This is a reply to Michael Downer’s letter of 26th Jan
HOUSE OF COMMONS
LONDON SW1A 0AA
Mr Michael Downer
Southend on Sea
Our ref: RSE14183
8th February 2011
Dear Mr Downer,
Thank you for your recent letter regarding your previous correspondence.
Firstly I should say that my statement in reference to public support for the expansion was based on my experiences in dealing with my constituents and their correspondence. Since my first General Election campaign in 2004, I have spoken to hundreds of people regarding the expansion proposals, across the constituency. The majority were supportive of the benefits the expansion will bring to our town.
As you will no doubt be aware, the judicial review application against the runway extension plans has now been dismissed by the High Court. I am glad that this decision has been reached, and I look forward to the prosperity the improved and expanded airport will bring to Southend.
Regarding your concerns over past Council decisions which have cost the Borough financially, of course I sympathise with the taxpayer whenever public money is not used as effectively as it could be. It is this sympathy which led to my criticism of the appeal being granted legal aid, as I made clear in my previous correspondence. Please find a copy of this letter enclosed for ease of reference.
I am sorry that we disagree on this issue, and I hope that it will not prevent you from raising any concerns you may have in the future. Thank you once again for taking the time to contact me.
James Duddridge MP