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London Airports

Volume 501: debated on Wednesday 2 December 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport with reference to the answer of 9 November 2009, Official Report, column 49W, if he will publish the submission to the Under-Secretary of State for Transport, the hon. Member for Gillingham (Paul Clark) setting out (a) the (i) reasons and (ii) justifications for not providing the information requested in question 298409 and (b) the estimated cost of providing the information requested, as required in accordance with section 7.28 of the Cabinet Office’s Guide to Parliamentary Work. (302859)

The request in question 298409 was about representations received from hon. and right hon. Members of each party in favour of (a) a third runway at Heathrow airport, (b) a second runway at Gatwick airport, (c) further expansion of Stansted airport and (d) a new airport in the Thames estuary. No time period was specified. As my 9 November answer explained, no such records are held centrally. To seek to obtain the information would therefore require an exhaustive search of both electronic and paper records across the Department for Transport at least as far back as 2002 when options for airport development were consulted upon. Such an exercise would well exceed the £750 threshold in Cabinet Office guidance for written questions.