The Mayor of London today spoke out against calls from Santa Claus to expand Heathrow airport and build a third runway to support growth of his worldwide present distribution outfit.
‘We all know air travel is bad for the environment, and reindeer are notorious for their carbon emissions,’ said Boris Johnson. ‘The last thing any Londoner under the flight path wants is to look up into the night sky on Christmas Eve and get a face-full of reindeer shit. Anyway, why anyone would take seriously the ramblings of a rotund, Nordic-looking clown who has somehow found a place in people’s hearts is beyond me.’
Supporters of a third runway say that it would bring a £7m seasonal boost to the economy, particularly in sales of oats and carrots, and would create much-needed employment in the elf community. But opponents claim that for those under the flight path the increased air traffic would bring light and noise pollution from Rudolph’s flashing-red landing light and the constant ringing of sleigh bells.
‘All Santa wants is to create a modern operations hub in south-west London where he can fly to a wider range of destinations,’ said a spokesman for the Lapland-based firm. ‘Admittedly we are concerned about delays from flight cancellations, and we shan’t be subcontracting to Ryanair again after they stung us for baggage charges and then left us 40 miles from our destination, but at least the nibbles that people leave out for Santa mean he won’t need to touch the in-flight meals.’
The Government is conducting a major review of festive aviation arrangements, but the Mayor is clear what the answer should be. ‘We need a new airport in the Thames estuary,’ he said. ‘Santa’s sleigh would have to develop amphibious capability and there could be an increase in reindeer drownings, but with careful planning we can make it work. The last thing we want is another major infrastructure project being stopped in the courts by a white-bearded old man.’