Praise for Peterborough’s bid to be home to Heathrow Aiport’s expansion hub

Heathrow visit to Gateway Peterborough. Steve Bowyer, Coun John Holdich, Emma Gilthorpe from Heathrow,  Mayor James Palmer and Coun Peter Hiller. EMN-180607-184613009
Heathrow visit to Gateway Peterborough. Steve Bowyer, Coun John Holdich, Emma Gilthorpe from Heathrow, Mayor James Palmer and Coun Peter Hiller. EMN-180607-184613009
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The boss of Heathrow Airport’s third runway expansion has praised a bid by business and political chiefs to bring a job creating logistics hub to Peterborough.

Emma Gilthorpe, executive director expansion for Heathrow Airport, said a two hour presentation on the strengths of the city seemed to have ticked all the boxes.

Heathrow visit to Gateway Peterborough. Mayor James Palmer EMN-180607-184347009

Heathrow visit to Gateway Peterborough. Mayor James Palmer EMN-180607-184347009

It took place at Roxhill Gateway - the proposed location for the hub - and highlighted business diversity, transport connections, digital connectivity, and links between education and the workplace.

Ms Gilthorpe said: “It was a very professional presentation and very well thought through.

“It was great to see so many stakeholders here  - we are looking for that kind of connectivity in the bid.”

Sixty five cities and towns are competing to be home to one of four planned logistics hubs, which will be used to preassemble and consolidate components before transporting them to Heathrow for the £14 billion expansion.

Emma Gilthorpe

Emma Gilthorpe

Ms Gilthorpe said: “We expect to have visited all the bidders by the autumn. A questionnaire will go to the interested parties when we will go right into the detail of each application.

“For instance, a question we asked at the presentation was about the nearest rail hub to Peterborough - we’d want more details about the location and methods of access.”

Steve Bowyer, chief executive of Opportunity Peterborough said, “We were absolutely thrilled with how the meeting went with the delegation from Heathrow. We will continue to work closely with Heathrow to make the strongest possible case for the city.”

A decision on the bid is expected in early summer next year and the hub could be operational by 2024.

The Heathrow team was also impressed with the Roxhill site and the potential it offered, especially with so much activity on site already. Securing a logistics hub would not only radically boost Peterborough’s economy but also the surrounding area, so whilst a final decision on the four hub locations will not be made until next summer, we will continue to work closely with Heathrow to make the strongest possible case for the city.”

- not just for its transport links, gigabit connectivity and commitment to skills development, but also for the glowing testimonials from recent investors who conveyed just how much a move to Peterborough has benefitted their businesses.

“It also gave us a chance to make Peterborough stand out even more by bringing its Smart City and circular economy journey to life, tying into Heathrow’s commitment to limiting environmental impact and showcasing the forward-thinking, hands-on approach that makes Peterborough such a fantastic place to work.”

“The Heathrow team was also impressed with the Roxhill site and the potential it offered, especially with so much activity on site already. Securing a logistics hub would not only radically boost Peterborough’s economy but also the surrounding area, so whilst a final decision on the four hub locations will not be made until next summer, we will continue to work closely with Heathrow to make the strongest possible case for the city.”

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