When we first suggested that Birmingham wanted to be a London airport, we thought that this would be seen as an awful idea and a real negative for anyone living near it, but in fact they are now playing this card themselves as they get the final funding clearance for the runway extension.
With £25 million of taxpayers money secured for moving the road in order to facilitate the extension, the airport’s shareholders have finally agreed to dip their hands in their pockets to fund the building of the rest of it.
From all the coverage in the press, you would think that it was currently impossible for anyone to reach Birmingham by air and now suddenly all these businesspeople will magically appear with open chequebooks ready to pour millions into the local economy and create thousands of jobs.
The reality, of course, is that we already have investment here from India, China, the USA and the Far East, but far more money flows out of the economy due to aviation than flows in. The massive tourism deficit will be exacerbated while local people suffer the effects of noise and air pollution.
Why would anyone want to aspire to have another London airport here?