The enquiry into plans for a second runway at Stansted airport will start on April 15 next year.
Airport operator BAA, which also owns Heathrow and Gatwick airports, wants to build a new runway and terminal at Stansted. If its proposals are approved the number of aircraft movements at Stansted could increase from 200,000 to 495,000. The number of passengers using the airport could also rise from just over 23 million to about 70 million a year.
The enquiry into the second runway is likely to be held near the airport and could last up to a year. But even then a decision about whether a new runway and terminal will be built is unlikely to be made until at least 2011.
As with most airport expansion applications, some local residents and environmental groups are vehemently opposed to the plans. The Councils Opposed to Second Runway Group (CO2) has asked for more time before the start of the enquiry so that extra information can be gathered.
A new runway at Stansted airport may be a long way off but you can enjoy a stay at a Stansted airport hotel to get you into the mood for your holiday now.
The Stansted Saracen's Head is a charming three star airport hotel in the village of Great Dunmow, only five miles from the airport. All rooms at the hotel are non-smoking and have an ensuite bathroom, TV, radio, trouser press and tea/coffee making facilities.
The Stansted Saracen's Head also offers a restaurant, bar and lounge and has its own on-site car parking with courtesy transfers to the airport.
Room at the Stansted Saracen's Head Hotel with up to 15 days holiday parking from £112*
*Please note: This price is correct for bookings searched on August 27, 2008. Prices are subject to change. Book the Stansted Saracen's Head Hotel in advance to get the best price and availability.