Manchester Airport has incurred the wrath of Cheshire campaigners, after a plan to demolish two historic houses became known.
Officials want to build a new hangar on the cleared site, but pressure groups are seeking court action to prevent the development.
Stop Expansion at Manchester Airport (SEMA), a newly formed protest group, succumbed to an unfavourable 5:4 vote by local councillors last week, despite an impromptu rally outside the town hall gates.
Only a judge can overturn the ruling now, much to the dismay of Peter Johnson, a resident in one of the doomed properties. Mr. Johnson has issued a warning to Manchester, opposing the demolition.
“We have fought long and hard to stop our homes from being demolished and we won’t give up the fight just yet.” A colony of great-crested newts could also be destroyed by construction crews, despite being protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981.
A nearby townhouse was recently spared the bulldozer, prolonging four centuries of history, but the destruction of the remaining buildings is almost inevitable.
When complete, the 18,000 sq. metre hangar will occupy a space between Hasty and Runger Lanes.
Manchester Airport believes that the expansion is sustainable and will have no adverse effects on the local environment.
Eco-warriors are not convinced, believing that noise pollution could rise beyond acceptable levels. Liberal Democrat Councillor, Martin Eakins, has slammed the local council for its part in approving the hangar development, suggesting that planners were simply ignorant of the plight of local residents.
Visitors to the Manchester Evening News website were less sympathetic to Hasty Lane residents, as the two homes in question are rented from, and located within the limits of, Manchester Airport.
Whilst it might be a little mean to demolish somebody’s house, the airport has a legal entitlement to modify buildings on its soil, providing that property laws are not broken.
Of course, the battle between Manchester Airport and the dethroned Hasty Lane residents could be about something else altogether – sufficient compensation.