Ryanair boss brands Thames airport plan insanely stupid
Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary
launched a stinging attack on the idea of a Thames Estuary airport
this week, labelling it 'insanely stupid'.
Mr O’Leary, who is chief
executive of the airline, hit out at the proposal while giving
evidence to the House of Commons Transport Select Committee on
When asked about the scheme
he initially said his views would involve language unsuitable in
But he then went on to say:
"Such a scheme is insane, stupid and hare-brained.
"To try and come up with a
new green-field site plan with no infrastructure and no motorway or
rail links and which would take the rest of my life to build is
insanely and asininely stupid."
The idea has been championed
by London Mayor Boris Johnson, and suggested sites include Cliffe,
Grain and two floating islands in the estuary itself.
The committee is holding its
own inquiry into the country’s aviation capacity, and is due to
produce recommendations next year.
The government has also
established an independent commission to tackle the
Led by economist Sir Howard
Davies, it is due to issue interim findings by the end of next year
and a final report in 2015.
Mr O’Leary criticised this
time frame, claiming it is "just another example of kicking the
aviation strategy can further down the road".
The government could make a
decision "by 7pm tonight and we could do away with two years of
deliberation", he claimed.
Simon Buck, chief executive
of the British Air Transport Association, told MPs on the committee
that aviation had suffered from decades of dithering.
He said: "We have had 30 to 40 years of decisions being
put off or not made. The commission findings must be accepted by
all political parties."
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