Thursday 9th September, JW Marriott Grosvenor House
ExCeL London - 30 Sep - 01 Oct 2021
18 October 2021 - Virtual
ALISTAIR DARLING, secretary of state for transport, was the guest of the Aviation Club last week. In a well received short speech, the minister had to get to the House of Commons to open the debate on the Budget, Mr Darling went over old ground praising the air transport industries contribution to the economics of the country. He believes he is the longest minister to hold the transport brief in recent times pointing out that since 1979 there have been three prime ministers, six chancellors and 17 ministers for transports. Questions were limited due to the time schedule, with legal expert Howard Caplan first on his feet asking if the government would support the airlines, who are open to much more liability than their American cousins, in respect of another 9/11 tragedy. The minister carefully noted the comments. Bob Schummacher of Continental Airlines took the opportunity to raise the situation regarding the Gatwick Express pointing out that it was standing room only as he came up to London mid-morning. The minister said he was personally very aware of the problem (and that from a Scotsman too) but said that there had to be a balance between the international airports requirements and that of the local commuters. More to follow on this one.