Sep 5 2012 By Jack Griffith
PRIME minister David Cameron has said that his party will not go back on a pre-election promise not to build a third runway at Heathrow.
In the first Prime Minister's Questions session since the summer recess, Mr Cameron told MPs in the House of Commons this afternoon (Wednesday) that he would be sticking to his manifesto pledge over Heathrow expansion, after Hayes and Harlington MP John McDonnell asked whether he would rule out a third runway as long as he is Tory leader.
Mr Cameron also said an announcement on airport policy would be made in the next few days.
The declaration comes a day after the Prime Minister's cabinet reshuffle, which saw Justine Greening, an outspoken opponent of Heathrow expansion, replaced as Transport Secretary by former Chief Whip Patrick McLoughlin, sparking fears that the Conservatives were preparing to do a policy u-turn.
Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said that Mrs Greening's removal from the post was solely because of her "steadfast support of local residents and opposition to the expansion of Heathrow Airport."
He added: "It would be absolute madness, as well as a cynical betrayal of promises for the Government to abandon their pledge."
Mayor of London Boris Johnson was also critical of the reshuffle, and launched a scathing attack on his party.
"It is clear that the government wants to ditch its promises and send yet more planes over central London.
"The third runway would mean more traffic, more noise, more pollution - and a serious reduction in the quality of life for hundreds of thousands of people. We will fight this all the way.
"It is time for the government to level with Londoners."
He added that to best address Britain's future aviation needs, a four runway airport in East London would be the best solution.
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