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Protesters purchase runway land

January 13, 2009

The wave of dissent over the proposed construction of a third runway at Heathrow shows no sign of abating after protesters purchased part of the land that was earmarked for its construction.

The area - the size of half a football pitch - is located near the village of Sipson, which itself would lose hundreds of homes in the wake of the airport's expansion.

The Greenpeace coalition - which includes actress Emma Thompson, Conservative front bench spokesperson Justine Greening and impressionist Alistair McGowan - has vowed not to sell the land to the Government or BAA should the expansion get the green light.

John Sauven, Greenpeace director, said: "Many thousands of people will be prepared to peacefully defend their field in person, standing in front of bulldozers and blocking construction. This site will become a focus for climate campaigners."

Following further protests and dissent among a number of Labour MPs, Prime Minister Gordon Brown is expected once again to delay announcement of whether or not the expansion will go ahead, a decision which was provisionally scheduled for this week.