11th November 2003

Politicians and Mandarins Targeted with Campaign Calendar

The top 100 politicians, special advisors and civil servants working on the Air Transport White Paper will be given a powerful reminder of the natural environment and irreplaceable heritage threatened by proposals for a second runway at Stansted Airport when the Stop Stansted Expansion community calendar lands on their desks in the coming days.

The key decision takers including Prime Minister Tony Blair, Transport Secretary Alistair Darling and Environment Secretary Margaret Beckett are still deciding the shape of the White Paper and, say campaigners, there is everything to play for to save Stansted.

The 2004 calendar features full colour pictures of local villages, ancient woodlands and stunning country views highlighting the very essence of what is at stake at Stansted if a second runway were to be built.  More than 70 market towns and villages across the local area  are threatened by the noise and development that would ensue if Stansted were developed to become five times bigger than its present size and a third bigger than today’s Heathrow.

Norman Mead, Chairman of Stop Stansted Expansion reiterated the determination of the campaign to do everything possible to ensure full awareness of the strength of the case against Stansted and the resolve of the local community to prevent expansion.  “This calendar is a powerful reminder of the overwhelming environmental and heritage case against expansion here.  It will help Ministers, civil servants and top politicians to understand just why this community is so united and committed to preventing the destruction which a second Stansted runway would bring,” he said.

“The photographs will be a revelation to those who are not familiar with this area.  No-one who sees them could fail to be impressed by how much would be lost  if an extra runway were to be sanctioned,” he continued.  “We hope that the images in our community calendar will strike at the conscience of those who stand ready to sacrifice the heart of our country and the charm of a region which would be overwhelmed by urbanisation if expansion went ahead.”

Members of the public wishing to buy copies of the community calendar can do so either by mail order or from more than 25 shops and tourist offices across the Hertfordshire and Essex borders, including Pearson’s in Bishop’s Stortford and the Van Hage Garden Centre near Ware.  Not only is the calendar a real work of art, it represents great value too since everyone involved from professional photographers to volunteer distributors and shops has donated their services, meaning its price can be kept right down to just £5.

Mail order copies (price £7 for UK mailings) are also available with an option to have calendars sent as a gift with a personalised greeting, for example as a Christmas present to friends and family at home or abroad (overseas prices available on request).  Further information is available from SSE by telephone on 01279 870558 or via the website www.stopstanstedexpansion.com.

Campaigning to ensure Stansted Airport's authorised operations stay below harmful limits