Richings Park residents get some HAL soft soap
Anyone expecting the cold hard truth from Heathrow Airport Limited at the Richings Park Residents’ Association meeting on 25th November will have been disappointed.
While Heathrow representatives are fairly amenable to attending such events and are certainly better prepared than their Heathrow Hub counterparts, it is hard for residents to cut through the soft soap and discover what lies in store for them if Heathrow expansion goes ahead. That’s where SHE can come in. Several committee members attended the Richings Park meeting to try to draw out the necessary information from the event. It had been suggested that we take a gong to sound every time we heard something that wasn’t entirely honest – a “Bulls**t Bong”. We didn’t take one but perhaps it’s an idea for the future to bring some clarity to these events.
Here is one Harmondsworth resident’s view of proceedings:
The people who turned up to the meeting in Richings Park tonight should write to their local paper and say that HAL came with nothing except quotes like, “we are working on that” and “you will find out in the future”. When asked what local residents could expect from the compensation deal for the loss of their outside space and peace, the representatives could only say that they didn’t know at this stage. We know. The answer is “NOTHING”. The “FINITE” figure of £550 million that HAL has quoted at consultation events is being spread like loaves and fishes but will not go anywhere near far enough. Nigel Milton admitted in Colnbrook that £550 million is not enough to treat everyone on the boundaries fairly” – let alone further afield.
Tonight, when I asked Heathrow’s Masterplanner, Jonathan Deegan, whether their document should say at least 1,000 homes to go and not the 750 they quote in an attempt to make their package look less disruptive, he said “yes, it probably should”. So why doesn’t it?
I told Cheryl Monk, Head of Community Relations and Policy, that I bet she wouldn’t be doing this if her mother or grandmother were due for eviction. She said she thought she would. I stressed that many of our residents might not survive the upheaval. I got no answer. Likewise, I got no response when I told them their literature should say that the schools on the boundary fence would not be fit for children to attend. Silence… no answer. Young and old, these people couldn’t care less about them.
As for the Bulls**t Bong, tonight it would have sounded like a steel band! The truth is so obvious and the lies so unbelievably absurd you know that others must see what is really happening. There surely cannot be one person there tonight who left satisfied with the inadequate answers.