week’s session in Windsor was hugely disappointing as we want this process to include as many of our residents as possible and the local media play an important part in promoting this.”