Gatwick Airport 'to unveil plans to put emergency runway into use'

A report that Gatwick Airport will this week 'unveil controversial plans to put its emergency runway into routine use to increase passenger capacity' features in today's newspaper round-up.

The Telegraph reports that the airport's plans, to be published on Thursday, "could result in more than 84,000 extra flights per year". The paper says that the "8,400-foot emergency runway runs parallel to the 10,800-foot main runway and is currently used as a taxiway or as an alternative when the primary runway is undergoing maintenance".

The Financial Times (subscription) reports that "housing associations have called for £42bn of funding from the UK government during the 2020s to build social housing — far in excess of the £2bn so far committed by [Prime Minister] Theresa May". The paper says that the "current funding for social housing is still far below its level before 2010, when the incoming Tory-led coalition implemented steep cuts in the wake of the financial crisis".

The Times (subscription) reports that "Bellway, the FTSE 250 housebuilder, has reported a 14 per cent jump in annual profits after building and selling more than 10,000 homes for the first time". The paper says that the company "reported pre-tax profits of £641.1 million, boosting revenue by 15.6 per cent to £2.9 billion in the year to the end of July. It sold 10,307 homes, compared to 9,644 last year".

The Guardian reports that shale gas fracking "has begun in the UK for the first time since 2011 despite an attempt by protesters to blockade the entrance to the Lancashire site". The paper says that "activists from campaign group Reclaim the Power used a van to block the entrance to a site on Preston New Road near Blackpool for 12 hours from 4.30am on Monday, but the shale gas company Cuadrilla said all the equipment it needed to frack was already there and it had started the process by 1pm".

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