The consortium fighting the proposed runway extension at Southampton Airport has raised more than £60,000 towards the cost of pursuing a judicial review into Eastleigh Borough Council’s decision to give it the go-ahead.
GOESA, which was set up by opponents of the expansion plans, has received donations from more than 400 people, and is well on its way to achieving its target of £100,000. The total includes a substantial contribution from anti-expansion group AXO Southampton raised through a continuing crowd-funding appeal.
GOESA has formally applied to the High Court for a Judicial Review. It has briefed the law firm Leigh Day and will be represented by David Wolfe QC, the same team behind the recent successful attempt to have the Stonehenge Tunnel declared illegal.
John Lauwerys from GOESA said, “We have had a really enthusiastic response from the public, especially residents of Southampton, Eastleigh and Winchester who will be most affected by the expansion. We believe we have a very strong case, because Eastleigh’s decision was flawed both in the way it was taken and the reasons for doing so.”
“The airport has greatly overstated the economic advantages of expansion, while giving the impression that it would have to close if permission were withheld, which is not the case. It also failed to acknowledge the environmental impact of massively increasing passenger numbers, as well as the effect of extra noise on tens of thousands of local residents.”
Eastleigh Borough Council approved the expansion in May, overruling the original decision by its own Eastleigh Local Area Committee to turn it down.