After favourable results in a recent survey of local residents, Heathrow Airpor t has announced details of its next third runway consultation.
The Populus survey published this month revealed that local support for expansion of Heathrow has increased 6%, while opposition has fallen by 1%.
The survey was the first to poll local residents since parliament voted to give permission for the airport to build a third runway to the northwest of the current airfield.
Vocal opposition to the airport's plans over several years has highlighted noise and air pollution, transport and destruction of houses and communities as reasons not to build another runway i the densely populated area around the airport.
However, Heathrow directly employs a largely local workforce of 78,000 people and sustains many more jobs in related businesses in the area.
Different areas around the airport differ in their support for expasion. Populus polled a total of 12,537 adults in 15 constituencies local to Heathrow Airport by telephone between 5 July 2018 and 3 September 2018.
At least 833 residents from each of the following parliamentary constituencies were interviewed for the study: Maidenhead, Spelthorne, Brentford & Isleworth , Feltham & Heston , Windsor, Uxbridge & South Ruislip , Slough, Esher & Walton, Hayes & Harlington , Beaconsfield, Ealing Central & Acton , Ealing North, Ealing Southall , Richmond Park and Twickenham .
So how does each constituency feel about the airport's expansion plans?
|Feltham and Heston||59%||39%||26%||29%|
|Brentford and Isleworth||44%||24%||39%||27%|
|Ealing Central and Acton||47%||25%||28%||17%|
|Hayes and Harlington||50%||28%||31%||24%|
|Uxbridge and South Ruislip||44%||23%||35%||22%|
|Esher and Walton||46%||22%||34%||20%|
Ealing Southall is the strongest supporter
Within the 5 constituencies surrounding Heathrow Airport, Ealing Southall has the strongest support for the runway, coming in at 62% of those polled.
In addition, 40% of all of those polled were strongly in support of the airport's construction. Southall is just a few miles from the airport, which is a major employer in the area.
Ealing Southall MP Virendra Sharma is a vocal supporter of the airport's expansion plans.
The lowest support was in Richmond, 33%, followed by Twickenham with 37% and Brentford and Isleworth and Uxbridge and South Ruislip, both with 44%.
More than half of Richmond opposes Heathrow expansion
Of the constituencies polled, Richmond had the strongest opposition for third runway construction at 51%.
36% of those polled even strongly opposed the runway.
Richmond Council is one of four which, along with the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and Greenpeace, have launched a legal challenge in the High Court against parliament's decision.
Hillingdon Council, which includes the entirety of Heathrow Airport in its boundaries, is also a part of the legal action.
More men favour expansion
According to the results of the survey, support for Heathrow is at 56% among men in the 15 constituencies, compared with 43% among women.
The findings are reinforced at the other end, with 26% or men opposed to the expansion, while 36% of women are opposed.
Heathrow Airport says that even those opposed to the expansion will be able to have a say in the way the airport is expanded, in a new consultation set to launch in the new year.
The first consultation was carried out earlier this year by Heathrow, ahead of the vote and helped identify the top options for runway length and placement as well as issues including the total overhaul of the M25's western region and the locations of terminals, roads and car parks.
The second consultation will be closely followed by a third and final public consultation, in June 2019, after which planning permission will be obtained for the projects.
Emma Gilthorpe, Executive Director of Expansion said: “This polling shows that thousands of local people recognise the benefits expansion will bring, including jobs and apprenticeships, and the steps we have taken to deliver growth sustainably.
"It also shows we have more work to do to assure our neighbours we have plans to address the negative impacts of a third runway.
"Next year’s consultations will be an important opportunity for our neighbours to speak to us directly, so they can help shape and improve our expansion plans and deliver an expanded Heathrow we can all be proud of.”