The UK Government has commissioned an official examination of the Thames Estuary airport plan.

Airport news for Flights,Heathrow on 19/01/2012.

Arrange your travel plans by choosing from car hire, hotels, flights, airport parking and travel insurance using our form.

The study on the proposed airport is slated to begin in March, officials announced on Wednesday. The design, which proponents say will allow London to maintain its status as a UK and European aviation hub, is backed by mayor Boris Johnson although Downing Street has said that no decision has yet been made on the issue.

Meanwhile, Labour has described the coalition as being in “a complete mess” regarding UK aviation policy, as Prime Minister David Cameron has stood against Heathrow expansions whilst deputy Nick Clegg opposes the proposed facility in the Thames Estuary. Cameron reportedly is supportive of the Thames plan but has opted to wait until the consultation is complete.

The news comes as aviation officials and industry bodies continue to push for greater capacity at UK airports as current facilities become increasingly strained; figures released this week show Heathrow is currently running at more than 98 per cent of its capacity.

But environmentalists continue to argue that building a new airport on reclaimed land on the Thames Estuary island would have catastrophic effects on the area's natural environment, which supports a renowned array of wintering bird life.

More Airport News