We're grassroots Heathrow residents proving that communities less dependent on oil can be more resilient, stronger and happier. We take direct action on climate change and shrinking supplies of cheap energy by transitioning to a post-oil, community-led future for the Heathrow villages.

BAA: hands off the Heathrow villages

Posted: April 18th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Media | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Here is a letter we sent off to all the local newspapers this week: The message is clear. BAA lost all the arguments on Heathrow expansion a long time ago and their latest desperate attempt to get a third runway is laughable to say the least. Local residents and environmental campaigners are tired of repeating the same old arguments that resulted in the plans being scrapped two years ago but we have to remember why we won.

Locally a third runway at Heathrow would mean 700 homes completely demolished with thousands more peoples livelihoods wrecked, the excellent Heathrow Primary School would be tarmacked and hundreds of dead bodies at Cherry Lane Cemetery would be dug up to make way for a new motorway. The whole of West London would be blighted by the extra noise and air pollution and then you have the massive impacts on climate change and the environment – a third runway alone would result in 220,000 extra flights a year, in emission terms equivalent to Kenya’s yearly emissions output.

Last week, thirty people gathered outside the gate of ‘Grow Heathrow’; our squatted community garden site which was originally occupied as part of the No 3rd runway campaign, as a show of solidarity with everyone who would be affected by a 3rd runway. A banner was held up which read: “Return of the killer runway. You resurrect it. We will bury it. Again.”  This is a threat which we believe thousands of activists all over the country and all over the world will keep should the 3rd runway ever come back on the table.

BA Chief says Heathrow 3rd runway “will never be built”

Posted: June 22nd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Media | Tags: , | No Comments »

BA chief executive Willie Walsh has said that a third runway at Heathrow “will never be built”. He told a Times CEO yesterday that “it’s dead” and that British Airways were looking for expansion elsewhere.

This is brilliant news for the residents of Sipson, Harmondsworth and Harlington and hopefully now we will see the full transformation of the villages that have been blighted for so long.

John Stewart, chair of the residents organisation HACAN said:

“It now looks as if finally the third runway has been killed off. It’s most enthusiastic backers, British Airways, are now planning for life without a new runway.”

Stewart added:

“BAA should now sell off the houses they have bought in Sipson to allow life in the villages to get back to normal.”

Ain’t that the truth.

Grow Heathrow stays

Posted: January 23rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Media | Tags: , | No Comments »

Transition Heathrow and Sipson residents celebrated on Saturday morning as new court papers seeking to evict our community garden Grow Heathrow revealed that the project won’t have to appear in court until November this year.

The good news came after a turbulent two weeks for the environmental movement after revelations came out about the workings of undercover police in campaign groups.

The extra ten months gives the team at Grow Heathrow more time to turn the land into a flourishing market garden. The project has provided local residents with a space to start building more sustainable Heathrow communities after the the 3rd runway was dropped in March 2010.

Leading up to a court case seeking to evict us a few months ago we received many statements of support from a wide range of people including MPs, airport workers, local police and many local residents. The Petition to “Keep Grow Heathrow Alive” also received over 700 signatures.

 Since March 1st 2010 the Transition Heathrow activists and local residents have been working together to turn the site into a hub for all the community. The project has hosted various events from food growing workshops, direct action trainings and a banquet.

Before the activists arrived the derelict greenhouses were used by the owners to illegally dump cars and other waste. Grow Heathrow gardeners and local residents have since cleared the refuse with the help of the local council and carefully restored the glass in the greenhouses – turning the land back into a market garden and a meeting space for local people.

 Residents who had been fighting Heathrow’s expansion welcomed the initiative, which is located on the site of the now-cancelled 3rd runway. Activists initially occupied the land in solidarity with the villagers BAA had been trying to force from their homes to make way for the expansion.

Transition Heathrow member Jo Rake, 21, said:

“Due to the threat of eviction it has meant the past few months has been filled with working out how we could resist being evicted. This decision to delay our court case until November recognises the need of a transition phase for the Heathrow villages. BAA are still trying to buy up all the homes they can get for the 3rd runway so now that we have a secure site for the next 10 months, we can continue to work with the local residents to show BAA where to go”.

Local resident Tracy Howard, 35, said:

“The local residents have been thrilled by the news that Grow Heathrow will remain in Sipson for a lot longer than first thought. The site has provided a space for us all to come together again to rebuild after the blight caused by the 3rd runway issue. Not only is the site used for events, workshops and skillshares – it has become a hang out for residents and activists who have become very close friends since they took the site. I am looking forward to growing more vegetables over the summer to provide locally sourced organic veg, rather than food shipped in from across the world to our shelves at big supermarkets.”

Daughter of Tracy, Olivia Howard, 11,  also added:

“It’s nice to hang out somewhere where there is no agenda and you just get to be yourself. A place where there is nice people and local people and you have the opportunity to make a difference.”

Joining Forces

Posted: November 26th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Residents | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

After months of planning, in early October, Transition Heathrow finally took off. After moving into a house in the lovely village of Harlington we finally had our platform to start the project.

So far we have been settling in and meeting local residents, listening to everyone’s ideas and views on how the local community feels about the area, the people and the bastards BAA.

It was immediately clear that there is a massive sense of community spirit round here. Locals waving to each other in the streets and visiting each other for cups of tea.

We have been made to feel very welcome. After announcing ourselves at a meeting organized by our local Labour MP John McDonnell (legend) the audience seemed extremely enthusiastic.

Quite frankly, I can’t think of a better place in England to bring the transition town model to; with the attitudes of the locals I am more than confident that we will succeed in our aims.

This month we’re ready to get stuck in on the ground and have plans to organize a film showing before Christmas and Copenhagen to formally unveil ourselves.